Nashville is one hell of the world’s finest music and arts scene extravaganza and it’s no wonder it continues to produce more and more exciting new bands like the one we’ve got for you today. After releasing their debut demo in early 2014 and a new collection of tracks to be physically released as two splits with their local pals from SALLOW and IST, WATCHER have caught up with IDIOTEQ to introduce themselves, talk about their local scene and plot plans for the future.
Live pics by Diana Lee Zadlo.
Hey there Dave! What’s up in Nashville? Tell us a bit about your band WATCHER and its place in your local music scene.
Hey Karol! WATCHER is a four-piece “post” hardcore band. As for our place in the Nashville local/punk/diy/metal scene we have been really fortunate to be part of a scene that has a lot of complementary yet distinct bands doing interesting twists on different kinds of punk and metal and rock and stuff. I like to think that we are also doing that thing.
Are there any songwriters that you would link your material to or who inspired you to write the way you do? Would you name WATCHER a tribute to some band or a movement? Was there some kind of a catalyst that pushed you in that particular post hardcore direction?
When we started out were really into the idea of trying to do hardcore punk with the personal and emotive approach of Dischord bands like EMBRACE, RITES OF SPRING, and ONE LAST WISH while adding in other hardcore and emo influences. Now I guess we are just trying to make punk music that is representative of our collective interests and attitudes towards punk/hardcore. I personally have been drawing more from other kinds of hardcore in the vein of ebullition and slap-a-ham. As far as the rest of the band goes, their tastes are pretty varied …but we all really love HARVEY MILK. I feel like we are able to have different tastes that align without precisely overlapping.
You’ll be performing at this year’s Nameless Fest. Can you expound more on that gig? Also, what other shows do you have lined up for the nearest future and what other independent festivals would you recommend for a hardcore punk junkie traveling across Tennessee?
Nameless Fest is the product of the badass Kathryn Edwards. It is gonna be fucking sweet. Pretty much all of our favorite local bands are playing, who also happen to be most of our favorite bands in general. They are also gonna be some badass out-of-towners. I am personally stoked to see genocide pact again. As for the future we are hopefully going to do a small tour towards the end of the summer. Kathryn will probably help a lot with that. Seriously, Kathryn fucking rules. I don’t know about many festivals in TN. Murfreesboro seems to have cool shit happening most of the time. Chattanooga is nice. Knoxville is supposed to have some cool DIY spaces. Memphis is also supposed to be cool. I rarely leave my house.
Ok mate, let’s dive a bit deeper. How did you get into music in the first place? Tell me more about your other projects and previous bands.
I guess I just always thought it was the most viscerally awesome thing I had access to. And punk music, in one form or another, always seemed to be the most relevant and relatable. All of us come from different backgrounds but we all come from families that exposed us to a lot of music. Austin plays in a bunch of bands, and has done so for a minute. Noel and Ian also play in other bands and have been playing music together since they were in high school. I have dicked around with music since high school but this is the most serious thing I have done.
How complicated was the writing and recording process for “___ “?
It was refreshingly simple and painless. Writing can be hard just because getting time to get together can be difficult. But recording was a dream. Shibby Poole is the man to thank for that.
What’s the story behind the title?
It isn’t even a title. We have been playing most of these songs for about a year. We wanted to physically release them as splits but still have it so everyone could listen to all the songs Also our friend and badass artist Juliana Horner did some totally bitchin art for us and we wanted to show that off.
The first split is with Sallow (who seriously fucking slay) and is about to come out. The second split is gonna be with Ist (who are out of this world) and will come out probably towards the end of the summer/fall.
Did you have a certain goal for this record?
We pretty much just really wanted to put some more stuff “out there”. Also we got that art and really felt like we had to step up to the plate.
Ok, so what’s up next for WATCHER? What plans do you guys have for the rest of the year and beyond?
Split with SALLOW and split with IST (no internet presence as of yet). Hopefully we will have an EP by the end of the year if we can get our stuff together. Tour?
What has been the greatest gift that being a musician has given you?
A better way to interact with music.
Alright Dave. What else? Apart from music, what’s been keeping you busy lately?
Work. Buffy. Bjork.
Thanks a lot!
THANK YOU! CHEERS!