Behind Punk is a D.I.Y. punk blog/fanzine/record label based out of Moscow

We need to focus on positive change in the world, and it starts with our scene and the people within it. More hugs, less shrugs!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Best Albums, Ep's, Split's of 2012

Well, here ya go.
I'm sure I've probably missed something. However, a great year for music.
 If you enjoy the music, support the artists by purchasing their albums or songs.


Olive Drab - Girl

Olive Drab is made up of members of Hightide Hotel, Snowing, and a couple others. This is their first release and i love it. Nice band.

Restorations - A/B

‘A’ and ‘B’ are both great songs, they are also great examples variety within genre and therefore, we should all expect a delightful album (which will be on SideOneDummy), these two songs are nothing short of breathtaking.

Bangers - Good Livin'

This EP will be a sleeper hit, but a solid release for Kiss of Death/Specialist Subject/Angry Chuck Records(RUSSIA!) , do yourself a favor and just give this EP a few listens and you’ll be a fan too.

Shook Ones - MerriweatherPostPavilion

To be honest I'm not a big fan of 'Shook Ones', but MerriweatherPostPavilion and Fancy is a great songs. Can't wait to hear Shook Ones/Death Is Not Glamorours Split.

Crow Bait - Split Songs

Features members of Iron Chic, Jonesin’, Sister Kisser and a bunch more bands. These songs are written so well, and they are a ton of fun. Get in on this band before they blow up.

Sister Kisser/Rumspringer Split

 Rumspringer is super hooky, melodic pop-punk from Arizona, and the good ol' Long Island boys in Sister Kisser power through with more of that urgent, heartfelt, melodic punk rock we know and love. 

Cerce - Cerce

Cerce is a Boston, MA based band who play a great style of female fronted hardcore, punk, and post hardcore. Probably my favorite band in hardcore right now. Amazing band

Prawn - Ships

"Prawn seem to do everything right on Ships. From its perfect balance of post-rock atmosphere and twinkly emo riffs, to its no filler 29 minute runtime, Prawn feel like a band that has finally found their sound and a band who knows exactly what they're doing. With the growth Prawn have made over their three releases, and with Ships being their best effort yet, it's easy to envision Prawn at the top of the emo food chain in the near future."

White Lung - S/T

Captain, We're Sinking - Montreal

Not going to stop listening to it. Montreal on repeat

Onsind - Mildred, Margie, Annie, Clarice

I was really impressed when I first heard this, such a solid album, brilliant lyrics and emotion.

Timeshares/Dividers Split

Alright, I'm sure most of you know who this bands is by now. All of their stuff has been put on the blog in the past here, so what can I say that hasn't already been said.  Amazing split by 2 amazing bands

Dividers - Anjelica Huston: We Have A Problem

Yes. I love this guys.

Glocca Morra - An Obscure Moon Lighting An Obscure World

What can I say about this album that hasn’t already been said by tons of people.. I’ll just say it, amazing! I remember two years ago when I first heard Glocca Morra, and I loved the songs a lot.There’s really something for everyone here—twinkly guitars for the emo revival set, loud noise for the punk crowd, drug references, Arrested Development references…it’s all here. 

Spraynard - Exton Square

Funtitled was one of my favorite records of 2011 but Exton Square got me excited about the future and wanting more.  I'm super bummed that they're breaking up... Best dudes


Rockets On Wire - I Am Not Your Home

Titus Andronicus - Local Business

Ok, so it’s not the Monitor. Titus still make some fucking amazing shambling rock n roll. I love it.

...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead... - Lost Songs

I don't know much about this band, but this album is great

MewithoutYou - Ten Stories

Fang Island - Major

Best Practices - The EP LP

Sirs - S/T

 If you love fast paced punk rock, mixed with math rock, and tons of emo influence, this album will be your favorite.

The Ambulars - Dreamers Asleep At The Wheel

Fierce Brosnan - This Is Our Home And We Won't Let It Go

New Bruises - Chock Full Of Misery

White Lung - Sorry

Cloud Nothings - Attack On Memory

Attack on Memory is a really great indie-rock album. This is what a indie-rock record in 2012 should sound like.

Apologies, I Have None - London

Like Bats - Midwest Nothing

The most underrated band. Take it listen

John K. Samson - Provincial

This album will put you in a relaxed mood no matter how stressful of a day you’ve had. Best lyrics ever.

Japandroids - Celebration Rock

When I first heard this, I thought it would be my album of the year. Every song is a goddamn anthem celebrating life.

Coping - Nope

'Nope' is Coping's new and the last album, unfortunately they broke up... but I think this record is a nice farewell. 

Hold Tight - Blizzard Of '96

So it’s no surprise that Hold Tight’s newest album is full of plenty of great singalong pop-punk songs. 

Sundials - When I Couldn't Breathe

I must have listened to it 20 times that first week. So catchy and just flat out rockin’. Super happy these guys ended up on Asian Man and what a great album to kick off that partnership. 

Glocca Morra - Just Married

This is the album of the year, in my opinion of course. Pretty sure I listened to this record more than anything else this entire year. Do yourself a favor and go listen to it right now.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Behind Punk Mixtape #11

Here's the 14 awesome bands and 14 newest songs.  If you enjoy the music on this mix, support the artists by purchasing their albums or songs. It really does help!
Well, hope you enjoy it! thanks
Also, I have about 5-6 rad things that will be out this autumn, I could use some money to help fund them… Some releases is still available, If you haven’t picked up a copy yet, you still can at
More hugs, less shrugs

01. You'll Live - Pretty Good Rainbow
02. Duck. Little Brother, Duck! - Calvin Young
03. Sirs - Parading
04. Coping - B
05. Glocca Morra - Eat the Fucking Snow
06. Prawn - Donald Domesky
07. Everyone Everywhere - Turn & Go & Turn
08. Spook Houses - Bad Sound
09. Big Awesome - Living With Love
10. Dads - Get to the Beach
11. Swearin' - Here to Hear
12. Sundials - Unpredictable
13. The Smith Street Band - Tom Busby
14. The Mountain Goats - Cry for Judas

Monday, September 17, 2012

Interview with Tim of Elway

ELWAY IN EUROPE! Do yourself a favor, check upcoming EURO DATES for info. Support these great guys. Also check their tour blog
Thanks to Tim for taking the time out to answer some questions. 

Hey Tim! How are you doing? How's Colorado?

I’m doing pretty well. I’m just finishing up packing my bag for a trip to Iowa and Chicago with some friends. Colorado is just fine, it’s hot as hell outside and it’s got me craving a Mojito!

 First off, introduce yourself and members of the band:

My name’s Tim Browne and I sing and play guitar. Garrett Carr plays the drums, Joe Henderer plays bass and sings, and the venerable Brian Van Proyen plays guitar and sings.

So, tell me how 10-4 Eleanor - Elway originally came together? And how did the name come about and what does it mean?

It was either August or September of 2007 that we had our first practice and started to put songs together. I moved to Fort Collins from a small town called Monument to go to college, and the first year that I lived here I didn’t really have any friends to play music with, so I just wrote all these songs and never did much with them other than play the occasional open mic. I really started to get the itch to start a band after I got The Lawrence Arms’ “Oh! Calcutta!” record, because it reminded me of just how much fun it is to be shouting songs into a microphone with your best friends, and so I got really determined to get something together. I met Garrett and Joe through mutual friends and Brian, who moved up to Fort Collins later was already a good friend of mine, eventually joined up and we started writing and demoing these songs and ‘tightening’ up our live show. It’s still not very tight though, unfortunately. After spending an entire couple of practices mulling over various band names, we finally agreed on 10-4 Eleanor, which is a reference to skit by a comedy group from the 1960s called Firesign Theatre, because it seemed catchy and memorable, but above all not serious. The attitude that the band was founded on was to have fun with the music and never take ourselves (or anything) too seriously. We played our first show on December 16th, 2007 and it went over really well and from then on, we just survived off of the momentum. I think that we started playing at a time when Fort Collins was really hungry for a thriving DIY scene. We played basements and living rooms and made something of a name for ourselves around town just having a blast and drinking. Fast forward a few years, 2 LPs, 3 EPs, 1 split 7”, and 300+ shows later, here we are!

Why do you change the name of the band from 10-4 Eleanor to Elway?

Well, like I said, 10-4 Eleanor was the product of our mutual interest in not taking anything too seriously. The band name just seemed to have that essence of not giving a fuck that we found both funny and accessible. Once we signed to Red Scare though, we wanted to try to start fresh, so to speak, and really try to milk our luck for all it’s worth. We changed the name to Elway because it is a more memorable and more accessible band name, but really because it still carried the tongue in cheek attitude and sarcasm that still pervades our characters as people and as a band. The band is, ostensibly, named after an American football player named John Elway, who in Colorado is a living legend. None of us care much (if at all) about sports, so the rechristening of our Colorado-based punk band after a famous Colorado athlete is purely ironic, and also pays a certain homage to the place that we began as a band. Elway just gave us a sort of a new beginning without sacrificing our commitment to never taking ourselves too seriously.

What's your experience been like with Death To False Records? I remember Scotty put your two records "Too Bad" and "Words Can Not Express How Much Fuck This Band" for free download. how do you adapt to downloading music illegally? Do you support downloading music? How do you think small bands can make a profit?

When I first emailed Scotty about putting out 10-4’s recordings on DTFH, the label was in its infancy. The only records on the website were either projects that Scotty or label cohort Jonathan Minor were directly involved in. I loved the idea of a not for profit record label that helps to spread the word about good, hardworking bands to those who would listen. We had our recordings sitting around, and lord knows we weren’t going to be able to make people come to our Myspace page and listen on our own. So Scotty agreed to put our music up for download, and it turned out to be one of the best things that has ever happened for our band. DTFH started to earn a reputation for promoting good music for good music’s sake, and people took note. It seemed like as early as our first tour there were people in town that seemed so far away that were singing the songs and buying merch and genuinely caring about the music. It’s hard to look at the free flow of music on the internet as being a bad thing. It is a very humbling feeling to play my songs in Germany, Wales, or Russia and see people singing along. It is a feeling so incredible, that it’s hard for me to be anything but smitten over the fact that they have heard the songs at all, regardless of how they acquired them. The music industry isn’t what it once was, and we’re not going back to the time where making punk rock records was in any way profitable. You can’t stop the free flow of information via the internet, and I wouldn’t want to anyway. If one person in Moscow hears Elway through illegal downloading and likes it, it is worth it. We only ask that that person comes out to our show and maybe buys a shirt or something to help us keep touring. It’s hard for a band our size to make a profit, but considering that we started this band in the mice-infested basement of a house in Fort Collins and toured our way across the country in basements and dive-bars, I don’t think that making loads of money is our main concern. We just want enough to keep doing what we love.

How did you guys get involved with Red Scare Industries? How has it been working with them?

Me and Brian were having a few cocktails one night at the local punk bar in Fort Collins, and through some kind of cosmic punk rock happenstance, we managed to bump into Brendan Kelly from The Lawrence Arms, who was in town visiting family. After a few drinks, we managed to convince him to play an acoustic set while he was in town and we arranged for our band to open. I can’t really remember the specifics of the show, but for whatever reason we must have done pretty well, because after the show, Brendan got us all in a room and told us that he wanted us to do a record with Red Scare Industries. This was hugely stoking for us, as we’re all pretty big fans of the music that Red Scare has put out, and it was a very exciting prospect to be working with them. So after a few months of talking back and forth with Red Scare head honcho Toby Jeg, we hatched a plan to record Delusions in Chicago with Matt Allison. We put the record out May of last year and have been touring on and off ever since. Our new EP Hence My Optimism is coming out next week (June 12th) and we’re just as stoked to be working with Toby and Red Scare now as we ever were before.

I know "Hence My Optimism" just recently came out, how has the reaction been from fans? Are you working on anything new? Maybe an EP/split/album?

The EP only came out a week ago now, so it’s hard to gauge the reaction just yet. I can say that we’re very proud of the new songs and we hope that people will share in our enthusiasm. In terms of new material, we’ve got a pretty substantial batch of songs in the works that will eventually become our 3rd LP. Hopefully we can get to recording sometime late this year or early next year.

How was european tour with Nothinghton? You've played a lot shows in many cities. What are the main differences between playing shows in the U.S. as opposed to European shows? 

Touring with Nothington in Europe was as awesome as it was totally strange. It was my first time in Europe, and it was really great to get to experience all these new places with a band that I’ve been a fan of for years. I was playing drums, which is not by any stretch what I am used to doing in bands. I’m a decently capable drummer, but the live dynamic is totally different from playing guitar and singing. It took some getting used to, but it wound up being crazy amounts of fun! Playing in Europe, best as I can tell, is in almost every imaginable way better than touring the US. At every show we played in Europe, we were provided with dinner, a place to stay, and usually breakfast! That is unheard of in the US! The drives are shorter and people seem to really appreciate what you do. Not that people over here don’t appreciate musicians, they just don’t have such a forward way of expressing it.

Which of your shows was the most memorable for you?

This isn’t just lip service because this is for a Russian blog, but my favorite shows were the 3 we played in Russia. All of the people we met who were involved with the shows were so energetic and awesome. I mean, one crazy fucker actually crowd surfed on an actual surf board at one point! Our show at Lo-fi in Moscow was probably the craziest show I’ve ever played in any band.

Do you try to go out and see things when you are in different cities?

Being that it was my first time in Europe, I was trying to see as many tourist-type things as possible. It’s actually equally rewarding to me to see ‘the sights’ in different parts of the world as it is to play shows in different parts of the world. I’m incredibly lucky to be able to do the things I do, and so I try to fill my days with exploring cities that are new and strange to me.

What's your favorite and least favorite part about touring? How do you handle the rigors of the road?

My favorite part is meeting new people who you feel like have been your friends for years! One thing I’ve noticed about touring is that the world seems to become a smaller place, and you feel more connected with people all over after having met them and shared an evening drinking and singing songs. It’s one of the most amazing feelings to converse with somebody halfway across the world who loves the same music or literature as you! I’ll quit jobs and go into debt to have that feeling with as many people as possible! The worst part is probably that you have to leave familiar places and people and spend a lot of time without the comfort of a permanent home. Being always in motion makes it hard to relax sometimes. I must say though, it’s really a minor gripe considering how fulfilling it is to be able to take my music on the road.

Since you guys are touring kind of by yourselves, you’re on a lot of bills with local bands. Have any of them really stood out to you?

Nothington had the privilege of playing with some really great bands on this last European tour. Some of my favorites were Terrible Feelings from Sweden, All Aboard from Germany, Sam Russo and Leagues Apart from The UK, and Rooftops from Russia. It’s really awesome when you show up to a town you’ve never played before and there’s a local opener that just rips. I’m excited to see who will be playing some of Elway’s shows!

How is the Colorado scene? Any acts we've been unfortunately overlooking?

Colorado, and Fort Collins in particular is a pretty great place to start a punk rock band, as the living is cheap and simple, and the geographic isolation just begs for a DIY punk scene. It’s not one of the first places you think of when you think emerging punk rock markets, but you can find some real gems here! Sour Boy Bitter Girl, Arliss Nancy, Anchor Point, St. Fall Apart, Boldtype, Allout Helter, and False Colours are among the best Colorado bands, and everyone should check them out!

Could you please talk about your involvement with the DIY punk community, how you got involved in it and how it affects your lives (putting out your music, going on tours and playing shows, etc)

When 10-4 Eleanor got started in 2007, Fort Collins didn’t have too much of a DIY punk scene. We were fortunate enough to have a lot of really awesome, motivated friends that operated house venues and warehouses and other show spaces. In the first year we were playing shows, we saw Fort Collins go from being a city without much of a DIY presence to one of the best scenes we’ve ever experienced in the US. We got our start by spraypainting our CDs and handmaking cases out of old 5 ½” floppy discs. We put our first EP and LP online through Death To False Hope Records, which is a really rad donation based record label out of North Carolina. It was through those connections made online that we were able to bust our asses touring all over the country and make a little bit of a name for ourselves. Of course, we still play basements and DIY spaces all the time. The fact that you can go all over the world and find people who are interested in independent music and places that will host it is an awesome testament to the power of DIY ethics.

Do you think it's necessary for independent musicians and bands to have a form of ethics?

While I would say that I find it very important to know what you believe and why you believe it, I wouldn’t say that every independent musician has to live and play by unbendable rules. For Elway, it is very important not to take playing music so seriously that it becomes a job that is no longer fun. We believe in the power of making a name for your band via self-determination and DIY ethics, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t want to have the assistance of an independent record label like Red Scare Industries or a booking agent in Europe like Benny from Klownhouse tours. The problem I see with a lot of DIY punk bands is a lack of flexibility in their beliefs. When bands are utterly unyielding and loudmouthed in their commitment to being self-determined and self-propelled, they sometimes come off as being stubborn and arrogant and small-minded. I don’t shun bands for wanting to make enough money to pay some bills, and I wouldn’t expect people to shun me for doing the same. Being able to understand and respect different viewpoints on how to conduct yourself as an independent musician is what allows for artistic and professional growth. I’m not going to tell anyone how to express themselves artistically, and it annoys the shit out of me when I am told how to express myself artistically.

What's your biggest gripe with the punk/hardcore scene?

I can only really speak about the American punk/hardcore scene on this one. I will say that in the United States, one thing that really bothers me is the attitude that a lot of people have about the consumption of music both live and digitally. Because of the widespread availability of music for free on the internet via piracy, the actual physical representation of our music is highly devalued. It’s very difficult to make enough money on our record sales in the US to keep touring. That’s fine, it’s unrealistic to expect that people will ever go back to buying music like they did before Napster. The problem arises when people also refuse to pay a reasonable price for a show as well. Going on tour in the US in a huge gas-guzzling van is very expensive. It involves a lot of financial compromises on the part of the touring band in order to get their music out on the road. While I know a lot of really great people have an understanding of this, many others treat small touring bands like garbage, or they refuse to pay $8 for a show with 2 touring bands. The entitlement some people have about it is astounding! You’ll hear things like “If $5 was good enough for Fugazi, then it’s good enough for you!” Such bullshit! When Fugazi was touring, gas was $.89 a gallon and people actually bought records! If fans of independent music are going to download hundreds of thousands of bands’ records without paying a cent, they shouldn’t be allowed to complain when a band so audaciously asks to be paid enough money to get to the next show. That kind of attitude and atmosphere is what leads bands to financial ruin and breaking up. There are a lot of really awesome and talented bands out there who deserve to be heard, and a lot of people who could help these bands out. The fact that some fans of this niche market of music would rather drop $25 on a bar tab than $6 on a punk show just goes to show how shitty and entitled the information age has made some of us. Luckily, this doesn’t seem to be the case with the European or Russian punk scenes from what I’ve noticed on tour with Nothington. As long as people are stoked on touring bands coming to their town, and willing to help us get to the next city without going broke (again), I am perfectly satisfied with the punk/hardcore scene.

What does the future for Elway look like?

Well, we’re going to be touring with Teenage Bottlerocket and The Dopamines in late July. We’re going to Western Canada and the West Coast of the US. That’ll be loads of fun. Then we’re going to tour out to the East Coast in September and fly to Europe and Russia for a 6 week tour. It’ll be our first time there and we’re so fucking excited! We’ll get back in late October and tour down to Fest and back, then we’ll start work sometime shortly thereafter on our third LP. It’ll be a pretty busy second half of the year and we couldn’t be more excited.

Thanks for taking time out to talk with me Tim, can't wait to see you in september! Anything else you'd like to add/share?

Just a big thanks to anyone who is reading this who has taken or will take the time to check us out and maybe come out to a show or two while we’re in your neighborhood! It’s so humbling to hear people getting stoked about our band in other parts of the world. We can’t wait to come and hang out with everyone!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Behind Punk Mixtape #10

I made a new mixtape, all these songs are great for summertime.
It's summer and go ride your bike, make this mixtape your summer soundtrack of 2012.

1. Superchunk - The Majestic
2. Sugar - Changes
3. Seaweed - Crush Us All
4. Archers Of Loaf - Lowest Part Is Free
5. Knapsack - Katherine The Grateful
6. Built To Spill - Sidewalk
7. Modest Mouse - Never Ending Math Equation
8. Neutral Milk Hotel - Holland, 1945
9. The Mountain Goats - Going To Georgia
10. Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - Dial Up
11. Comet Gain - These Are The Dreams Of The Working Girl
12. Tiger Trap - Words And Smiles
13. Go Sailor - Together Forever In Love
14. Discount - Clap and Cough
15. Velocity Girls - Drug Girls
16. Swirlies - Wrong Tube
17. Drop Nineteens - Skull
18. Pavement - Trigger Cut / Wounded Kite At 17
19. The Softies - Over

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Interview with Harris of Sundials

Keep Up With Sundials:

Sundials is a great indie/punk band out of Richmond. For fans of Superchunk, Failures' Union, Teenage Cool Kids, etc. The beats are fast, but poppy and punky. These guys make me want to sing my little heart out. 
Do yourself a favor, check it out at their bandcamp page . Also make sure to buy their new full length, which is coming out soon from Asian man Records. 

Thanks to Harris who was kind enough to take the time to answer some questions. Enjoy!

Hey Harris! How are you doing? How's Richmond?

Hey Vanya! Richmond is great. But I’m actually on tour in Vermont right now. New England is beautiful.

 First off, introduce yourself and members of the band:

Cory plays drums, Carl plays bass, and I play guitar and sing. We all write songs. I don’t think a lot of people know this, but our drummer Cory writes half of them!

So, tell me how Sundials originally came together? And how did the name come about and what does it mean?

We all grew up playing with each others bands in high school and beyond. Carl and I used to play in a band called Friendly Fire, and when that split up I guess we just wanted to keep playing music together. I had seen Cory play in a bunch of awesome dc-influenced dischord kinda bands, and thats kinda what I wanted in a drummer. See, Sundials originally set out to sound like Young Widows and In Utero-era Nirvana... I’d say we hit the nail on the head with that one.
I wanted to name the band off of an Alkaline Trio song from the start, and Sundials was their first release. At the time I wasn't sure how Cory and Carl felt about Trio, so I pitched it as just a general name, and told them about three months later what it came from!

So on to the music. Could you describe the way Sundials sounds?

I like to think that we sound like The Lemonheads covering Alkaline Trio, or maybe vice versa, But that’s probably just totally not true. We all come from pretty different influences. I’ve spent the past two years listening to a ton of Pavement, Nirvana, Replacements, Superchunk, and the two aforementioned bands, so that kinda stuff probably works its way in there. Cory grew up in the DC burbs, and as such was heavily influenced by the dischord catalog, as well as bands like Hot Snakes and Alkaline Trio (duh). Carl just listens to Bad Religion.

 I know that you guys have a split coming out with Tatlins Tower. When should we expect to see that and what made you want to do a split with Tatlins Tower?

The drummer of Tatlins Tower (Dan) recorded Never Settle as well as a few other 7”s we’ve done. I think he showed us a demo of a Tatlins Tower song and we were just blown away. He actually recorded the whole split. It should be out sometime this summer, I’m stoked!

I understand you guys are working on a new album, “When I Couldn’t Breathe” coming out in August. What can we expect? How has that been coming along?

Yeah! We tracked the whole thing two weeks ago, and I couldn’t be more excited. Working with Mike Bardzik felt like a really good fit. We were put in touch with him through our buds in Spraynard, who could only say great things about working with him on Funtitled and Exton Square.

How do you feel the record differs from your previous efforts?

I feel like this record is a much better representation of what we’re trying to do as a band. People have always come up to me at shows and remarked at how much heavier Sundials is live, and I think we captured that this time around. Lyrically... it’s pretty sad. There is not a lot of happy on this one. It’s not a concept record or anything like that, but there is a pretty general theme. I think it’s about always being a want away from happiness.

What's your experience been like with Traffic Street Records? And how did you guys hook up with Asian man Records?

Never Settle was actually a split release of sorts, Traffic Street did the CD, and Toxic Pop did the LP. Sam and Mike were both fantastic to work with! When we started thinking about the new record, we sent out a demo and a letter to a few labels, first and foremost being Asian Man. Mike replied, and I went up to meet him at the Classics of Love show in Philadelphia (which was god damn amazing). It’s honestly a dream come true. I remember flipping through the Asian Man catalog when I was 13, ya know. The self titled Alkaline Trio compilation album was more or less my gateway from Blink-182 and Green Day to Minor Threat and Operation Ivy, as crazy as that sounds. Hell, that record contains our namesake!

 How is the Richmond scene? Any acts we've been unfortunately overlooking?

To many to count! Richmond has historically always been a mid-sized city with a supersize-city community for arts and music. But if I had to name a few, I’m super stoked on Family Cat (think Archers of Loaf meets Jawbreaker), Little Master (Wipers meet Pixies) Springtime (Leatherface meets Dag Nasty), Pedals on our Pirate Ships (heart of gold folk punk) and Hold Tight!, who actually have an unbelievable new record coming out this summer. I got that shit, cause I used to be in that band (and I live with them)!

Could you please talk about your involvement with the DIY punk community, how you got involved in it and how it affects your lives (putting out your music, going on tours and playing shows, etc)

I first started going to DIY punk shows at the Purcellville Skating Rink when I was about 14. I grew up in rural North-Western Virginia, and it was about a 45 minute drive to the nearest show, not to mention my high school. I can’t emphasize how life changing that experience was. It gave me something to do outside of drugs, partying, and sports - which is about all anyone in that area ever did.
When I was 16 I started setting up shows and playing in a band that sounded like Green Day. A few band transformations later, and we decided that after High School we would ditch college, and keep playing music in a bigger city. It was between Philadelphia (because Lifetime was from there) and Richmond (because Avail and Strike Anywhere were from there), but in the end our drummer wanted to go to school, and could only afford it in-state. I spent the next few years touring, living in show houses, and trying to help set up all-ages spaces. A lot has changed in Richmond since then, but I think for the better. Honestly, most of that is due to the efforts of Alex from Hold Tight!. He’s been setting up something like 3 shows a week for the last 5 years, and now has an awesome annual fest going called Stay Sweet!.

Do you think it's necessary for independent musicians and bands to have a form of ethics?

I think it’s important for people to be considerate of one another. There is a lot of language out there that has become common slang, but has really negative connotations. The punk scene isn’t immune to this kind of thing. I think that as a whole we are making progress, but I still hear that shit at shows. Ya know, to a certain extent, bands are representative of their communities. If you’re the guy or gal with the mic, you have a responsibility to make the show as safe a space as possible.
Basically, I just think people shouldn’t be assholes. It’s pretty hard to be an asshole, you kinda have to try.

What's your biggest gripe with the punk scene?

There is this weird thing within punk where people think that since the community is counter-culture that it’s immune to things like racism, homophobia and sexism. I’m constantly disappointed in the lack of respect for consent in our community. People need to start talking about sex in meaningful and open ways. Women shouldn’t feel shame, and men shouldn’t be misogynistic pricks, intentionally or otherwise. I guess the punk community might be a slight step above the rest of the world when it comes to this stuff, but it’s a very, very small step. People should work towards making sure everybody is as comfortable as possible being at a punk show. If you see or hear some bullshit, call it out.

What are some of your biggest influences outside of music?

Probably brunch. Brunch is the best of meals, and we know how to do it in the south! There is this place called 821 in Richmond, and it’s just the best thing ever. Breakfast burritos and $2.50 mimosas available until 5pm every day. Brunch forever!!!

 What else does the future hold for Sundials?

This summer will see us releasing a split 7” with Tatlins Tower, as well as a split 7” with Hold Tight!. After When I Couldn’t Breathe is out we’re going to tour a whole bunch. US and Europe for sure, Japan and Russia if they’ll take us! *wink wink

 Thanks so much for your time, is there anything else you’d like to add?

Move to Richmond! I feel like I have a responsibility to let awesome people know how awesome it is here. We’ve got a river, record stores, brunch, punks...what else do you need?!