From the big city hustle in Brooklyn, New York down to Charleston, South Carolina, where the only hustle is in the chicken coop, The Films have not let listeners down with their folk infused sophomore release, Oh, Scorpio. Our writer Mike was able to chat with front man Michael Trent (also of Shovels & Rope) via email. Check it out!
TMP: So I understand that The Films is based out of both Brooklyn and Charleston. I’m assuming that different members live in both cities. How does that work with writing and practicing and what not?
Michael: A lot of times we share songs with each other through email, then when it’s time to record we get together and work them out. A lot of work can get done in a short amount of time. Plus it keeps things fresh. As far as practicing goes – we get together for a few days before a tour and work it out. Over-rehearsing is entirely overrated. The beauty is in the spontaneous moments.
TMP: I noticed a substantial change from Don’t Dance Rattlesnake to Oh, Scorpio, both musically and lyrically. Is there a hidden reason behind that? What sparked the change?
Michael: I don’t think any artist wants to make the same record twice. The way you see the world is constantly changing. It’s a natural evolution. There was no Thom Yorke backstage "hissy" or "aha" moment where we made a conscious decision to change the “sound” or anything like that. It’s just the way the songs came out.
TMP: Is there any significance behind the album name (Oh, Scorpio)?
Michael: Yes, but I prefer leaving it up for interpretation.
TMP: Will fans in the U.S. be able to get their hands on a hard copy of Oh, Scorpio or will it strictly remain online to download?
Michael: I’ve got a good feeling about it.
TMP: I’ve noticed you guys have toured quite a bit in Europe, but touring in the U.S. has been pretty minimal. Is there a reason behind that? Will there be any big U.S. tours coming up?
MIchael: We’ve had more opportunities in Europe than we’ve had over here. That's basically what it boils down to. We got to go on a few tours opening for some bands that were having a lot of success over in Europe and along the way convinced THEIR fans to be OUR fans too! Over here we just haven’t had as many of those opportunities. It’s basically who ya know.. Ya know?
No US tours booked as of now, but I’ve got a good feeling about it.
TMP: Do you guys plan on seeking label support, or have you already?
Michael: Honestly we’re not that interested in it. Record labels don’t do much for artists like us these days. We’ve already been in that world and our experience was not too pleasant. A little publicity would be nice though.
TMP: I know a few of the members in the band are a part of side projects, as well. Does this conflict with the intensity of The Films at all?
Michael: The intensity of The Films is never compromised. When we get together it's gonna be what it is. But I think it's good for us to have things going on other than the band. Keeps us balanced and creatively satisfied. Also keeps there from being 25 songs on each Films album that we put out.
TMP: Finally, what are some of your guys' hobbies outside of making music?
Michael: Everyone stays busy with different musical projects.. (side projects, other bands, whatever) - Jake is doing a lot of producer/engineer work in LA. I am raising chickens down here in Charleston. Can't speak for Adam or Kenny, but I think tennis is probably a good guess.
Here's The Films with "Black Shoes" off of their debut album "Don't Dance Rattlesnake"
Posted by Mike Slobom