Ep 42: A Place to Bury Strangers on keeping their process interesting through improvisation
*Photo by Ebru Yildiz. This episode is brought to you in partnership with Desert Daze Music Fest. Get your pass now! *
Hannah and I had the pleasure of interviewing A Place to Bury Strangers – Oliver Ackerman, Dion Lunadon, and Lia Simone Braswell – at Desert Daze Festival in October. Being at a festival, you’ll notice the background sound is a bit loud but we did our best. APTBS is well-known as one of the loudest and nicest bands around. Those two may not always go together but it all makes sense when you meet them.
If you’re not familiar with APTBS, the heavy, atmospheric, shoegaze/rock band was first founded in 2002 by David Goffan and Tim Gregorio. Oliver joined shortly after and became lead songwriter after Goffan departed. The group has seen a rotating cast of characters led by Oliver ever since, with Dion joining in 2010 and Lia joining a few years ago. Oliver also founded the effects pedal company, Death by Audio, and the Brooklyn DIY venue by the same name that notoriously closed down when Vice bought their building marking the beginning of the end of the DIY era in NYC.
In this episode, we talk about:
- Their setup for improvising songs
- The inspiration for song names they make up for the ones they improvise live
- How they sustain their energy on an incredibly busy tour schedule
- The value of and importance in changing up the songwriting process
- Injuries sustained on stage
- Taking risks and experimenting to create unique and meaningful experiences for people
- The balance of importance between the meaning of lyrics vs their phonetics and how sometimes you just need one to be right
- The meaning of life
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- A Place to Bury Strangers
- Death by Audio Effects
- The old DBA DIY venue
- One of their live shows
- The APTBS KEXP session (a must-watch)
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