Q&A: The Pines' Benson Ramsey and David Huckfelt
|Photo by Darin Back|
Their latest CD, Tremolo, released this weekend, finds Ramsey experimenting with vocal vibrato and falling in and out of time with the rest of the music, adding another dreamlike nuance to this band's already dense and foggy mystique. We sat down with Ramsey and Huckfelt recently to talk about their new album, their relationship with local label Red House records, and their position in the local music community.
Benson Ramsey: It's not meant too literally. The word refers to a musical effect, of wavering in and out, and I think that fits us. We had taken some time off and we were in and out of some different realities. I think time off is just as important as time on, and words said are just as important as words not said, and notes played on the guitar --notes you don't play are sometimes louder and more important than notes you do play. Half of the day you are asleep, and half the day you are awake, so there's a tremolo between dreams and your walking life, your waking life. I think that was the idea.
David Huckfelt: I think that applies to the record lyrically, too, the imagery in the record. This record has felt pretty dreamlike. I don't think there's too much about it that's very literal. You can't follow it the way you would a story-song or a pop song. It just kind of hits you and goes away and comes back. Mysterious.
Can you give me a rundown of how the new album came together?
Ramsey: The new record came about in the spring of '09. We conceived it in March and recorded it in May, after some time off. The whole goal with the record was to have it be fairly spontaneous and live in the studio, as a snapshot of that time period with our friends that we were playing with.
Huckfelt: Most of the songs were written in that short period of time, March and April, and then recorded in two days, a day and a half, and mixed in a day. Very quickly.