Buildings: We black out at shows; that's when it's really good
|Courtesy of the Artist|
Buildings wants you to know that it doesn't matter. They prefer not to over-think things, and would encourage you to do the same.
The band is making a departure from their previous sound with It Doesn't Matter, being debuted at tonight's EP release show at Icehouse. "We didn't talk about it," drummer Travis Kuhlman says of their newfound, more straightforward approach. "We just did it. We got sick of doing the old shit that we did."
The EP opens with "...Because It Doesn't Matter." Vocalist Brian Lake snarls out the lyrics with a scorn and vitriol reminiscent of a young, disgusted Kurt Cobain [or David Yow]. The song reads like a casual fuck you, a flick of the wrist. There is a certain element of grunge, yet the math-tinged calculation of earlier Buildings music remains. It is a quick, violent burst of noise carried by Joe Clark's dark driving bassline.
Clark is the most recent member to join the band. It took ten years after meeting Lake for Clark to finally decide to become a part of Buildings. "I was like well, I'm really bored with my life, and I have no friends anymore, so I'm gonna play bass in a band," he explains. "I just asked and they said yes."
The whole "it doesn't matter" theme of the album is a running joke between bandmates that began with Kuhlman's roommate remarking, "Dude, it doesn't matter. Whatever you do, it doesn't matter. Why are you doing this? Oh, it doesn't matter." They have adopted the phrase as their mantra.
The music video released this week for "...Because It Doesn't Matter" is the epitome of this concept. Directed by Clark, the video depicts Lake as a sort of campy game show host or lounge singer, making graphic gestures with the microphone stand as he sings, then being joined before the garishly patterned curtain by scantily clad women dancing with hula hoops. Kuhlman, unrecognizable behind a thick layer of clown makeup, fails miserably at creating balloon animals so instead feigns hanging himself with the balloons. The spectacle ends in a drunken haze.
"Everyone that I live with got sick because of how much fun we had filming that," says Kuhlman. "We just got sick. We were hammered at noon, filming. The only way I could be a clown on film was to be drunk."
"I had three shots before we started filming. Three shots and like, eight Oreos," Lake adds. "I was good to go."
The second track on the EP, "Gold," is irresistibly catchy. Lake refers to the entire song as one big hook, and Kuhlman calls it the most straightforward song they've ever written. The chord progression throughout the verses is somewhat unnerving, almost off in a way. "Leave everyone you have loved behind...You look so pretty now..." Lake admonishes the listener.
"Gold" is the uncle of a friend of Lake's, who committed suicide. "He was a bastard," Lake says. "He was an asshole. The song is about how you feel sorry for someone when they're dead, but when they were alive you couldn't stand the fucking sight of them."