Sunday, December 6, 2009

She's the girl with the catapult in tow!

The Brooklyn music scene has made quite the name for themselves this year with bands like Vampire Weekend and The Virgins. One of these bands I've been lucky enough to sit down with recently is Elizabeth & The Catapult.

Breaking indie hearts everywhere, the sweet talents coming from the trio are winning fans all over the country. They dropped their debut full length album "Taller Children" on Verve Records and have been feeling the success. Lucky for me, Elizabeth took some time to sit down and talk to me while busy both preparing for the show and actually reworking some songs for their live set that night in Boston, MA. We talked about everything from the difference between paying to record an album on their own to the "luxury" of being able to choose who they wanted to work with to what Elizabeth thinks she would be doing if she weren't playing music and the effect or no effect going to Berklee has had on her career.

I know you guys are from the New York area so how was it to start the tour off with a home town show?
That was really fun you know. It was interesting because we had just played at the Music Hall in Williamsburg recently and that was like all of our people and it was really really fun and then this time was a packed audience. I mean there were definitely some people who were fans of ours. There were just a lot of little girls. It's a good market for us because we're kind of immature and very childish for our age.

What's your favorite part of touring?
I'd say just the amount of time that you have on the road to read, knit, watch dvds and writing so it's a good excuse for me to be myself for four hours of the day. Be lazy basically.

I know you guys personally financed your first EP. How has it been different since you signed to Verve?
Um, well one sweet part of the deal is that we got to work with whoever we wanted too. It's kind of a dream come true. We asked them and they were like "Yeah sure work with him". That was a bit different.

How do you go about the songwriting process?
I'll just come up with an idea like while in the bathtub, or in the car, or you know just eavesdropping on some one's conversation and then I'll try to flesh it out. If I'm in the city, I'll play it on a piano when possible. Then I'll bring the song to the band and we'll rock it out, construct it together.
What's your dream venue to play?
I'd definitely say like a sweet church. We haven't played in a church with amazing acoustics yet. I think we actually play a synagogue on this tour. I've always wanted to just be in a big, spiritual venue.

Your band is actually all Berklee grads. Did being in a such a big music school affect your band's style?
I hope not. Yeah, I went to Berklee for film school and then when I graduated, I graduated with like a fake degree to get out early. Um, by the end I was just singing a lot and doing songs. I don't know if I really went the path I was supposed to at Berklee, but I mean I met my band at school so it's a good thing.

Taller Children just came out this year and it's your first full length. How has the reception been so far?
It's been great. It's been better then I expected it, people seem to like it.

Who are your musical influences maybe personally or as a band?
Um, for the band as a whole, we all really like David Byrne and the classic songwriters like Tom Waits, Tom Petty and Bob Dylan. Right now, I'm listening to a lot of Dirty Projectors. I love Neko Case's most recent stuff.

If you weren't in Elizabeth & The Catapult, what do you think you would be doing?
That's a really good one. I always wanted to be a marine biologist. So maybe something definitely like in journalism or something where I was in a room by myself a lot writing. I mean, I'm someone who loves that.

What's your favorite treat?
I really like smores. Especially if you can get them at like an actual restaurant, it's always really exciting.

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