How did Naked Giants come together and how has the band evolved from when you started to now? When you started were you ever thinking you'd be going on tour or releasing any material?
Grant and myself (Henry) have been finding peace in the jam since we were 14/15 years old. We picked up Gianni shortly after sharing a bill with his old band, Lemonhead, in 2014. The dream has been to bring joy and hope to those who feel that rock and roll has been absent in our generation up until this point. Touring has been and I'm sure will continue to be a surreal privilege that I can not take for granted. Playing with a diverse group of musicians my whole life, one theme is common from jazz to jam-band to hip-hop to worship to indie rock: Every musician I've had the pleasure of drumming with wishes to travel and share their craft around the world. The fact I get to be a part of that still blows my mind.
Is there a particular track on the EP that really strikes you as being a favorite or one that fans just have to start with? Is there any track with a special backstory? I love "Pyramids" but also everything.
My personal favourite is the track "Stoned" which will be released with the EP October 14. When in the studio, our producer Dylan Wall suggested we slow down the BPM like 10 clicks and really work on making it a groovy-ridin'- tune. That made a huge difference and I think really works nicely as a counter piece for the rest of the tracks on the record. There's also a lot of cool aux percussion happening that makes me smile too.
Who are some of your influences and inspirations for this record or as a band?
When we were putting together the songs for R.I.P. EP we had a lot of Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall, White Stripes, Led Zeppelin, and Hendrix busting through our headphones... basically the quintessential rock and roll prophets to any teenagers in a basement.
Seattle is killing it with the bands and has the city influenced your music in anyway?
Well, when it rains here in Seattle we like to play music that warms us up. We drink a healthy amount of coffee so the caffeine jitters are definitely present in the drum work (speaking for myself). Going to a show in Ballard or Capitol Hill or Belltown or SoDo will get you in the mood to meet some friends, take some pictures on your disposable camera, and get into whatever band is playing, even if you've never heard of them. I believe our live show has been well catered to the energy we wish would be present at only the best rock and roll shows. I'd like to think we don't travel and perform to show up and not be note worthy. We try our best to make everybody feel a little wiggle in their booties!
Now that the EP will be out and you're about to hit the road what's next? Are you working on anymore material?
Rock and roll is an american art form stemming from the jazz created by slaves in New Orleans roughly a century ago. It was an act of creative expression during dark times of struggle for a nation. We owe every piece of free form groove to those who wished that their was euphoria within musical collaboration. In that moment, nothing hurts. In that moment, you listen and react simultaneously with one another. In that moment, the performer, the listener, everybody feels together. The next piece of what Naked Giants brings to sound waves will be in recognition and admiration and experimentation of what humans can do to spark emotion and passion within one another.
and for fun
Describe Naked Giants using emojis
If there was an emoji of Hendrix riding a phoenix into a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oates... that'd be pretty sweet. Either that or the slice of pizza.
What's the official Naked Giants pizza
This is awkward...Either the "Giovanni" from Tutta Bella, or the "Agog Primo" from Pagliacci.
You're curating a festival, what 5 bands would be on your lineup?
Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio
Earth Wind and Fire
Rage Against the Machine circa 1993
What snacks are coming on tour?
Take 5 bars
Secret Aardvark Hot sauce