interview: Casper Skulls
Taking some time out of their recent touring schedule, which includes opening for PUP, Casper Skulls chatted with TGE about touring, fictional ghosts, and dream jobs.
The Grey Estates: Of course, I have to start by asking how tour has been?! What's it been like opening for PUP? And how did it feel to get that tour?
Casper Skulls: We’re so very excited and grateful to have been asked to be part of this tour. The thoughtfulness and attention to detail that PUP and their team have put into it is absolutely incredible. Ratboys are our new bffs and everyone is so happy and supportive. I’m tearing up.
What are some of the tracks you've been playing on tour? I believe you mentioned playing a very dark song during your Pittsburgh stop. How did you decide which tracks to play, and which ones are your favorites to play live?
We’re playing a handful of our new songs on this tour and a couple from our 2017 release Mercy Works. The song I think you are referring to is called Witness which will be on our new record we are currently recording. It was actually very difficult for me to play at first because of the origin story behind it. Sometimes it can be difficult to separate myself from it. I think we all easily agree that our favourite song to play live is called “The Mouth” and will also be on the next record. It’s broken up into the oddest timings and really fun to play.
What is the Casper Skulls must-have tour items?
On our last tour we played a show in Cleveland and noticed there was an Aldi grocery store there. We all purchased the same water container but different colours. I’d say our water containers are very important to us. One time I thought I lost mine and I actually got so upset it was ridiculous. I think it’s just sentimental now.
What are you working on currently, and what can fans expect next? I believe a new album is due this year? Have you been performing any songs from that?
We started recording our new record before we left and locked down the drums. When we get back we have more time booked in June to finish it up. The songs are very different from what was previously released. To me it’s the most important thing I have ever made because a lot of the songs are about my childhood and growing up in a small mining town with ties to an even smaller town outside of it where my stories (songs) are coming from. Places that don’t necessarily have a big spot light on them but knowing that they exist and that they carry these enormous weights of history, events and ancestry are huge for me. Things that know no kindness. Even the ugliest stories, reclaiming trauma, turning it into artwork.
Since your band name is Casper Skulls, what fictional ghost is your favorite?
We do like our ghouls... Patrick Swayze in Ghost as a ghost seems to be yelled around the van right now as I asked the gang and so I’m sticking to it.
What would the title of the Casper Skulls Netflix documentary be?
Securing The Free Chipotle Comp: The Casper Skulls Story
We’ve had some good luck at Chipotle...
What did each of you want to be when you grew up?
Aurora: specifically either an entomologist or ballerina (age 3)
Fraser: pro wrestler (age 4)
Melanie: a bumble bee (age 5)
Neil: NBA player (age 5)
In celebration of your tour with PUP, what kind of pup is your favorite? I say all the pups.
Lulu which is Fraser’s new husky pup. She’s so beautiful and has the bluest eyes.
What are four things that inspire the band? Can be food, weather, anything.
Neil and I are inspired by a lot of films. The Mercy Works album cover itself was inspired by the 1964 film Woman In The Dunes which is a Japanese new wave film that we just absolutely love. The video for Lingua Franca was our own dress up version of films like Badlands and Bonnie and Clyde. We spend a lot of time digging through the criterion collection and making lists to watch.
For this new record I’m inspired by my upbringing and family. Sometimes you can dig around for all the inspiration in the world but really everything you are looking for maybe already happened to you and is currently floating around in your guts.
If you were curating a Casper Skulls Day Fest, what bands would be on it?
Smut from Cincinnati
Lonely Parade from Montreal/Sudbury
Spirit of the Beehive from Philly
Ratboys from Chicago
Empath from Philly
These are some of the most road dawging, hardest working bands out there and incredible humans we love very much.
What's the dream Casper Skulls merch item?
I’ve always wanted to make some Casper socks. I think I’m going to do that very soon. Long ones to play crosswords in.