Locket, Take This To Heart Records’ newest signing, is emotional post punk out of Austin, Texas. The band’s sophomore EP, Never There, Never Was, is due out May 13th. The band took the time to answer some questions while on their way to a special gig – read on to find out more!
I saw on your social media that you have a surprise show with Beartooth tonight. How’d that come about?
It really came about through one of the bands on there, Meraki/Toska, which is an awesome post hardcore band from Huston that we’ve played with a few times. We were getting this house show together for their CD release and a mutual friend, was like “Hey, I have this band that has come through a few times.” He was kind of playing the, “Oh, well, we can’t really say who it is but you have to trust me – it’s going be someone cool” card. At first we didn’t even really know who it was; we just knew it was going be someone really cool. Then we kind of, through deductive reasoning, figured out who’s big enough and crazy enough to play a house show. We knew it was those guys.
The way that show came together speaks to the DIY eithics of the band. What sort of role do they play with Locket?
That’s been our number one mantra since day one. We’re a relatively new band, I mean we’ve only been playing shows since January of last year. We hit the ground running with as many shows as we could so that was our whole idea, trying to make something here that wasn’t here before. There wasn’t really a big, strong DIY scene here in town when we started getting into it last year as far as bands in our genre and pop punk and all the alternative genres – a lot of the stuff in town was real stagnated. There were bands that were opening up for roadshows, but there wasn’t really a strong local presence.
We kind of went headfirst into that. We did all of our first shows at our guitar player’s house and it got to a point where by the third or fourth one we did it was like 100 kids in this house, flying across the ceiling. It was a little unreal. I think our singer got roughed up quite a bit, but it was a good time. Networking DIY as well, with Sundressed and Fossil Youth, helped us where we are now and with the label. We just played shows with them and hung out with them and met with them and kept talking to them. We knew early on that that was something we definitely needed to do to grow as a band in our area. I think it’s working out for us so far.
How has the transition been from being a totally independent band to now jumping on with the label?
It definitely was a little strange for us because it’s just something we never experienced before. Joe has been awesome – I mean we look at him like he’s our big brother and we can hit him up for whatever. He’s been more than welcoming to us on the label. It’s really just nice having direction and support because we’ve done a lot of self-promotion, especially with our first release that they reissued – we made it ourselves. It’s nice to have direction. We’re very open to things and we can trust people to make the right decisions and to guide in the right way. It was the same with the recording process. Working with someone with a lot of direction, who doesn’t really come from DIY, definitely challenged us.
Can you talk a little bit about the writing process and how the songs come together, into the recording process as well?
The writing process just starts as a band together getting in a room and playing and really trying to not worry about where the end of the song is going be. Working through the process towards the next step helps us quite a bit, with writing and getting a lot of diverse styles. In our upcoming EP there’s Smashing Pumpkins happy, kind of grungy rock and then all the way to post rock, delay craziness to pop punk. So the record is pretty eclectic and I think that kind of comes out in the writing process of getting together and not trying to be too limited. It’s nice to have a lot of range. Our vocalist does clean vocals and dirty vocals and we also have another vocalist that does the same too.
The transition to the recording process was awesome. We recorded with Joe Milligan, who was in Anberlin, which is kind of way off from what we’re doing. But he brought an even more eclectic approach to us and he made the process right. It was a lot more creative than the first time. We tracked our first EP in a day and recorded it live to tape, so it was definitely not a creative process. Being open to different ideas and styles and limiting ourselves to one direction has helped us out in the writing process and recording process as well.
How did the album artwork come together? I feel like it gives a particular vibe and I’m curious how it fit in with the creation of the album itself.
The album artwork came out really awesome. Our good friend Mike Philips did it. He took us out into the woods and just made us climb rocks and stuff. We hiked all day in sneakers – it was awful, but it was also super fun and we got a lot of good shots out of it. We really wanted something almost mysterious as far as the cover goes, kind of ambiguous, because that how the record is. There are a lot of things to offer and what you see at first glance it’s not always going be what it is. We never wanted to be stuck to one thing and I think that the open-ended picture frame adds to that as well.
You talked about the mysteriousness of it, which kind of goes along with the title of the album too, Never There, Never Was. Sort of ambiguous but at the same time gives somewhat of a specific message.
Yeah, definitely, and the title is one of the tracks on the album that’s about that kind of same thing. It was literally the last lyric we had for the record and it kind of just stuck. We had a couple other ideas but that really kind of stuck out with us. I like the phrasing a lot, too. I think the phrasing kind of rolls off the tongue pretty cool. You definitely nailed the tone as far as being ambiguous, but having a message.
Thanks so much for taking the time to talk and have fun tonight!
We’ll try to stay as safe as we can without the place coming down. There’s a video of one of Beartooth’s house shows going around where one of the guitar players lights some stuff on fire. We’re hoping it’s not going to be something like that – that wouldn’t so be good. But it should be fun! We’re just excited to take the next step and get our music out there.
Preorder Never There, Never Was via Take This To Heart Records