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|interviewed by robby sumner|
| Interview with Lauren and Shawn
September 8th, 2004
Shawn Decker - Vocals, Guitar
Charlie McArthur - Guitar
Brad Carlson - Bass
Paul Robinson - Drums
Lauren Murray - Piano
Amanda Herzberg - Violin
|E: So Ache / Emelie is an energized hardcore band with a beautifully violent sound--however, it's not a band easily stereotyped. How would you say the group differs from others in its genre?
Lauren: I think the addition of keyboard and violin is the most superficial difference, but musically it goes beyond that. Each player adds something a little different to the mix, something that's not the same as what everyone else is playing. Itís not just "bar chord, bar chord"... and there's definitely an extreme intensity of emotion present in the music
Shawn: Right. And I think subtlety is a big factor. And we all come from such different musical backgrounds. Songwriting is more of a musical evolution than just a group of people learning songs.
E: Is it a different experience than anything else you've done before, musically?
Shawn: Completely. I have been in a couple screamy bands before, but it was so much different. Previously it was very straight to the point. And sometimes I was only doing secondary vocals. I think that must be the main difference for me. But, this arrangement of instruments has been something Iíve been trying to put together for so long. To see it pay off even in the small way it has is the most amazing thing in the world.
Lauren: This is the first time Iíve played in a band. I played in orchestra in high school, but that doesn't even compare to this type of set up.
E: How has the relationship between you two influenced the direction of the songwriting and performing?
Lauren: Since we're engaged and around each other all the time, we're able to bounce ideas off each other at really odd times the creative process isn't limited to practice time. We could be listening to a song and come up with an idea spontaneously. And I think knowing each other so well helps us to communicate our ideas better.
Shawn: Right. And since our relationship is such, there is no offense taken when we're collaborating on something and one of us suggests different ways of putting parts together. But, that pretty much goes for all of the rest of the band too. Itís just that with Lauren and I it could be two or four a.m. and we can still go downstairs and brainstorm. Actually, most of our newest song came together that exact way
E: Was the original plan for the band to have a violin and piano player?
Shawn: Yes. Originally it was Charlie and Amanda and myself. We worked on the songs with the violin and two acoustic guitars. It took entirely too long to find a drummer. Originally Lauren was supposed to play bass in the band, but, upon getting to know her I became aware she played piano, and I knew that it would be much harder to find a pianist than a bass player so, we mutually agreed to assign her to that instrument. As it turns out, she's much better at that anyway. After that came Paul and Brad, and it's been going extremely well since then.
Lauren: I am totally better at piano than bass. Itís true.
E: Is it harder writing songs for a band that breaks the standard musical format?
Shawn: Exhaustingly harder. But, from the first second I put the idea on Charlie we knew we wouldn't compromise. One by one we all came together and the outcome has been amazing for us. Anytime you have more than three or four people in a band it gets that much more complicated, and trying to write with such an unorthodox set of additional instruments has been a challenge we saw coming, but, honestly, still werenít ready for. Itís finally becoming easier and that's a good thing. We still only write about one song a month though, but Iím sure that'll pick up as well.
E: Has the band been successful at playing shows?
Lauren: We've received a really positive response, where people have come up to us afterward and been really excited about hearing more. Which I think is success, since we're reaching more and more people all the time who haven't heard us. We always have a good time and enjoy playing.
Shawn: Exactly. And I guess I could add that maybe that could seem like an odd way to measure a band's success, but that's just what's most important to us. Everyone we've met has been absolutely amazing. Bands, their friends, their fans, their families. Itís been a short stint so far and we have so much to show for it. Praise and support are pretty new to me musically, so, please excuse the naivety of that answer...
E: Is the band part of your plans for the future?
Shawn: Indefinitely. Individually we're all headed in different directions in our day-to-day lives. But, we always make time for this. I strongly feel that this is easily one of the most important things in each of our lives and I know that alone will keep us going. Thereís a long history of friendship behind our band that is strong glue to the band and where we're going.
Lauren: It's a big part of my life, and a big factor in my future. I hope to be making music with this group of people for a long time
E: Well that's it--thanks a lot.
Shawn: Thank you as well. Really. Your time and interest are an inspiration to all of us, Iím sure.