By Poppy Tohill
For such a new band, Sundrones have already made some major waves both in their hometown of Brooklyn, New York and abroad. Forming in January 2016, this east-coast quartet have embraced a guitar-heavy swagger, raw urgency and the melodic heart-on-the-sleeve songwriting reminiscent of the late 50’s.
Following the release of their debut single ‘Kill Me Baby,’ which has stacked up an impressive 400,000+ Soundcloud plays alongside hitting #3 on the Soundcloud alt rock chart, I had the privilege of recently catching up with lead singer-songwriter Joshua Moran. Intrigued to find out more about the mysterious up-and-comers, Moran filled us in on all there is to know about Sundrones.
Hey! Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions! You’re our favourite musical discovery of the year so far, but for those that don’t know.. Can you tell us - Who are Sundrones, how did they come to be about and what is your mission?
I met Greg (Guitarist) in New York City and we just started demoing for fun, then it grew from there. Honestly none of us thought this band was going to get a shot. We are the antithesis of what’s considered “Now.” There’s a lot of great underground bands struggling to get to the surface, so I feel pretty lucky to have anyone listening..
Our Mission is to promote self worth, individuality, and hopefully get people back into guitar driven music.
Of course, I’ve got to ask the classic name question...‘Sundrones.’ What is it and where did the name come from?
Drones are constantly being painted negatively in mainstream media. I came across an article about how bad the pollution was getting in certain parts of China. In fact, in some regions smog has completely blocked out the Sun. Pollution has gotten so bad that the government paid to build a huge screen to have a man made digital sunrise and set everyday… The people weren’t using DRONES to spy on their neighbours or cause harm, they were using them to try and fly above the smog to see the actual sun..
Also congratulations on all of the success you’ve already achieved! Are you happy with the public’s reaction towards ‘Kill Me Baby’ thus far and do you have a funny story about the first time you heard it in public at all?
Thanks! We are a really new band so I’m trying to check my expectations and just enjoy playing music. The first time I heard “Kill Me Baby’ in public was at a coffee shop in Brooklyn. It was pretty early and I just sort of looked around and sipped my coffee like what the fuck!?
Talking about ‘Kill Me Baby’. Can you tell us a little bit more about the meaning and backstory of the song?
I think I’ve been quoted saying this before, but it’s the best way I can describe it.
It’s about our willingness to put ourselves through unnecessary hardships only for a surface connection.
It’s an amazing song and clearly already helping you build an international fan base. Was there any particular reason as to why you chose ‘Kill Me Baby’ to be your debut track?
Thank you. I guess it's those 50’s pop melodies and big guitars. I don’t know, I was probably listening to Pinkerton or something that week (laughs)
The video for the single is also incredible. How much creative input did you have in the planning and overall finished product?
My friend Phil did the video. We talked a lot about it and definitely collaborated, but at the end of the day Phil and Chris (The DP) just crushed it.
So how does the songwriting & recording process work for Sundrones?
It really depends on the song. With “Kill Me Baby”, Greg started playing the intro/verse guitar bits and the melodies and lyrics just popped into my head. I think we wrote and recorded it that day (laughs)
We’d love to see you perform here in New Zealand one day. Do you currently have any plans to tour the States or tour internationally throughout 2016?
We are planning on releasing an EP this summer, so I think the plan is to tour that for a while, so hopefully we can make it out there.
Last but not least, who are some of your biggest musical influences and if you could write with one artist who would it be and why?
I’m really influenced by Del Shannon, Buddy Holly, The Turtles, Pavement, Pixies, Daniel Johnston, Buzzcocks, REM, etc. There’s some newer stuff I’ve been listening to also, like - Ice Age, Thee Oh Sees and Fat White Family.
If I could write with anyone it would be Elliott Smith (RIP). His records helped me through some tough times and musically he’s unparalleled… and by write I mean try to keep up with him! (laughs)
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