That dreaded time of the week has only gone and arrived again, hasn't it? But before you throw your head into your hands with despair, remember it's not all that bad. Oh, no? Absolutely not, especially when we're just about to serve up another chunky slice of Music Monday pie.
This week we had a chinwag with Constantin V, frontman and raspy vocalist of New York-based indie punk four-piece, Dreamshow, to discuss the music they're making, their standout shows, the important role art plays in their productions and also the current state of the New York music scene.
If you want to find out what Dreamshow are up to next, be sure to check out the all-important social media links after the jump!
For those who’re unfamiliar with Dreamshow, can you introduce yourself and tell us a bit about the music you make?
I've always been bad with introductions- but hi, I'm Constantine V. and I sing and write songs in my band dreamshow. I've been writing songs for about 4 years, experimenting in different genres, but about a year ago I found myself feeling comfortable with how I sounded in a guitar-based context more than in any other kind of songwriting arrangement I'd been working in and began working on a collection of songs which turned out to be my Chasing Control EP - a punk inspired set of tunes.
How did the opportunity to work with Matthew Williams of SHOWstudio come about?
Well, I'm partly managed by a friend who's in the fashion world and who knows Matt through that. He thought we'd make a really good fit as I was putting together this collection of songs but wanted a creative director to help steer some of the image associations - so we had a meeting that was really good. We were sitting across the table from each other at a restaurant and I was using a criminally slow old phone at the time and couldn't email him the song directly for some reason - so I just gave him my phone and headphones and watched him listen to the track right in front of me. He was grooving to it looking slightly away then the song finished and he looked at me like I LOVE that song. So we just took it from there...
Which one show stands out as one of the maddest you’ve ever played and why?
Well, a few weeks ago I played an unannounced show to basically just rehearse the songs in front of whoever was there and I guess word got out that we were playing and a
music exec came to watch, as well as some new and old friends of mine from New York, and some skateboarders. Something about all of their energy made us really gel and I very happily lost it on stage, drenched in sweat by the end. Afterwards we went out to a wild bar and partied, it was just a genuinely fun and exciting night.
How much of a part would you say art plays in your music and vice versa?
There's a purity to visual art, something monastic and austere that I love and appreciate about it. But I don't actually think it directly effects the music itself, like the notes etc. It has this saintly beauty and sadness and when I'm recording I get extremely into this notion of purity and it helps me say no to almost everything.
Have you got any plans for any future collaborations at the moment?
No, haha. But I am going to start working on more music very soon again, which is a kind of collaboration in its own right. But I can't wait to design tour merch and I imagine I'll collaborate with someone for that.
There’s an eclectic mix of imagery on your Tumblr page, who would you cite as some of your favourite visual artists?
My tumblr is supposed to be a loose visual diary of where I'm at with my music and my thoughts on art. The images really do all mean something very specific and important to me - and they relate directly to the music. As far as artists go, an eclectic wide variety would include Leo Gabin, Tracey Emin, Hannah Von Bart, Velazquez, Dan Colen - I'm forgetting everyone I like right now.
What's the current state of the music scene in NY like right now and who are some of the bands, DJs and producers to look out for?
I feel like New York is like the internet: fragmented but with some links. In other words, I don't really see myself as part of a scene per se - but as more of an idea unto myself. For example, in 2002 there were a lot of garage revival acts, nowadays I think its more individuals with their own agendas rather than scenes. Among those individuals in New York, you should listen to porches. And frankie cosmos - they're making such pure and beautiful music, totally uncompromised.