At the end of my recent interview with SeepeopleS band leader Will Bradford, he mentioned that before me he'd spoken to Fox Radio News in St. Louis.
Knowing that, it explains why, when I asked about the influences for their latest EP, "HATE," he cautiously said, "Certainly what's going on in the world today had a big part of it. It's impossible to ignore and is the biggest elephant in any room these days."
Of course, upon listening to the songs on "HATE," the message becomes clear immediately. It's no wonder that his hesitation from the previous interview carried into the beginning of ours. Bradford and SeepeopleS challenge the current administration and the power of the presidency on "New American Dream."
I want to be the president and kill everyone
I want to be the president who drops all our bombs
If I was the president we would have so much fun
If I was the president we would black out the sun
While what's going on in the world today plays a large role in the EP, SeepeopleS' partner EP, "LOVE," has a less political viewpoint. "Shangri La La" has a bouncy, beachy feel you can't help but dance to, while "Your Sad Story" slows it down for a relatable story of lost love.
"When I'm driven to write music is when I'm feeling hot about something," Bradford says. "For me at least, it's sort of my way of resolving that original emotion. It's sort of going through the thought process of what this emotion means, getting it out of the emotional realm and back into a cerebral place where I can think about it clearly. I'd probably be a hot mess if I didn't write music."
With the themes of love and hate on SeepeopleS' most recent recordings, the two EPs balance each other out, which make for a dynamic and engaging live performance.
"I like to think of it as a thought-provoking party. It's definitely an energetic show," Bradford says. "Being able to just enjoy playing a bunch of music and enjoy the sounds of it, but at the same time not shutting the brain off completely. Still maybe absorb some of the message."
Bradford loves playing live and believes there's an honesty and realness to it. You're dealing with what's happening in that moment.
"When you record music, you're in control of time. You can do over when you mess up. It's a lot like social media. You can present that perfect thing you aspire to be. With live music, you are kind of giving those moments away."
While the band describes themselves as anti-genre, think indie rock blended with electronic and psychedelic influences to create an edgy and experimental guitar-driven rock 'n' roll sound.
"Genres come with expectations and they have heavy connotations. The point of SeepeopleS was to make a band that wouldn't have to own up to exceptions and to do whatever we so choose."
Thursday May 11, 8pm
51 NW Greenwood Ave., Bend