US - Michigan - Full Moon 111 - 10/17/05
Q & A with Auburn Lull
Just when I think I've had enough of Auburn Lull's music, there's something that always draws me back. Their three full-length releases are so beautiful that I can't leave them on the shelf for long.
I emailed Auburn Lull with some lame query about their heavenly effects set-up, and struck up a conversation with the multi-instrumentalist Jason Kolb. Jason kindly agreed to take part in a short Q & A for Luna Kafé, so here it is:
Luna Kafé: 1. You've just released your new compilation
Regions Less Parallel. How did that record come about?
Auburn Lull: It wasn't really our idea at all, but apparently the folks at Darla [Records, Auburn Lull's label] were getting a lot of questions about our older out-of-print records and they asked us to put it together. We took our old masters and some unreleased stuff out to New York and Andrew Prinz (Mahogany) put it all together chronologically for us.
The Dual Group EP material was sort of problematic, because the original master was actually mastered at the wrong speed, so it was always slower and in a lower key than it was supposed to be! We could have fixed it for Regions Less Parallel and made it correct, but we decided to leave it the way it was originally released. It was weird to listen to all that stuff again, but it's nice to have all in one place now.
Luna Kafé: 2. Your albums Alone I Admire and Cast from the Platform are two of my favourite records. Each is rich and satisfying every time I listen to them. How do you experience your music?
Auburn Lull: I think we just try to build these structures that have enough depth to make each subsequent listen a different experience, but overall we ultimately want to experience a feeling of aural travel - like an aural high. I'm kind of the weird one in the band though, because once a song or album is done and I get that experience out of it, I really don't listen to it anymore because I'm horribly critical.
Luna Kafé: 3. Two words I can think to describe your music are 'immersive' and 'evocative'. Most music that I could describe in this way conjures images in my mind. If you guys could use your music to work on film soundtracks, which director would you most like to work with and why?
Auburn Lull: A lot of people seem to think we would be perfect for a David Lynch film, which would be pretty cool just because of how rich and off-kilter his films are. Sophia Coppola is another one because she uses a lot of breathing room and depth - and she seems to have good taste in music for her soundtracks. It's hard to pick just one, because the four of us have such different tastes.
Luna Kafé: 4. You work with Andrew Prinz of Mahogany quite a lot. What's your history with him?
Auburn Lull: This is a really hard question to condense because we've worked with him for so long on so many things. We met Andrew when we were all just starting college, which was around the winter of '95-'96 or so. Anyway, my sister was briefly in a band with Andrew's then-roommate, Scott Cortez (of Lovesliescrushing fame), and I used to have to drive her to practice at his house because she was too young to drive. I would kind of mill around and started to get to know Andrew, who was just getting Mahogany together.
This was around the time Auburn Lull was really starting so I exchanged one of our demos for a Mahogany demo and I think we were mutually pretty astounded. From there we became really good friends and our bands were (and still somewhat are) practically joined at the hip. We used to play a lot of live shows together (which always seemed to involve Mahogany's car or van breaking down halfway to the gig) and there were a few occasions where Andrew joined us onstage, and there was also a period where I was in Mahogany. He's a brilliant producer, designer, and a good friend, so it's hard not to work with him.
Luna Kafé: 5. I imagine that trying to translate your sound live is pretty tricky. Do you guys enjoy playing live? How does your music work when presented in this way?
Auburn Lull: Well, we all wish we played live more, for one thing. We hardly ever play live, but not because it's hard to do, but because we are all actually living in different cities now - and have been for quite some time. Oh, and we're really unorganized. We actually love playing live and it's not as tricky as it may seem, but I think our sound comes off a bit different, like louder and little more noisy.
Luna Kafé: 6. How big a part of your life is Auburn Lull? What do you and the rest of the band get up to when you're not making music?
Auburn Lull: Not a big enough part, that's for sure. We work on music a lot, but we unfortunately have a lot of other stupid shit going on too - I feel like I do at least. Jason Wiesinger, our drummer, is like the perpetual graduate student, he's been working on getting his doctorate for way too long. Sean's situation is actually pretty cool, he restores old European cars and tinkers with old electronics and things. He's actually fixing up an old Citroen DS21 for himself - which is totally insane. Eli and I are both sort of drifters; after we graduated from college we both had lots of different and often meaningless jobs and have sorted of floated from place to place - just trying to plot the next move and 'figure it all out'.
Luna Kafé: 7. Where next for Auburn Lull?
Auburn Lull: A new album next year and some subtle changes in direction. Hopefully we'll live less like hermits and play out more.
Copyright © 2005 Tim Clarke
Photo copyright © Bryan C. Nielsen