November 28, 2006

The Little Ones

Lesson one of interviewing: make sure you have fresh batteries! My talk with Edward Nolan Reyes, lead singer for The Little Ones, gets somewhat cut off prematurely, because the batteries were bad and the tape became inaudible. But what I can tell you about them is this: they are a great band that show a lot of promise. Just one listen to their debut Sing-Song will tell you that. It's poppy and slightly trippy and catchy as all get-out, and it's hard not to listen to their music without getting a very big smile on your face! So, in spite of the dead batteries, we got some pretty good information out of Ed.

You first released the EP about a year ago, correct?

We initially self-released it on our own label, Branches Recording Collective, and we put it out ourselves in April of this year.

How did you hook up with Astralwerks?

Pure chance. We had some shows at the Mercury Lounge earlier this year and we played a couple of other shows and they were there, and they came and it kind of came out of that, a chance meeting after we played.

It seems like a somewhat unusual label for you guys to be on.

Yeah, I was as surprised that they were interested as well. But they are a good label, and they were really nice to us, and we felt comfortable with them.

Plus, they're good for giving you momentum on a national level.

Yeah, which we could have done, but it's really, extremely hard to do on your own, financially speaking.

That's true, especially if you're an independently-based band. Have you started working on your full length debut yet?

Yeah, it's going great! We've actually been working on it bit by bit for a while now. Right now, it's going to be a little bit tough, having to schedule things between tours, which we plan to do when we have some time coming up and we hope to have it finished pretty soon.

How did you guys meet up with David Newton?

When we formed the band, we'd recorded ourselves on various tracks and boards, but we decided that we wanted to record some demos at a studio with somebody. My friend Paul, who works at Better Looking Records, suggested David. He has the same vision for our songs that we do. Initially, the songs on Sing Song were merely demos. But then, when we heard them, we really liked them and we decided to release them as they were.

I kind of got the feeling that you guys were bursting at the seems a little bit, like you were on the cusp of going for bigger, louder, more orchestrated sound. Is that something you're envisioning with the full length?

Yeah! I think so. Obviously, we're really proud of the songs on the record, but we were really constrained by time and money. But now, with the label support, we're going to be able to pursue those ideas. I think there will be more orchestrated parts on it. We've already started talking about these things. You'll hear a little more percussion, a little bit more in terms of textures--it'll be really well thought-out.

What I've really enjoyed about Sing Song is that the music seems quite kaleidoscopic, with sounds swirling and tumbling and every time I listen to it, I hear something a little different than the time before. It's definitely a record that grows on you--not in the sense that it's not good upon first listen, but it's just that you hear something new on each consecutive listen.

That's something we tried to do. I've always liked music like that. I can remember hearing records by bands that I liked, but then I'd start to discover new things within the songs, and listening to them over and over again made them blossom more. I want to do that, too, with my music.

At this time on the tape, it becomes rather inaudible, thanks in part to dead batteries! But go and catch them live soon--they'll be on tour in select cities for the next few weeks and in the UK in January. Visit their Myspace for more information on where they will be playing.

The Little Ones' debut Sing Song is out now on Astralwerks

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