Eva Hendricks and Dan Shure from Charly Bliss talk about the album Guppy, and how they use music as an outlet for dealing with current politics.
This interview was conducted on May 25, 2018 by Hannah Casey for WGBH, at the Boston Calling Music Festival.
Now you're with Barsuk Records? (Are we saying that right?)
Eva Hendricks: No, we didn't know how to pronounce it for a long time! I feel like even amongst our managers and stuff, there's still some multiple pronunciations.
Do you guys have a favorite label brother?
Hendricks: We grew up listening to so many of the bands that are on Barsuk, so it's hard to pick. Death Cab (for Cutie) are only partly still on Barsuk, but we love them so much. Mates of State — huge fans of... Rilo Kiley was on Barsuk for a minute, and that's my favorite band of all time. OH - Nada Surf, we love... Cymbals Eat Guitars. Honestly, yes -- everybody is our favorite.
Guppy was released with a comic book, can you talk about that?
Hendricks: Yeah. So the release of Guppy was accompanied by a comic book, which we had also done for the relese of our EP Soft Serve. So it just felt like this kind of fun idea to keep going. Also, I feel like as a band we do a lot of stuff to go along with our songs, like pairing with visuals. We did six or seven music videos for this album ,and it just felt like a really fun extension of that. And it was really great to get to work with so many artists we've always wanted to work with with.
In the same vein, you have really cool tour posters and stuff, like the tiger.
Hendricks: Thank you!
You guys are all from Connecticut?
Hendricks: Yes, we grew up in Connecticut, Westport.
Connecticut has lots of great DIY music venues, do you have any stories about that?
Dan Shure: There's a great venue in Westport called Toquet Hall that we all went to growing up, and we played before as a band. I think we did a New Year's Eve show there.
Hendricks: Yes, the Mayor was there!
Shure: The Mayor of Westport was there!
And you guys met doing musical theater?
Hendricks: We met through doing musical theater yeah, when we were like maybe like 11 or 12. And then did musical theater together and were best friends all through high school.
Any favorite musicals?
Hendricks: Every one that we ever did in high school, I think gets me pretty misty when I listen to them. But of the ones we did I would say Guys and Dolls and Little Shop (of Horrors) are probably my favorites. And like every other young musical theater freak growing up in the early 2000s, I of course was obsessed with Wicked. Our mom recently bought me and my sisters tickets to go see Wicked recently, and I was like I'm probably over it at this point, but I was sobbing uncontrollably. The four of us were all just bawling our eyes out.
Hendricks: (To Shure) Do you want to talk about the remix?
Shure: Oh yeah. We play a lot of crazy music in the van on long drives, and we discovered a dance remix of "Defying Gravity" from Wicked. And we were on a drive recently, and Eva had to pee, but we were playing the remake and she was dying laughing. She was begging us to stop.
Can you guys talk about "Turd"? (a single released on November 10, 2016 in protest of Trump’s election)
Hendricks: Yeah well "Turd" was a song that we recorded the first time we recorded Guppy, and it didn't make it to the second cut of the record. But when when Trump was elected, obviously that was just such a such a dark moment. I don't think we'll ever forget what that felt like. Just because it felt like it could never happen and then it did. It was just it was awful. And in the wake of that happening, we really wanted to do something that felt concrete and help raise money, and we did. On this past tour we were able to team up with Plus1.org to raise money at our shows. A dollar from every ticket sold went to Planned Parenthood. So it's been really cool getting to use music as an outlet for dealing with the current crappy political landscape of the time.
(Transcribed and condensed for clarity by Stacy Buchanan)