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Interview: Bubbles Erotica

First things first, tell us about the history of Bubbles Erotica and your new album.

PHIL:  Bubbles Erotica formed in the summer of 2010.  For the first year or so we played shows primarily as a System of a Down cover band.  We began writing our own songs shortly after and released a 3-song demo that we recorded ourselves in 2012.  We continued to write songs and play more shows, and released two more singles/music videos in 2013.  We then went into the studio and recorded a 4 song EP titled Elephants Never Forget which we self-released in 2014.  We made 2 music videos and played a ton of shows in support of that EP for all of 2014 and 2015.  The bulk of 2016 was spent writing and recording our debut self-titled full length, which just came out on May 9th.  We already released two music videos in support of the album, and are currently working on another to come out in June, as well as another to come out later in the summer.

What is the intended sound and image of Bubbles Erotica?  How did you all come together and develop your image and sound?

PHIL:  First and foremost, we don’t care to follow the rules.  We don’t care to emulate or imitate what has been done before and what is typically expected of rock bands. Our logos, band photos, music videos, and album artwork tend to be very colorful and vibrant with a palette that consistently uses lots of pinks, purples, blues and such.  We don’t really care to come off as super aggressive, super “masculine”, or as super dark individuals.  Our name alone can be perceived as risqué, trashy, effeminate and not very rock and roll.  Our live show can sometimes be considered too silly and theatrical.  We’ve been told that our music is sometimes too wild and too hard to categorize therefore it’s too hard to sell.  But, we don’t care to sound, look, and be like what is trending in rock music or what has worked in the past.  This has given us some difficulties, but people are slowly getting it.  That’s not to bash anyone who may continue these traditions we observe in rock.  Personally, we;re just not into it.  Our main intention with our sound and imagery is to be ourselves and to be as forward thinking as possible about our art.  As far as how did we develop this?  I think it’s because we always desire to have an artistic outlet to express ourselves creatively.  We want to be more than just your average rock band and not just follow trends and traditions.  We want to be unique and different like a lot of the type of bands we grew up listening to.

We hear a lot of diverse influences in your music, what bands do you consider to be your greatest inspirations?

We all have different musical inspirations and influences, everything from Pink Floyd to The Faceless, from Wu-Tang Clan to System of a Down, from QOTSA to Slayer.  We’re all into different things.  It’s difficult to specifically say whom or what are our biggest inspirations are, as we try to pull influences from everything we enjoy to create something that we feel is different and unique to us.  When the four of us are in a room together, you get the sound you hear.  Plus, we’re always trying to push ourselves to try different things.

How does your musical style reflect your different personalities?

PHIL:  I am very much into rap music and punk, so I like writing aggressive yet beat oriented music.  Mike is into classic rock and hip-hop so he adds a lot of texture and depth to his tone and his playing.  Colin is very much into tech metal and progressive rock so he brings a lot of diversity in his song writing choices and his tone.  Brad is into a lot of contemporary rock and pop punk so he always keeps us grounded in what we are doing and the songs he writes.  There tends to be a lot of push and pull when it comes to our song writing, mostly due to our different personalities, but it makes up our sound.  It always is inherently Bubbles Erotica.

What song do YOU consider to be your best on the album?

PHIL:  My personal favorite changes as time goes on, but I tend to stick with “Humbaba”.  It’s a wild song that combines a lot of different genres.  Plus, I am Assyrian so I enjoy the Mesopotamian mythology connection.

BRAD:  I think our best song on the album is “Humbaba”. The song really came to life in the studio with the gang vocals, horns, etc. A friend of mine told me that the guitar riffs and drums in “Humbaba” gave him goose bumps – that was music to my ears.

MIKE:  Can’t really say. Each week I find myself jamming a song more than the others.  Right now, “Operation Condor” is my favorite.

COLIN:  For me personally, I think “Cicada Arcade” is the song that represents us best. It’s spastic and dynamic, and constantly changing. I feel like our goal in this band is to be very dynamic and not rest in one style or genre. This song shows the listener what they should expect from us sonically.

What is the craziest live show you’ve ever done?

PHIL:  Funny enough, the craziest thing I have ever done was at our first show ever, back in 2010, when I jumped off the balcony into the audience at the Abbey Pub.

BRAD:  Abbey Pub, October and December 2010. They were our first two shows as a band. The place was pretty wild those nights. I remember our first show, Phil climbed up on the balcony and did a stage dive from there. The second time we played at the Abbey, one of the first things the door guy said to us when we got there to load in our gear was, “You guys are Bubbles Erotica, right? Yea.. no jumping off the balcony this time.”

COLIN:  We have had a lot of crazy experiences on stage. One that stands out is when our singer Phil climbed the balcony of The Abbey Pub in Chicago and jumped into the waiting arms of the crowd below. When we finished our set and the manager of the club came running up on stage and gathered us around, I really thought he was about to scold us and possibly even ask us to leave. He just looked at us all and says” that was f*cking awesome! When can you guys come back?”  Security wasn’t a big fan of it though.

MIKE:  The next upcoming show. Be there. 

Big Festival or late night club?  Why?

PHIL:  Both have their pros and cons.  Seeing shows?  Night club.  Playing shows?  Festival.  The bigger the audience, the bigger the performance has to be.

What is more important to you, in interacting with your fans, Facebook or Twitter?

PHIL:  We tend to get a better response and interaction from Facebook.  Plus, with video really becoming an integral part of the Facebook platform, we enjoy being making videos that gives our fans a better insight to who we are individually and our band’s personality collectively.  Plus, who wants to be limited to 140 characters?  I think we have a little more say about ourselves than that.

Can music save the mortal soul or is just a good backbeat to your life?

PHIL:  It definitely saves the mortal soul.  I think music has saved everyone personally in this band at one point or another.  Sometimes, a song or an album is just so in-tune with what I am going through, whether it’s good or bad.  It can give meaning and clarity to my life.

Buy Bubbles Erotica online HERE

Connect with Bubbles Erotica:
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About Colette Josef

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