Chains: A Candid Conversation
October 6, 2008
Last Wednesday, my
friend suggested we attend L Magazine’s Battle
of the Bands in Williamsburg and I let out a yawn
before saying, "‘I guess." I am
not sure what prompted me to go, but perhaps somewhere
in my cynical self remains an ounce of faith and
a sputter of hope that I would stumble across a
band that would kick my ass.
Ladies and gentlemen, my attention
was not only held, but the music of The Royal Chains
leaped off stage and viciously attacked the audience
sending numerous shocks through the system. Where
did this band come from? More importantly –
where are the going (and can we please tag along)?
Rarely does a three-piece
arrive with such polished force that they threaten
to shake - borderline possess - a fan’s very
soul. The Royal Chains consist of Adam Roddick (lead
& guitar), Mikey Stefanov (drummer) and Dan
Lawley (bass guitar). Adam Roddick, has a voice
capable of scratching through the current skepticism
of New York City’s rock scene while presenting
a nostalgic quality reminiscent of earlier pop sensations.
Originally, I had planned to meet
Mr. Roddick for a cup of coffee, notebook and pen
in hand, but ended up walking with the musical mastermind
over to The Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory to indulge
in one scoop of chocolate. It was one of the oddest,
but most beloved interviews I have experienced.
I scream, you scream, everyone will scream over
Adam Roddick, Dan Lawley
and Mikey Stefanov
The Royal Chains
Weise: It’s always interesting to hear
how bands describe their music. How do you describe
The Royal Chains’ sound and what are your
We make bitter-sweet love songs with 60's melodic
pop sensibilities and au currant angst and neuroses.
Our influences are: skyrocketing rents in NYC, drugs
and alcohol, other people's music, and books. There
might be a few others that I’ve left out.
Weise: Books, eh? I didn’t know rockers
Ok. You got me. I cannot read. This is another good
example of "gotcha" blogging.
Weise: I am quoting you. Moving on, where
do you see your music going? What is the future
vision? What is your 5-year plan?
We see our music going to the movies, hanging out
with its friends, and watching TV.
Weise: You witty little….
Ahem… As far as The Royal Chains’ future
vision, we'd like to introduce our music and positive
energy to as many people as possible. The five year
plan is to support ourselves and our friends solely
through our music (read: no more "real"
jobs). Our 50-year plan is to "remain flexible”
and hope that people give us a chance to make them
Weise: Give me a fun fact to throw out there…
Currently, we are the only beardless band working
in NYC. Oh… and I love pirates.
Weise: What is your opinion on the current
musical landscape in New York City?
It's far too competitive and far less cooperative
than we'd like to see (not to mention basically
non-existent at this point). It's imperative that
bands stop trying to hide fans from each other,
pull our resources, and actually build a legit scene
made of real people who like music and want to have
Weise: Interesting concept… do you
think it’s realistic that bands would put
egos aside to come together in an artist collective?
The simplest way would be by going to see other
band's shows (and have fun while there) and also
to work together to create "events" where
the entire bill is made up of bands (could even
be other types of artists) who know and support
each other. This way, it's more of a "destination,"
as opposed to a stop-off on your way somewhere else.
Personally, after watching this
band steal the spotlight (Listen to "No Love
in Your Punches" and try to resist dancing),
I believe it is safe to say that The Royal Chains
are capable of creating a one-stop destination to
this island by offering a breath of electrified
air to our generation’s polluted and under
stimulated airwaves. It’s gritty gutsy music
that is worth a listen.
Translation: Put you dancing heels
on and get ready to rock out.
For upcoming shows (including
CMJ) and more information, please visit: http://www.myspace.com/theroyalchains