By: Lindsy Carrasquillo
The Pauses are a three-piece indie rock band from Orlando,Florida that uses electronics elements. We got to talk to the band’s singer, Tierney Tough, about their upcoming new record, inspirations and how to get involved in your local scene. The band will be playing in Gainesville on July 25 when they open for Cindy Wilson of the B-52’s at High Dive.
Can you tell us a bit about how the band started?
We have been a band since about 2008 or 2009. My bandmate Jason and I were in a band together previous to this that kind of fizzled out and the singer moved back home to Richmond. We didn’t break up but we were definitely not getting back together anytime soon. I just started writing songs and sending them over to Jason and we would work on them together and eventually after searching high and low for a drummer, we found our drummer Nathan. We played our first show in 2009 I think.
How do you think the process for writing and recording your albums has changed over time?
We just finished up our second record and I would say that we have learned a lot in that time that we’ve had off from the first record. We’ve planned more time and we weren’t trying to crunch everything into seven days like we did with our first record which was king of insane but we were on a budget so we could only do so much. This time we went up and recorded with J. Robbins in Baltimore again. We would focus on a song a day so we weren’t doing all the drums in one day or all the guitars in one day. That way, each song could kind of breathe and I wasn’t doing vocals all day and just straining my voice. We got to play a lot more with different guitar tones, vocal effects and things like that. There’s no rule book to being in a band, you kind of learn as you go. The more time we gave it, the better outcome we had.
How do your songs typically come together in terms of structure?
We’re pretty isolated. Normally Jason and I will individually write things and send them back and forth. We’ll take it to the rehearsal space and fine tune things with drums and maybe the vocals will change since they’re different in a live setting. It’s usually individual people writing things and then getting postal serviced back and forth.
What inspires you to write?
Everything but it’s usually the people in my life. On the first record, every song was about a different person in my life whether I knew it or not. They’re about relationships, work, etc. I try not to write a lot about relationships and work and all that because it’s a bit of a challenge to try and expand to different topics so it could really just be anything.
What are some themes you explore within the new album?
There’s a heavy architectural theme. I did some design classes back in the day when that first band broke up and it was kind of going through your first break up. Being in a band is kind of like dating someone times four or however many people are in your band. Once that band broke up I thought I’d never do music again but I was really young and I went to school and did design for a little bit. I have a big passion for space and the psychology of how something makes you feel and the different aspects like color theory. I feel like that relates a lot to the human psyche and relationships and I wanted to include a little bit of that within the record. There’s not really one theme, just life themed.
You’ll be on tour with Cindy Wilson in July. What should fans expect from your set?
For this set, I think we’ll pull out a couple of newer songs from the record that we don’t normally play. It’ll be a pretty heavy piano set I guess. We’re playing half of the new record now that’s pretty rock and I think we’ll be adding some of the piano based stuff.
Being from Orlando, how would you describe your local music scene?
I think it’s great. We recently played with this band called Wet Nurse in St. Pete who have been a long-term favorite of mine. They have these beautiful Breeder’s-esque harmonies and it’s so simple and so good. There’s tons of punk bands and there’s a lot happening within the scene. I recommend You Blew It! And Sails as well, they’re probably my top ones.
How can people get more involved in their local scene?
I would say book a show. Especially as someone in a band, just learning how it works. I was a promoter for eight years and there was a promoter before me that would put on the most fun shows and do punk rock bowling. It made me want to get involved in that and it’s how you get to know local bands, promoters and venues. Now, I book all of our shows and I feel like I have a wealth of knowledge and I know how to meet our needs without being timid. It’s a huge learning experience to book a show. Another would be to just go to local shows and check out your local venues. I got into booking through Will’s Pub in Orlando. I reached out to Will and asked if he needed any help since the original location closed and they were reopening. Luckily, he did and I started working the door and maybe less than a year after that, I helped put on a festival in a few different venues. I guess I did a good enough job to where he wanted me to be the talent buyer.
What is the most important lesson you’ve learned since being in the music industry?
I think just being upfront and very transparent. Tell people what you need and what you don’t want. There’s a lot of vagueness and expectations. Bands don’t always know how to communicate those things and they may get to a show and be disappointed. That’s something you learn over time.
twitter & instagram: @thepauses