Friday, August 15, 2008
Interview (and Ticket Giveaway) with Le Switch
Le Switch is about to release their debut full-length, And Now…Le Switch on the Aquarium Drunkard’s label Autumn Tone. I highly recommend it (see what I wrote about on their Myspace page). The record comes out nationally in September, but LA fans can pick it up at their record release party this Tuesday at the Echo. Joining them will be Nico Stai, Les Blancs and The World Record.
I have two pairs of tickets to give away. Email me [dukeufo at hotmail] and tell me what your favorite LA band is. Please put Le Switch in the subject line.
Here’s an interview with lead singer, Aaron Kyle.
You Set The Scene: So what neighborhood do you claim?
Aaron Kyle: Los Angeles. I don’t really claim a neighborhood. I live in Glassell Park now.
YSTS: You grew up in LA, so that question’s probably tougher for you than it is for most of us….
AK: Yeah, it’s a bit complicated. When I was growing up we moved pretty much every year until we landed in Echo Park for four years. Then we landed in Burbank when I was in junior high. So it’s easiest just to claim LA.
YSTS: Is the rest of the band from LA?
AK: No. Joe and Maria are from New York. Josh is from Northern California and Chris is from Portland.
YSTS: How long have you been playing music?
AK: I’ve been playing in bands for almost 15 years. Kind of crazy.
YSTS: What inspired you to pick up an instrument?
AK: I just wanted to be in a punk band in the early days. The first band I was in wanted to sound like Nirvana, but I wanted to sound like Minor Threat. They kicked me out after our first show at the Coconut Teaszer on the Sunset Strip. I got a high out of singing, so I decided to start my own band.
YSTS: Did you always play guitar?
AK: I actually played bass at first, but put it down after six months because it was boring. I’m self taught. I learn a lot from people who are better than me – like my entire band. Chris Harrison [ed. Note: Le Switch’s bass player] actually taught me a lot. Before I met him, I was an OK guitar player. He’s taught me a lot.
YSTS: How’d you get hooked with the Radar Bros. [Aaron’s been touring as the lead guitarist in the Radar Bros. for the past six months]?
AK: We already played together in Adeline and the Philistines, so when the job opened up, he asked me. I originally met Jim through Todd [ed. Note: Todd Clifford, formerly of Sea Level Records] and I actually met Addy through Todd too. So it all goes back to Todd.
YSTS: Now for the hardball questions. What’s your favorite breakfast spot?
AK: I like a simple breakfast. Nothing fancy. Eggs, bacon, potatoes and toast. Anyone can do that, right. I go to the Coffee Table. But it's rare because I don't usually wake up till 2pm – on the weekends, that is.
YSTS: Your favorite Mexican restaurant?
AK: I like La Parilla for certain things, Costa Alegre for fish Tacos, and the taco truck on Logan for burritos and miscellaneous tacos.
YSTS: Best burger?
AK: The Apple Pan. Runner up is The Bucket.
YSTS: By the way, thanks for turning me onto Apple Pan. That hickory burger kicks ass.
AK: Yeah, it’s tasty. I’ve been going there since I was five. The same people work there.
YSTS: Favorite bar?
AK: Edendale has become my bar of choice. I like it there.
YSTS: Drink of choice?
AK: Beer. I don’t drink anything else.
YSTS: Any particular flavor?
AK: Newcastle. Or Shiner if they have it.
YSTS: What’s your favorite thing about living in LA?
AK: The weather, for sure.
YSTS: The most frustrating thing about living in LA?
AK: The traffic. Driving in LA can be one of the most frustrating things about this city.
YSTS: Favorite movie of all time?
AK: It’s a Wonderful Life
YSTS: Favorite book of all time?
AK: Women or Pulp by Bukowski. Pulp is pretty funny and Women is a pretty ugly book.
YSTS: Any Tivo-able TV?
AK: I was obsessed with The Wire and now that it’s over I've been watching a lot of the History, Discovery and National Geographic shows.
YSTS: What are your five desert island records?
AK: The Beatles - Abbey Road, Jackson Brown - For Everyman, Leon Russell - Carney, Aimee Mann - Magnolia Soundtrack (This could be switched out with Jon Brion's Meaningless), Tom Waits - Closing Time
YSTS: Who are some of your favorite local bands?
AK: That’s too long of a list. Lately I’ve been listening to the Sweet Hurt, The World Record, The Minor Canon and the Henry Clay People’s new record [ed note: it’s pretty fantastic, but doesn’t come out until October].
YSTS: That’s it. Thanks for your time.
AK: Thank you. That was fun.