In the space of a year back in 2004 Eric Dill went from Hoosier heartland obscurity to fronting a top Billboard pop act, leading the Click Five as they recorded “Just The Girl,” the song which taught him how harsh a mistress the world of pop can be. After juggling and eventually rejecting offers of publishing deals after his song “No Surprise” for Daughtry went platinum, he’s now back in Indianapolis looking to launch his solo career. His refreshingly candid interview with Indianapolis Monthly’s James Layne is worth checking out in its entirety. Check out “War with the Wolves” below, a shiny pop nugget which bodes well for the rest of his album Forever Is Not Enough. He seems to have his head in the right place, knowing that in today’s climate you’ve got to get the music out there, no limits:
I just really want to play a lot in Indianapolis and create my awareness here. And then connect the dots by letting people know that I’m from here, and then I left here. I had my little “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride” [fronting The Click Five] and went around the world and learned all these different things. I got to see what I think few people have got to see, and I want to take the good and bad from that and apply it to my life, certainly to uplift the music here. I know it sounds ambitious, but I want nothing short of a renaissance here with music.
Quick, let’s get this guy out on the road with fellow Hoosiers Hero Jr and Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s and see what we can make happen!
Richard Edwards, of Margot and the Nuclear So and So's
As the leader of Indianapolis’s Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s, Richard Edwards is a songwriter who knows what he wants. The result has been one of the more varied and interesting discographies to be found among modern indies.
PopMatters ran my first-ever interview for the site today! I interviewed Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s front-man Richard Edwards back in March about the release of their new album Rot Gut, Domestic, and wound up having a meandering half-hour conversation with the Indianapolis-based songwriter. Check out the full interview for his take on big-picture concepts in rock music, and why sometimes a band needs to stop seeking perfection and simply bang out new records.
My review of Indianapolis-based indie-alternative band Margot and the Nuclear So and Sos’ new album Buzzard is now up on Stereo Subversion! Feel free to check it out there for the full review, or read a clip below:
Richard Edwards can be an uncompromising bandleader. He knows what music he wants to make and how he wants to make it, and if fans aren’t ready to come along for the ride, or if record industry “know alls” decide they know what’s better for him, he’ll tear everything apart to regain control. I interviewed him for Ball State’s 72 Hours in 2004 back when he was part of Archer Avenue, and he was quick to tell me his music wasn’t for everyone and he wasn’t trying to make music that would fit that mold.
So it didn’t surprise me to see the band, on a major label in 2008, bucking the system by daring to release Animal/Not Animal as a dual album, the first being the label’s album, the second being their “director’s cut.” I also wasn’t surprised to note that in many cases the record label had been right. Sometimes artists need editors, and in the case of Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s, bypassing the gatekeeper made for a bizarre dual-album experience that was often less than the sum of its parts. It certainly wasn’t up to the lofty debut the band had made with 2006’s The Dust of Retreat, which remains one of my favorite albums from the last five years, indie or not.
A lot of fuss has been made over the band’s membership shifts when preparing for the release of third album, Buzzard, but put that shit to rest. If every band needs an editor, sometimes the makeup of a band can need some trimming and reconstructing as well. The band began with eight members, which created frequently complicated arrangements and sonic diversions which, while interesting to a point, tended to make some of their music lean toward the obtuse. There were always some great hooks there, but listeners had to be willing to listen repeatedly and dig, dig, dig.
To read the rest, visit Stereo Subversion.