Currently touring across Canada, five-piece rock ‘n’ roll band Thought Beneath Film released a new video for their single Cartographers, which has already had over an amazing 100, 000 views within a couple of weeks. To find out what the quintet have planned next, we caught up with Thought Beneath Film to talk about Weezer’s Pinkerton, their love for Kim Mitchell, creating their first music video, and an upcoming record.
AMBY: Hello Thought Beneath Film, cheers for speaking with us today. How’s the band doing?
Thought Beneath Film: Thanks for having us! The band is doing really well. We’re super busy, but that’s the way we like it. We had a few weeks of downtime in the summer while we were prepping everything for the release of our first single, but it’s been a whirlwind since and we’re having a lot of fun through it all.
AMBY: You’re currently on your Canadian cross-country tour. What are your most looking forward to?
Thought Beneath Film: This is our first time out west, so that was definitely the part of the tour we were all looking forward to the most. We just returned from the western leg of the tour actually and it didn’t disappoint! The drives through Banff and into British Columbia were amazing. The shows in B.C. were incredible too. Playing a house party hosted by our good friends Paul and Sam in Mission, B.C. was one particular highlight for me.
AMBY: Your debut EP Detours was released last year and you’re soon releasing an album in early 2014. How do you feel you’ve evolved as a band over the past year?
Thought Beneath Film: I don’t know if the full-length album will fully reflect our evolution from a writing perspective, as the majority of the songs were written at the same time as the songs from Detours, but there has definitely been a great deal of progression as a band. We’ve all upped our game over the last year. We’re incredibly serious and passionate about our music and what it stands for and that’s now being reflected in our work ethic. Our practice regiment is pretty extreme: five or six sessions a week, even amidst the chaos of shows, recording, video shoots and whatever else might be happening. It’s exhausting at times, but we all feel like it’s a necessary sacrifice. Our goals as a band are lofty, but, unlike a lot of other bands, we’re not embarrassed to admit them. We don’t want to be the best band on our street. We don’t want to be the best in our hometown. We want to be the best band of all-time. Our logic in setting such an outlandish goal is simple: even if we fall short of our goal, we’re going to get a lot further than we would have if we set the bar lower for ourselves. That mentality forces us to constantly be challenging ourselves as musicians. Society is too fucking pragmatic these days. Let’s bring things back to a place where it’s not only socially-acceptable to dream, but encouraged.
AMBY: What can fans expect to hear from the record?
Thought Beneath Film: I think the full-length record shows a lot more diversity. A lot of people have pigeon-holed us as a power-pop or pop-punk band because of the EP, but I think the full-length will demonstrate the fact that we have a lot more depth. The EP featured all of our “bangers” as they say. It was relentless, hyperactive and angst-ridden and that was the intention. It was a reaction to what’s been going on in the Canadian music scene for the last few years. We feel like music is at a crossroads right now and we want to steer things in a different direction. Folk rock and synth pop have run their course. I think it’s necessary for music to go through these cycles, but those styles of music don’t have the same destructive power that rock and roll does. True rock music can level cities and rip fucking heads off and it’s that power that can tear down borders and stimulate change and progression in every regard: musically, politically, socially, etc.
AMBY: Cartographers is a great single. What inspired the song?
Thought Beneath Film: Thanks! We appreciate the kind words. “Cartographers” was actually one of the last songs written for the album. To me, it really epitomizes what we were trying to do with this record lyrically and musically. Despite the world being in such a fucked up place socially, politically and economically, I can’t help but feel that the underwhelmingly subdued music that’s trending right now is advocating complacency on some level. We wanted a song that served as a reaction to those styles of music and kicked people in the face. I’ve always believed in the power of rock music and its ability to serve as a vessel to question, challenge and, ultimately, stimulate change. It’s unfortunate that so many bands and artists are squandering the opportunity to instill any semblance of a productive or proactive message within their songs these days. In so many ways, culture is going to shit right now, but don’t worry! Just head down to the club, let loose, crush a few beers, throw your hands up in the air and wave ’em around like you just don’t care and everything will sort itself out, right?
AMBY: On October 4th, you released your debut music video (for Cartographers). What was the experience like making your first film-clip?
Thought Beneath Film: Having to keep our energy levels up in order to bounce off the walls for 30 straight takes was an exhausting process, but it was also a lot of fun. Working with John and James from Replay Media was a great experience. They totally understood the song and the band and I think they did an amazing job at capturing the energy and intensity of our live performances in the video.
AMBY: Does hailing from Hamilton have an influence on your music? And if so, how?
Thought Beneath Film: In complete honesty, I don’t feel like Hamilton has really shaped our sound whatsoever. I’m proud of the fact that we’ve managed to maintain our identity through all of the fleeting trends that have passed through the city, and Southern Ontario for that matter, in recent years: ska, emo, hardcore, folk, etc. We’ve always strived to develop our own sound and musical identity. However, with that said, we’re incredibly grateful to have grown up in a city with such a thriving music scene and rich music history. Having the platform to play shows consistently at a young age was crucial to our development as musicians. Had we grown up in a small town that didn’t have such a strong music scene with so many great venues, it’s very plausible that we all wouldn’t still be pursuing music. For that reason, we owe a lot to the city of Hamilton and the people that keep its music scene ticking.
AMBY: If you could choose to have your music featured in any film or show, which would you choose?
Thought Beneath Film: I always thought “Cartographers” would be the perfect accompaniment to a crazy, over-the-top chase scene or race. With that said, it’s a toss-up between “Days of Thunder” or “Top Gun”. It would definitely need to be something intense like that. And it doesn’t get any more intense than Tom Cruise.
AMBY: What’s the best release of the year?
Thought Beneath Film: Let’s pretend it’s 1996 for a second…the answer is Pinkerton by Weezer.
AMBY: And lastly, what’s something about Thought Beneath Film that nobody knows yet?
Thought Beneath Film: We’re all avid Kim Mitchell fans. “Go For A Soda” was the undeniable anthem of the western leg of our tour and it’s more than likely that another Kim Mitchell song will claim that title for the eastern leg. “Patio Lanterns” and “Lager and Ale” are serious contenders at the moment.
Thank you Thought Beneath Film, for giving us your answers!
Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout