Stranded In Stereo: The Stranded Local Q&A: Big Digits

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Stranded Local Q&A: Big Digits

Who likes to get messy with some good ole’ electro-fun? This week’s local band highlight comes from Big Digits, here to make it easy for us to dance to our little hearts' content.

Having only been together since 2003, TD (vocals), Mac Swell (vocals, production), and Mark E. Moon (DJ, guitar) have already grabbed the attention of audiences across the boards with their abrasive, shouted lyrics, and have earned some serious respect with song titles like “Why Did You Reject My Steve Perry Fan Fiction?”.

Speeding through the tough Boston circuits, Big Digits snatched the cover of Northeast Performer in 2007, received glistening reviews of their latest record, “Smoke Machines in Lazervision,” and have even opened for M.I.A. at the Worcester Palladium -- impressive feats for a fairly young band.

Quirky humor, uncanny pop sensibilities, and some serious danceability make Big Digits bizarre and compelling. As Northeast Performer put it, “...refrain from calling it ‘weird’. Think outside the box; a far more apt description would be ‘refreshingly unconventional.’”

The members of the band took some time to answer the same five questions Stranded in Stereo always asks...

Hailing from Boston makes us better than all those non-Boston bands because

Being a band from Boston, you are constantly at a disadvantage. You gotta work your tail off to eke out the smallest bit of success.

Rent and the overall cost of living in this area are very high. Thusly, musicians and artists have to work full time jobs in order to sustain here and working takes away time from doing what you really want to do. There’s a balance we aim to strike, but results in a lot of sleep-deprived work days and drained from work nights.

There’s that, and also the population here is so tra
nsitive. Peeps move to boston for college or grad school. They are here for 1-5 years and then bounce. It’s very difficult to create a fan base in your home town when most people are just passing through.

But you have to keep at it – keep the drive alive. You gotta keep playing shows and booking your own tours and finding pockets of people inside and outside of Boston dig your music and will go to your shows and support your endeavors. If you can do that, you can claim victory.

Name at least three bands that are still around and touring that you’d love to be on a bill with, and think it fits well
We had a really rad time touring with Casy & Brian a few years back and have been hoping to reprise that tour at some point. We’d also love to tour with Plastic Little who are our cosmic twins and Philly brethren. M.I.A. and Daft Punk would be dream scenarios of course.

Your favorite Boston venue to perform in is
There are many great venues in Boston. I’d hate to single out one as the best and alienate the others. We’re not always attracted to the proper bar/club atmosphere, though. Dirty smelly sweating dancey house shows are kinda the best. Playing at Brookline High School and on a bus from Oakland in Medford were two other recent experiences of note.

Are there any genres that influence your music conceptually, rather than sonically? (In that you can’t hear from simply listening to the music, but from getting into the structure or mathematics of the song-writing, etc.)
Pop is a huge influence. We aim to be as creative, interesting, and different as possible but pop music keeps us in check. No matter who you are you cannot deny that “Since You Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson or “Hung Up” by Madonna are perfect songs. That and the Pixies formula of Loud-Quiet-Loud guide us most of the time.

Your favorite local bar to hit up when not doing the whole band deal is

I really dig Razzy’s which is just a couple of blocks from my house and is simply the realest in real: $2 Molson drafts, no HD tvs, free popcorn, drop down office style ceilings with gold squiggly lines painted on
it, moms and grandmoms behind the bar, karaoke …

Gotta give a shout out to Zuzu’s in Central Square too, because they employ TD and have helped us tremendously over the years.

Download: "Rescue 911" [mp3]
Catch them live
: June 15th @ Great Scott w/ Love is All & Mean Creek // July 5th @ Middle East Upstairs w/ Chinese Stars & Foreign Islands.

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