FAULT Interview Series: Spindrift tour with Black Mountian

Spindrift –  Black Mountain Tour



FAULT is continuing our series of exclusive interviews with LA’s Spindrift. The band started the first leg of their European tour 3 weeks ago with Black Mountain. The preliminary week on the road saw the band selling out shows in Paris followed by capacity gigs in Belgium and Italy. The group released a new single and video called When I Was Free last week and have just received custom western cut & embroidered suits made specifically for the tour by Los Angeles designer Ava Mann. Ava’s designs for Spindrift are inspired by the legendary tailor Nudie Cohn. FAULT caught up with Spindrift’s Lucas Dawson this week to find out how the tour has been going thus far.

FAULT: Lucas, how has Spindrift been received by fans?

It’s always interesting to see how they’ll react. It’s not uncommon to see bewilderment on the faces in the crowd in the beginning, although the French and Italian crowds were into it right away. Some of the shows are just billed as “Black Mountain + Support” leaving BM fans with a surprise when we kick things off. At the same time, sometimes they’ll surprise us with enormous response right out of the gate. Regardless, by the end of every set everyone is shakin’ their asses and chanting along to Indian Run- the barnburner Tarantino chose for his “Hell Ride” production.

FAULT: How did the gigs in Paris go?

Le Fleche d’Or was fantastic. The fans in Paris definitely have a very genuine appreciation for psychedelic music, spaghetti westerns and the whole cowboy thing in general. Because Black Mountain flew to Greece to do a couple shows after our first 3 outings together, and we didn’t have it in our budget to join them, we just drove back to Paris and played with the friends we made last year. Both nights were fantastic. We played in a gallery space/venue/bar called “La Blanchisserie” and a warehouse/squat called “Le Cleub,” which was organized by our friend Juan Trip.

FAULT: What’s been the most standout moment on the tour for you so far?

Definitely crossing over from Denmark to Sweden after playing a sold out show in Copenhagen the night before. Apparently a Swedish customs agent can just take you into a room, regardless of probable cause, and make you disrobe before them. I was the one in our group they chose to do that to. Steve and Jeremy of Black Mountain had the same thing done to them on a previous tour and gave us warning so I kinda saw it coming. They didn’t make me spread ‘em but the customs bastard did insist that I show him my c & b’s. I obliged and shortly afterwards we were back en route to Oslo. We all decided that next time we would just save everyone some time and cross their border in the nude!

FAULT: You had customized suits designed for this tour by Ava Mann. Can you tell us how that came about?

I met Ava at the Joshua Tree Roots Festival in October. Soon after, we found ourselves with a little crew of mutual friends. We were hanging out frequently and I eventually learned that she designed high-end uniforms for hotels, restaurants, etc. She was working on a project with a roaring twenties/“Boardwalk Empire” vibe in mind at the time. I asked if she was into “Nudie Suits.” She said she didn’t know what I was the hell I was talking about and 3 months later we found ourselves collaborating on the Spindrift suits.

FAULT: Each of the band members were able to choose what would be embroidered on the suits. What images did you choose and why?

Since time was running out as we were readying for Europe, we decided we would start with one image embroidered on the backs of the suits and then do more when we got back. (Nudie’s were usually complex and very personal). With some photoshop pointers from my girlfriend, I came up with many designs for my suit but ended up choosing an owl in flight for the centerpiece. There is a couple different reasons I wanted an owl and moon on a black suit. I think I was 11 years old or so when me and a few friends got permission to camp out by ourselves in my 2 acre backyard that backed up to a huge corn field. Before we fell asleep, an enormous owl perched a few feet away from us and gave us all a good spook by staring down at us with his colossal yellow eyes. There was a full moon that night too. The main reason, however, was to pay homage to my recently deceased grandmother, Apolonia “Grandma Appie” Sowa. She was the daughter of two Polish immigrants who raised their family on their farm in Stockdale, Texas. Her Polish surname, Sowa, means “owl” in English and when we’d go visit her over the holidays or whenever, I would always take notice of the owl trinkets and wall hangings all over her house. After she passed away last year, the owl fixation kinda started following me around. I was seeing owls in miniature, painted, flying or perched everywhere, especially while on tour. It seemed only natural to put one on the suit.

FAULT: Can you tell us a bit more about the new release WHEN I WAS FREE? When and where was the video shot?

The song and video are to be debuted on IFC.com Wednesday, April 13th. Our friend, Rob Bray, literally took thousands of photographs in time lapse while we were recording the new album at Hicksville Trailer Palace in Joshua Tree, CA last December. He made an incredible collage set to what is probably my favorite song on the album.

SPINDRIFT – When I was Free

FAULT: How’s it going with the Black Mountain camp?

The Black Mountain and Spindrift romance is palpable. The tour managers and promoters insist that we leave the door open with all feet on the floor. Hopefully Steve McBean doesn’t make the two bands get married at gunpoint.

FAULT: Do you have a favourite Black Mountain song?

No, actually. I can’t even give you a favorite album! I’m partial to all of ‘em. I will say that the Hair Song video stands out as my favorite video though, but that’s mainly because I’m in love with the actress…

Black Mountain – The Hair Song (Directed by Zoë Bower and Simon Chan)

FAULT: What’s been your biggest FAULT on tour so far?

Definitely falling asleep signed into Skype or mid-email composition repeatedly. This morning I awoke to a find an email I had been meaning to send the night before that only consisted of the opening sentence and about 100 sigma symbols (which I still can’t seem to replicate). The other day I woke up at sunrise sitting upright in the hallway of our Italian hotel with my laptop in my lap. Hell, its 6am right now! BUT there ain’t nothin’ worse than missing a Skype date, I’ll tell you what. I sure am glad there is such a thing these days.



Photo Credit: Aurora De Morales

Spindrift Tour with Dead Meadow

25/04/11 : Sidro – Savignano sul Rubicone Italy
26/04/11 : Lio Bar – Brescia Italy
27/04/11 : Le Rockstore – Montpellier France
28/04/11 : Le Mistral Gagnant – Valence France
29/04/11 : Moog – Barcelona Spain
30/04/11 : Mogambo – Donosti Spain
01/05/11 : Taberna Belfast – Leon/Santa Maria del Paramo Spain
03/05/11 : Hard Club – Porto Portugal
04/05/11 : Universidad – Vitoria Spain
05/05/11 : Moby Dick – Madrid Spain
06/05/11 : Le Krakatoa – Bordeaux France
07/05/11 : Caveau des Trinitaires – Metz France
08/05/11 : Exit – Rotterdam Netherlands
09/05/11 : Hafenklang – Hamburg Germany
10/05/11 : Festsaal Kreuzberg – Berlin Germany
11/05/11 : Loppen – Copenhagen Denmark
12/05/11 : Debaser – Stockholm Sweden
13/05/11 : Mejeriet – Lund Sweden