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Learning to Streamline Tracks in Pre-Production
GENRE: Indie Rock
HOMETOWN: Buffalo, NY
ARTISTIC APPROACH: Democratic songwriting with unpredictable style
The Tins are a married trio. After spending 12 hours a day for weeks refurbishing their new home and practice space in Buffalo, the indie pop band has become hazardously close.
“A lot of bands ask us, ‘How can you be around each other constantly and not want to kill each other?’ Well, we do want to kill each other,” says guitarist/vocalist Adam Putzer, laughing. “We deal with it.”
Living together has led to some tension, but it’s forced Adam, Mike Santillo (keys/vox) and Dave Muntner (drums) to learn what bands often don’t figure out until after years of being on the road together: how to deal with gripes within the group, especially over songwriting criticism.
But with only one EP, The Tins’ youth naturally demands a harsh learning curve to survive the beast of the music industry. Despite a four-track demo that failed to land a record deal, The Tins hired producer Joe Blaney (Modest Mouse, Soul Asylum) who, they explain, took his time to streamline their tracks in the studio during pre-production. “[Blaney] has his idea of what he thinks a pop song should be,” says Santillo. “He knows how to write a good song.”
Their first full-length, Life’s a Gas, travels from “’60s rockery” to “skeletal disco” to “straight-up pop” and touches on some experimentation. Collectively, The Tins say the songs deliberately avoid the threat of one-hit-wonder status impending upon them thanks to “The Green Room,” the infamous seven-minute epic track on their EP that stole the credit for the band’s rave reviews up until now.
Even after the full-length was finished in July, The Tins hit another hard lesson: their newly-hired PR rep recommended at least three months of promotion before Life’s A Gas’s release – a torturous waiting game, but one The Tins are willing to play for the sake of their music careers. “It really was not easy,” says Dave on waiting for the record release go-ahead. “It is a very challenging thing, but it’s one that we’ve all accepted. It’s a learning process for us, this whole music industry thing.”
photo by Jesse Deganis Librera