One of the things that happens when you start reviewing records on your blog is that you're inundated with loads of PR agencies sending you links to THE NEXT BIG THING. Most of these are shite of the first water, so it's always quite nice when someone who actually wrote the songs contacts you, without using every superlative under the sun, and asks whether you'd mind listening to their stuff. This is what happened a couple of weeks ago with a band called Summer Library.
Summer Library is Patrick Kelly, an New Yorker with a passion for Sarah band Brighter. Being a fellow Brighter devotee, I listened to his songs with more of an interest than normal, and loved them, so I thought I'd ask him a few questions. Here's what he said:
Tell me a bit about your background. Have you been in bands before?
I played guitar and sang in a band in high school called the BrokenDials. We played a lot of Pavement covers; we were really into that 90s US. indie sound. After graduating, we'd still play occasionallybut it was difficult because we go to different colleges.
Do you make music alone?
I used to write songs for the Broken Dials but we'd work on themtogether after I wrote the guitar part and lyrics. With Summer Library, I write and record my music alone.
How would you describe your music?
So far I've only recorded two songs, so it's hard to say. But overall, I would describe it as simple pop music, in the vein of SarahRecords. I like my songs to have catchy melodies sung over janglyguitar parts. I'm also trying to work on synth parts to add more to the music, like the organs in Rocketship's songs.
Your music reminds me of Brighter, Harper Lee, Lovejoy - that kind of stuff. Are you a big fan of these bands, and who are you other influences?
I really love Brighter, but I've never listened to Harper Lee or Lovejoy. I'm sure I'd like Harper Lee though because they are affiliated with Brighter. I'm very influenced by Sarah Records ingeneral - especially the Field Mice and Brighter but also St Christopher, Heavenly, and Another Sunny Day. The Pastels, Rocketship, and Galaxie 500 are also huge influences because they make simple songs that sound beautiful, which is something I aim to do.
What sort of reception does your music get locally?
I only started recording music under Summer Library about a monthago, so I've only gotten reception from my friends, many of whom are also musicians and music lovers and are very supportive.
Do you play live?
I haven't played my songs live yet. I may play some acoustic sets when I return to school, but it wouldn't sound as full without the bass, lead guitar, etc. This is definitely a downside of being in aone-man band.
What's the next step for your music? Are you looking for a kindly person to release it?
I'd like to continue writing and recording songs, but I know itwon't be easy to do when I go back to school. I won't be able to record, but I'll still have some time to write songs I'm sure. I would love it if more and more people began listening to my music, but I know I'll have to work harder and record more songs for that to happen. I've sent my music to a few blogs that were linked on yourblog, so hopefully they will have a listen. And yes, I'm looking for a wonderful person to release my music, but I'm sure I'll need more promotion, blog coverage, etc for that to happen, so we'll see. That would be a dream come true.
Who are your other favourite bands at the moment?
I've been listening to the bands I mentioned as my influences; just lots of indie-pop/anorak. I'll have to check out Lovejoy and Harper Lee soon. I'm sure they are lovely. Earlier this summer I saw the Pains of Being Pure at Heart play, and I'm in love with them, so that was great. I'm also a big fan of Surfer Blood and the Drums. I would like to get into more contemporary indie-pop, like Allo Darlin. If you have any recommendations, please tell me!
Listen to Summer Library at their bandcamp page.