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Brotherun Comes Home to Phoenix

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In the summer of 2012, brothers Trevor and Nick Tillery set in motion what would become brotherun. Despite living 1,600 miles apart at the time, Trevor in Nashville and Nick in Phoenix, they were sending song ideas back and forth until Trevor convinced Nick to join him in Music City. This ultimately led to the creation of the four songs featured on the band’s debut, self-titled EP released independently this summer.

On Sunday, Dec. 22, brotherun returns to Phoenix and will perform live at Crescent Ballroom with The Cold Desert, Factories and A Cloud for Climbing.

The Spec interviewed Trevor Tillery about brotherun’s music and return home, read what he had to say, below…

As far as your website or social media sites go, there’s very little to no information about your band. You guys have the “mysterious Tillery brothers” image down. Was that what you were intending to accomplish?
The Internet is a deceiving place where we like to have fun. We feel in this day and age people give away too much. In the past, there was no way of knowing what The Beatles were doing every day and when they were in the studio. Then all of a sudden, they would emerge with a new record and this whole presentation surrounding it — completely reinvented each time. That’s what we like and are interested in. There’s more beauty and wonderment in art when all the dirty secrets aren’t given away. And to really get to know us, we’d rather have our fans see us live, meet us in person, and talk to us before or after the show. You know, what humans are supposed to do.

What are the pros and cons of making music and working with your brother?
All pros besides the fact that he’s better looking and younger than me.

What prompted you guys to want to move from Phoenix to Nashville?
Well, I initially moved to Nashville a little over three years ago thinking I wanted to just do the songwriting/session player thing. And it turned out, playing and writing for other people is not very enjoyable to me. I’m too much of the selfish artist type, I’ve gotta do it for myself. Once Nick and I decided to start this band, he moved out here about a year ago. Basically out of necessity. We love this city, but we also miss the desert and everything we have back in Phoenix.  Industry towns can be a silly place. It’s easy to get too caught up in it and lose your grounding. Let alone pull a local following amongst fellow musicians and peers.

I think there’s something to bands emerging out of random towns, who have built something locally themselves. We think it’s important and we still do that in Phoenix by staying connected locally.

Your song “Wishful Thinking” has a very Kid A vibe. Do you consider Radiohead an inspiration for your music?
Wow, that’s high praise. Thanks! We listen to so much music ranging all over the place, but Radiohead is definitely one of them though.

Your music videos have been directed and edited by Nick DuPlessis. Both of your videos for “Wishful Thinking” and “The Dissonance Between Us” portray almost an unconscious dream life: “Wishful Thinking” reflects the music being played the whole time while “The Dissonance Between Us” displays flashing lights and shapes throughout the video. What were your ideas or stories you wanted to convey through these videos? Was the video content your idea or Nick’s?
DuPlessis plays a very big collaborative role in our band. He’s our visionary. With the videos we wanted to make something that was abstract and trippy, something that the viewer could interpret themselves. A visual drug trip without the drugs!

Your self-titled EP debuted in August. What kind of response have you received since then?
Mass hysteria, paparazzi, love letters, and death threats. In all seriousness though, we have received quite a bit of positive feedback. The real issue is getting it out in the world and into some fresh ears.

What are you hoping happens at your “home for the holidays” show at Crescent at the end of the month?
We would like people to enjoy our show and support our music after the fact, hoping that our home crowd continues to grow and grow.

What is your karaoke song of choice?
I can’t say I’ve ever done karaoke. But if I were it would be (off the top of my head) “You’re the Voice” by John Farnham. It’s nice and cheesy, or anything by Journey.

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