What I Learned at Bandcamp: Loop Line
Loop Line is an indie-rock band comprised of two musicians who are always in different cities. Currently, Luke lives in Phoenix and Paul lives in Minneapolis, but through the wonders of the Internet, the two have been collaborating for years.
On Jan. 29, the duo released Wakes, an EP that can be streamed and downloaded for free on Bandcamp.
Below, read The Spec‘s interview with Loop Line and stream tracks from the album…
Tell us a little about yourselves…
Luke: Having the same taste in music and weird comedy brought us together, and the Internet keeps us together.
How long have you been making music?
Luke: I’ve been writing and recording songs since I was in high school. That was back in the dark ages of 2004, so thankfully it wasn’t as easy as it is now to post music and videos online. I would have had a very sincere and cringe-worthy YouTube channel.
Paul: I didn’t really start writing music until my early 20s. The tracks on this EP are some of my earliest songs.
Luke and I have been playing together for almost a decade now in various bands, but Loop Line officially began a few years ago after he moved to Japan and we decided we wanted to keep making music together.
How did you get connected with one another and what is the process for making music since you live in different states?
We went to the same high school, but we never really met or connected until college, when Paul was living with a mutual friend. Our process is pretty straightforward. One of us usually emails the other the skeleton of a song with a barebones arrangement, and then we just keep emailing it back and forth, adding and deleting parts, until it feels complete. Maybe it just feels straightforward since we have been living in different countries for the majority of this band’s lifespan, and at the moment we are almost living in the same time zone.
Who/what are your influences?
Paul: The artists that have mutually influenced us are the Beach Boys and Weezer. But we both bring our own influences to the table that keep us from just ripping off those bands all the time. I grew up on a lot on classic rock.
Luke: The Clash, Elvis Costello and the Attractions, and The Smiths all had huge impacts on me. I used to be into really loud and fast punk, but the lyrics and arrangements of those bands really pushed me to try out more things musically.
What is your favorite song you’ve released and why?
Paul: “All I’m Waiting For.” It’s one of the first songs I ever wrote, and it has a bit of a slacker, twisted vibe that I’d like to infuse more of my songs with. But, whatever we release next will be my favorite. I get more excited about songs that are on the horizon than songs we’ve released.
Luke: I’d say “Nothing About You.” It encapsulates everything we’re about in less than three minutes.
Upcoming projects, where do you want to go from here?
We both have pretty good careers going outside of music, so we have no delusions of stardom. Our main goal right now is producing greater music at a quicker pace, and getting as many people to listen to us as possible.
We are eyeing a possible summer release for a new EP or possibly an LP if the stars align.
If you could no longer be a musician, what would you be or do for a living?
Well, we don’t make enough money to only be musicians, so we both have been following our own career paths. I am a videographer and motion graphics designer, and Luke’s a teacher.
What musicians or bands do you look up to?
Paul: I like bands who don’t seem to be absorbed in their own stardom. Lately I’ve become a fan of Mac Demarco, not just because of his music, but also because he’s so himself and doesn’t try to shapeshift to become more mainstream. I think the Beatles were also admirable in how they took all that fame in stride and were almost smart-asses about it. McCartney still doesn’t seem too serious about his own celebrity.
Luke: I really admire bands with a sense of humor, especially when it comes through in their music without being corny. It’s not something you usually see done well outside of hip-hop. The Clash, the Pixies, and Modest Mouse all balance sincerity and absurdity really well, which is something I aspire to.
Why do you make music?
Paul: It’s one of the few things in life that I get wrapped up in and can sit and tinker with for hours without noticing the time fly by. There’s no better mood booster for me than writing a demo over the course of a few days and then playing it on a loop as I drive to work. I never consciously see it as an emotional outlet, but deep down it probably is, as a lot of things I’m thinking about at the time tend to pop up in the lyrics or the mood of the song.
Luke: Yeah, it’s the same for me. Making music just makes me intrinsically happy. There are days when it feels like a struggle creatively, but I don’t think I’d ever be able to stop.
Anything else you’d like readers to know that we haven’t asked you about?
Paul: We make our own videos with a group of people that I work with on other film projects. That will probably continue, as it’s fun to mix together two of my passions.
Luke: We’re pretty lucky that we have friends with the resources and time to make music videos with us. Much love to those guys for being up for that.