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What I Learned at Bandcamp: Lantern

Lantern, interview, Bandcamp

Photo by Alyssa Robb

In its three years of existence, Lantern has released six EPs and a 7″ full of fuzzy guitars and vocals that pay homage to the band’s rock ‘n’ roll influences.

The group, comprised of Philadelphia residents Zachary Devereux Fairbroter, Emily Robb, and Christian Simmons, released LP Rock ‘N’ Roll Rorschach on July 9. The album was co-produced and engineered by Jeff Zeigler, who has worked with artists Kurt Vile and Clockcleaner.

The album can be streamed or purchased for $8 on Bandcamp. It’s also available through Sophomore Lounge Records on limited-edition 12″ vinyl.

The Spec interviewed Lantern’s Emily Robb, read what she had to say below…

How long have you been making music?
Lantern started as a bedroom project in 2010 when Zach started recording what became “Stranger I Come Stranger I Leave,” an exploration of minimal blues released as an EP on Electric Voice Records. We’ve both been playing music for our whole lives in some form or another. Zach picked up the guitar when he was 14, I when I was 20. Trumpet, clarinet, piano, violin, those were all parts of our respective childhoods. Music has always been there.

How did you meet and form the band?
Zach and I met when we were in school in 2008 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. We were both in a popular music studies class, reading about the Fluxus movement, Elvis’ hips and the loudness war. Things sort of developed slowly…we started dating a year later. Eventually, I joined Zach’s band Oman Ra II as a tambourine player and bass guitarist. We were listening to a lot of blues and early rock ‘n’ roll and somewhere along the line we decided to disband Oman Ra II and start something new. It was a new era, pretty much synonymous to us moving to Philadelphia. Christian joined our band as the drummer right before we went into the studio to record our LP Rock ‘N Roll Rorschach.

Who or what are your influences?
We have lots of influences but I’ll say rock ‘n’ roll as a blanket term. We love Bo Diddley, we love The Stones, we love Bowie, Neil Young, The Beatles, The Stooges, T-Rex, Zeppelin, CCR, MC5, Patti Smith… We also love old blues guys and gals and lots of early folk recordings like The Moving Star Hall Singers and Dr. Ross and Elizabeth Cotten. Also soul makes up a large part of our record shelves. I LOVE Ike and Tina Turner, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, 60’s pop. There are lots of influences in our music. I think anything we listen to has some kind of an influence, whether it’s subliminal or more purposeful.

What is your favorite song off the new album? Why?
It’s hard to choose a favorite from the album. I think the best single is “King Of The Jungle.” It’s just really fun and has a fat tone. It’s real over-the-top and makes me laugh. We’ll have a video out soon for it. That said, I think the whole B-side has a great flow…it really brings you on a journey.

Upcoming projects, where do you want to go from here?
For upcoming projects, we’ve been talking about some 7 inches, potentially splits with other bands– more on that later! We’re also already starting to write material for our next LP! We are touring the eastern U.S. and Canada in August and September.

What inspires your music?
I’m not sure I can speak for Zach here, but what inspires my music are the things I see and hear everyday, the moods I’m in, the experiences I have. I am a pretty emotional person (I will cry at any success story, even if it’s a cheesy and insincere commercial. I will cry at unsuccessful stories too, including the news). I wouldn’t say I’m prolific-I’m actually a very slow worker-but I certainly have bursts of creativity that most often coincide with my feeling a little lonely and emotional.

Why do you make music?
Why do we make music? I guess it’s what we’re good at. Obviously it takes discipline to make music as a living, but we really don’t know any other way. I certainly don’t think waiting tables is my calling. Zach doesn’t think being a line cook is his calling. Making music makes sense though. I think I can communicate better through music than with words.

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