Indie pop artist Patternist is overcoming some of the apprehension that comes with being a performer the hard way: by going all out in his performances on stage, on record, and most recently, in music videos. Patternist is musician Gabe Mouer, who over the course of his relatively new career has crafted himself amongst the best in up and coming young artists. His spry synthesizer hued indie is evoking memories of noted artists like The Postal Service and Owl City, growing in stature and recognition over the course of his two recent EPs, 2015’s Youth Is Fading and the follow-up, 2016’s Give It Up.
Fresh from signing with InVogue Records, Patternist recently went and shot the music video for the track “I Don’t Feel Real”, a personal song about overcoming a songwriter’s crisis of identity. We talked to Gabe about the video, how shooting the over-the-top scenes went, his recent signing to InVogue, and what we can expect from his upcoming new LP due in September.
I enjoyed the video- it looked like fun- was the shoot a long day?
Mouer: Thank you so much! I was initially worried I wasn’t gonna be able to do this concept justice, so I’m really relieved that the response has been positive overall. The shoot was actually surprisingly quick, we had blocked out nearly nine hours for filming and I think by the time we wrapped we were barely over 5? Something like that. That all comes down to the direction and support of Anneliese and Aaron, they were so fantastic about communicating what they wanted for each shot while at the same time fostering such a supportive and encouraging atmosphere, it really helped in pushing me out of my comfort zone.
Who are Aaron and Anneliese? They directed the video? How did you guys connect?
Mouer: We came across Aaron and Anneliese after checking out the work they did for the band Armors, who are friends of ours we had toured with previously. It’s rare to find genuinely funny and novel music videos, and after seeing just how much those videos oozed personality and humor, we were like “We have to work with these guys.” I’m thankful they were kind enough to acquiesce, haha. Aaron shoots and directs while Anneliese produces and oversees the art direction, but Anneliese also had a heavy hand in the direction as well. They’re a dynamic duo.
You’ve talked about being an introvert, and that the concept of the video was a little daunting at first- but after filming, having fun, and seeing the end result- has that changed your approach to videos? Will we see more wild videos in the future?
Mouer: That’s my sincere hope. I mean, it was terrifying to be sure, there were moments where people would walk by and stop and stare, sometimes with their kids, as I’m like salaciously popping grapes into the mouth of this horrifying sex doll. But it’s all in service of the art [laughs]. With the admittedly downer nature of the record, the goal is to contrast its more dismal thematic outlook with a lighthearted approach to our videos.
How different do you find making music videos like that to say performing live?
Mouer: Personally, I’ve always had fairly bad stage fright. I’ll feel initially sick to my stomach before going out, I worry about what people will think. But, if you want to be a songwriter and you’re, like me, too egotistical to let other people touch your material, you have to bury debilitating thoughts and just go for it. It’s the exact same process for this video. Can I act? Can I dance? Probably not but who gives a shit. They share the same mental priming, “Well, what the hell else am I gonna do?”
It’s a very personal song- and you’ve said that it’s about overcoming a songwriter identity crisis of sorts. How do you feel about the finished song?
Mouer: I’m the last person to ask about the finished product because my MO is to vacillate wildly between delusions of grandeur and utter self-loathing [laughs]. I don’t know that I can feign any sort of objectivity. I think the track is not so much about my identity crisis as much as it’s documenting a period of hopelessness (channelled into this story about a person who finds themselves committed after a breakdown) that just happened to coincide with my feeling aimless in my artistic pursuits. I think I’ve done about the best I could do at the time in communicating those feelings in a hopefully interesting and engaging way. Then again, I still have people ask me what the song is about so maybe not [laughs].
You’ve said the song was your first step towards narrative songwriting. Have you found this writing process to be more natural or is it still a work in progress?
Mouer: Oh it’s always a work in progress for sure! But it’s taken me longer than it should have to realize what kind of songwriter I want to be, what my perspective is. I worried less about how Patternist fits into the Indie Pop zeitgeist and focused on trying to make the kind of record I wanted to hear, whether or not it’s what the people want is still up for debate. Also, having a higher track count and run time to play with helped divorce me from having to write a series of singles and allowed me to play around more.
You recently signed to InVogue Records and are releasing your new LP in September. What can we expect from the new record? Have you adopted the same songwriting approach as you did to “I Don’t’ Feel Real” to the songs on the album?
Mouer: I’ve taken to describing the LP as “melodramatic guitar pop.” It’s a collection of short stories that explore various ways we isolate ourselves from the world around us, backdropped by a series of verb’d-out, emo inspired guitar riffs. It’s still a Patternist record, if such a thing can be said, but with more of a “rock band” approach mixed in with the usual bedroom pop sensibilities. From a lyrical standpoint as well as a melodic one, “I Don’t Feel Real” sets a precedent the rest of the record follows. Hopefully that adds up to something people can connect with.
The new Patternist album, I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here, is due out September 6th on InVogue Records.
Hangtime share “Can I Take You Out” video
There’s no escaping the 90s sound
Not too long ago we had a short chat with Canadian pop-punk band Hangtime about their new EP and the video for the track “One Nine Nine Five”. The aptly titled song is a throwback to a pop punk thought long gone but as this Toronto band will attest, is by no means dead. Now the band have debuted their new music video for the track “Can I Take You Out”; a sweetly romantic, melodic pop punk ode.
The track is a cut from their 2019 EP Invasion, which you can pick up via Bandcamp. Hangtime have a couple of upcoming Canadian shows on the horizon; with all the details available on their Facebook page.
When we spoke to the band and where their sound comes from, guitarist/vocalist Warren Gregson explained their influences;
“There’s no escaping the 90s sound I’m afraid, that’s just who we are. Actually, our biggest influences go back further than that. Most of us were first listening to bands like ALL, Misfits, Dag Nasty, Big Drill Car, Bad Religion, Doughboys, Nils… etc, back in the 80’s. I suppose that’s where the 90s sound for many other bands originated as well.”
Check out the new video and let’s reminisce about some good old school pop punk.
Longwave return with “If We Ever Live Forever”
Longwave still know how to make an impression
New York indie rockers Longwave are returning with their first album in a decade. Titled If We Ever Live Forever, the album is the follow-up to 2008’s Secrets Are Sinister. The band have recently been releasing new music over the last year, with the single “Stay With Me” hitting airwaves in October of last year. Longwave have now revealed the music video for the new song “If We Ever Live Forever”, which you can view above.
If We Ever Live Forever is due for release October 25th via Bodan Kuma Recordings and will be followed by a short run of dates through the eastern side of North America. You can pre-order the new Longwave album from the band’s webstore.
Longwave first burst on to the scene with 2000’s Endsongs, but really started making waves with their 2003 release The Strangest Things (which included the hit single “Tidal Wave”). The latter was the band’s major label debut for RCA Records. We last covered Longwave in 2005, reviewing their terrific album There’s A Fire.