Dave Gutter, lead singer/guitarist/songwriter from Rustic Overtones and Paranoid Social Club took some time to chat about his show at Church on Saturday December 10th, his goals for Rustic Overtones, and hibernation.
How’s everything with the Overtones?
Oh it’s great. We got our own studio [Limited Productions Limited] which is, like, the guiltiest pleasure ever. We just got a new drummer and keyboardist from the Royal Hammer and they’re doing a great job. And we’re, basically, just playing a ton of music and getting our new album ready.
What are your goals for the Overtones?
Put out records. Tour. Get out to all the fans, all the people that connect with our music.
Where do you see Rustic Overtones in the next year?
We’re kind of in a cycle we go through based on the seasons up here in Maine. Summer is all about going live and playing festivals, really getting a good release of music. In the fall the kids are back in school so it’s usually college towns and tours. Winter is usually hibernation where we hole up in our studio for hours on end. That’s where the albums get made. The spring we usually put out a new record and it starts all over again.
Do you think it’s important to have that kind of cycle? To go with the seasons like that?
Yes, I think it’s absolutely crucial to not have everything be perfect all the time.
There’s nothing wrong with dark winter nights.
It’s a part of what creates our music and our personalities. And the warmth you have to get from people. People united in both happiness and like “shit this sucks,” or “shit, my car won’t start.” If you listen to music from around the country – or around the world – in the south the music is very happy and relaxed and lazy, even hip-hop is all about partying and having fun. Music from colder areas is a little more serious, not that we’re all serious, we have fun and games but bands in the Northeast have that kind of edge. I mean … I’d sound like fucking Jimmy Buffet if I lived in a tropical climate.
What side projects are you working on right now?
Well I have another band called Paranoid Social Club with Overtones bassist, Jon Roods. Today [12/8/11] I’m doing some solo acoustic shows in Boston at WBUR and Unregular Radio. I also have a show coming up in Dover, New Hampshire before Church on Saturday.
Do you use the studio you’ve set up in Portland as mainly Overtones? How much of that studio is used for your side projects as well?
It depends on the mood. I write the songs and then I put them in a pile. So this is the Rustic pile and it’s more spiritual it’s more how I feel and the Paranoid pile is more unifying and trying identify how everyone else feels. One’s very self indulgent and one’s very observant. Some songs will seem better as a Rustic song with horns and a big arrangement and others are more punk and for Paraonid.
We can, really, do anything we want with the arrangement of musicians we’ve sorrouned ourselves with.”
What can people expect from your show at Church on Saturday night?
The people that have seen us before: They know. We give 100% all the time. The people that haven’t seen us yet: It’s gonna be some loud soul music with some punk rock and a lot of energy.
We’re bringing some high energy to Church because, you know, you have to. It’s Church.
You collaborated with David Bowie on Viva Nueva!, what was he like in person?
He was awesome. We spent a better part of the summer summer with his bass player/producer Tony Visconti. One day we were just dicking around playing a bunch of instruments and making all kinds of noise — I think one of us was stoned and eating a sandwich with half of it on him — and then David Bowie just walks in the studio. We all immediately just shaped right up.
Him and our horns section hit it off real well since that’s kind of a big part of his music. We went out to eat at restaurants. Musem of Rock ‘n’ Roll history and the museum of Television and Film where he did an interview and mentioned collaborating with us along with all of his other collaborations — which was wild to be put in the same breath as those other bands. He introduced us to Joey Romane.
He smokes everywhere he goes so when you’re with Bowie, you can smoke anywhere you want. Bowie would light up and then we would light up right behind him. People would shoot us dirty looks knowing that we were just riding off him. I used to actually take his cigarette butts and mail them back to my Mom. He would get these Marlboro cigarettes with brown filters from over seas so they’re even more special.
My Mom was all excited to be getting theseDavid Bowie cigarette butts.