Interview: Acrylic Grooves

Acrylic Grooves are a Psychedelic Appalachian rock band from the college town of Athens, Ohio formed in 2016. They recently released their self titled debut album, which you can stream on Spotify.

Their sound is inspired by a wide variety of genres: funk (can hear this on the opening track “Galaxy Drive”), country rock (can hear this on “T-Puppy” – this guitar solo on it reminds me of The Allman Brothers, so good), and blues rock (you can hear this on “Kicked Back”). Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, The Allman Brothers Band, Jimi Hendrix, Parliament Funkadelic, Black Sabbath, Gov’t Mule, Ekoostik Hookah, and The Water Band are some bands that they cite as influences.

The band’s lineup are: Brandon Smail on guitar and vocals, Kurt Mehler on bass, Jordon Smail on drums and vocals, and Tyler Summers on auxiliary percussion.

We at The Diversity of Classic Rock are lucky to have the band with us today on the blog for an interview. If you want to get to know them, keep on reading!

Interview: Acrylic Grooves

Angie: Is the name of the band a reference to vinyl? How did you pick the band name?

Brandon: Actually yes, our name is a reference to vinyl.  A modern way to make records is with acrylic, and we feel our style is modern vintage. Also the “Grooves” reference the grooves in the vinyl.

Angie: How did the band meet?

Kurt: Well Brandon and Jordon are twins. We all went to college together, but I actually met them when another friend of ours invited me to jam at Brandon’s house.

Angie: You describe yourselves as a “Psychedelic Appalachian Rock n Roll Band”, that’s an interesting combination. Can you describe that more in detail?

Brandon: We call ourselves Psychedelic Appalachian Rock n Roll, which we describe as rowdy soulful bluesy rock music. It’s kinda like a northern version of southern rock, since we’re not from the south. All of us are from the Appalachian region, surrounded by hills and mountains, and it only felt right to include this in our genre title as the feeling we get from the area has been an important influence on our style.

Angie: What are your favourite albums of all time?

Acrylic Grooves: We decided to put together a list of ten albums for this, they aren’t in any particular order:

  1. Pink Floyd – Animals,
  2. Gov’t Mule – Banks Of The Deep End
  3. Allman Brothers – Eat A Peach
  4. Jimi Hendrix – Band Of Gypsys
  5. Led Zeppelin – The Song Remains The Same
  6. Ekoostik Hookah – Double Live
  7. Black Sabbath – Paranoid
  8. Tool – Lateralus
  9. 9. Pearl Jam – Ten
  10. 10. Alice In Chains – Jar of Flies

Angie: How popular is rock music in the college town of Athens, Ohio?

Kurt: There’s a scene for it, but it’s not the biggest thing. Being a college town it can change quickly as students come and go, but Athens has more of a punk scene and an indie rock scene.

Angie: What was recording the new album like?

Brandon: We recorded with our former audio production teacher Neil Tuuri at his own Amish Electric Chair studio, so it was a pretty comfortable environment! It was a lot of fun getting to experiment with our songs, and we can’t wait to do it again!

Angie: What was the biggest challenge when recording the album?

Kurt: Time was definitely the biggest challenge. Being in the studio, we always want to keep trying things, so we had to make a point of being extra efficient to have more time to experiment at the end.

Angie: What inspired the songwriting and sound?

Brandon: Most of my songwriting is inspired by true life experiences and stories about our friends and our journeys. The sound comes from our love of classic rock, which I got from my father teaching me to play, and mixing in our own more modern influences, along with our passion for vintage gear.

Angie: What are your favourite songs on the album to perform? 

Kurt: Hmm. Well it’s hard to say, and it changes over time. But overall I’d say “Galaxy Drive”, and “Streetlight Hustle”.

Angie: Any plans to release the album on vinyl or CD? 

Kurt: We do plan on releasing the album in CD and Vinyl. We’ll hopefully have CDs in a month or two. We don’t have a timetable on vinyl yet, but we most definitely plan on it, especially considering our name.

Angie: If you could see any musician in concert who would you see and why?

Brandon: I would have to choose Pink Floyd, because I didn’t get to see them in their prime era.

Kurt: Well, I’ll go with Led Zeppelin then. They’re probably the band that has influenced me the most, and they treated playing live as its own separate thing from the studio, so it would be amazing to be able to experience that firsthand.

Angie: What are your goals for the new year?

Brandon: We plan to get back in the studio to work on our next album, and hopefully start touring and playing more festivals, and all around play out more.

You can follow Acrylic Grooves on Facebook.

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