Our media team caught up with Nathan Willett and Matt Maust of indie rock band Cold War Kids at SXSW to talk festival happenings, live sound, and their upcoming album Dear Miss Lonely Hearts.
Music Connection: What brings you to SXSW 2013?
Nathan Willett: We are playing a bunch of shows, doing some of these little one-op play a song on the radio thing, doing a bunch of interviews – the whole deal.
MC: Any advice for first-timers?
Nathan: Yeah, you know it’s hard. I think you just have to do everything you can do and hope that good things happen. From the first year that we were here, we have our lawyer, booking agent and record label that we all met on this first trip that are still with us today – so yeah good things are possible.
Matt Maust: I’d say don’t drink until you have to.
MC: What’s pre-production like for a festival this large?
Nathan: It’s almost a lack of production. You’re constantly having you know, 20-minute changeovers and really bad stage sound and really bad everything.
Maust: I think the best thing you can do at that point is just know your songs really well, so we rehearsed a lot this last two months – like everyday.
Nathan: And just have the vibe of playing a show as though it was really fun even when it’s not ‘cause there’s nothing worse than people complaining on stage about it not being good-sounding.
MC: Are personal sound engineers more valuable at these festivals?
Nathan: Yeah I mean if that somebody is… I mean you can spend a lot of money on somebody who doesn’t know your music and they won’t make it sound good. If you have somebody that is really familiar and can make you sound great, then yeah, it’s totally worth it.
Dear Miss Lonely Hearts is set for release on April 2nd with a tour to follow. For more on Cold War Kids, visit http://coldwarkids.com.