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Washed Up Emo

Author: Tom Mullen

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Join Tom Mullen for a look back at when emo was an unknown word, its relevance now and speaks to those deeply involved with the emo/punk/hardcore/post-hardcore scene.
168 Episodes
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Today, we welcome a legend. Guy Picciotto from Rites of Spring and Fugazi. You may also know him from Happy Go Licky or One Last Wish. Insert another obscure band to tweet at me later. In my years of doing this podcast, I never expected to have such legends of the genre. I’m glad I waited because Guy speaks about his feelings about the word emo and how it’s changed over the years. Really eye opening and wasn’t expecting him to expound on that as much as he did. Definitely stick around for that. Rites of Spring were only around for a couple years but still are mentioned when referring to this genre. As the word morphs and changes, Rites of Spring are the big bang of emo worth mentioning to this day. Guy was so eloquent and thoughtful in his responses and since we did the interview at my day job, Atlantic Records. We start the podcast discussing Fugazi’s experience back in the day when they were being courted by Atlantic. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Matt Saincome, Bill Conway and Krissy Howard from The Hard Times! The world famous satirical site stopped by Washed Up Emo on their recent book tour to talk about how the site started, how they come up with all the funny headlines, some regrets they’ve had, and I challenge them to come up with some emo headlines on the spot. A truly inspiring tale of finding something you love and making it your job. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome drummer, William Goldsmith from Sunny Day Real Estate. You may also know him from The Fire Theft, Foo Fighters or his new band called Assertion. William and I had an amazing discussion about how he got into music, meeting Jeremy Enigk, the formation of Sunny Day Real Estate, and the lasting impact of the band. We also talk about how he met his close friend and bandmate in Assertion, Justin Tamminga, who you’ll hear speak up at times during the podcast. William’s story is one of perseverance, admitting when you need to fix yourself and when everything is stacked against you, you keep picking yourself back up. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Steve Pedersen from such bands as Cursive, The White Octave, Slowdown Virginia, and Criteria. The boys in Criteria, after 15 years, have a new album entitled “Years,” coming out on 15 Passenger Records next month and Steve was kind enough to spend some time with Washed Up to talk about it. If you’re listening to this in the future, it’s out now on streaming services. In this episode, we dive into how Steve met Tim and Matt from Cursive, what was the glue and luck behind the Omaha scene, and how that led to Saddle Creek Records starting up. We also discuss how he divides up work and play and how that was achieved while attending law school at Duke. We try and touch on every part of his career and most of all talk about the new Criteria record. Fun fact: It’s Steve’s first 3rd album as a musician. That’s reason enough to celebrate and you’ll learn why later on in the podcast. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Jimmy LaValle from The Album Leaf. Jimmy and I met up in Los Angeles to talk about his early days from the 90s in San Diego being exposed to DIY and screamo to touring with bands like The Get Up Kids, Piebald, and Jimmy Eat World. We also dive into The Album Leaf project, how he met Sigur Rós, the Sub Pop Records days, and how he’s now busy with film scoring. It all makes sense and how each one happened all started with putting yourself out there and being involved. Jimmy’s story is one of constant creativity and making connections. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
We welcome again on the podcast for a 3rd time, Matt Pryor from The Get Up Kids. In this episode we discuss at length, the 20th anniversary of their album "Something to Write Home About."Matt and I discuss the making of the record, we go track by track on stories and lyrics behind the songs and the release of the record on Vagrant. We also dive into the aftermath after it’s release and boom of emo that followed. We spend time reflecting the album’s lasting impact with fans and the band that continues to this day. When an album comes out during a time that connects, yet today, there are kids now that still reference it shows the staying power of this album. From that opening drum beat of 'Ten Minutes' to the guitar pick scrape on 'Holiday' it all floods back for you and someone out there feels the same hearing it for first today today. That’s pretty amazing. Here’s to 20 more The Get Up Kids and happy anniversary to an absolute classic, "Something to Write Home About."Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome singer, guitarist and lyricist, Scott Hobart from Giants Chair. Giants Chair are a midwest band that in the early 90s influenced many in the scene we know today. Starting out on the legendary Caulfield Records, Giants Chair have been off and on over the years and continued to be talked about when this genre and era is mentioned. Now they’re about to release their new album “Prefabylon” out December 6th on Spartan Records. If this is the future, it’s out now on streaming services. I think I giggled or laughed more than most episodes as Scott and I talk about the band’s history, his kids, his day job, and “Prefabylon.” Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Tracy Wilson from Dahlia Seed. You may also know her from her other bands Souvenir, Ringfinger or Positive No. If it is a no, let me explain. Tracy is an icon in the emo scene because she made her own path and her own rules on how to make it in the scene. Tracy and I talk about her many bands, jobs and stories over the years that intertwine the icons of the scene and little known ones that deserve a second look. A free flowing interview done in my apartment in NYC that was really enjoyable to listen to back to. We need more Tracy Wilsons in the world. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Casey James Prestwood from Hot Rod Circuit. Casey and I talk through the history of Hot Rod Circuit and his current endeavors with country music and his band The Burning Angels. Casey recently released a 7” out with fellow friend Josh Berwanger on Lost Broadcast Records that’s worth checking out. If you ever wanted to know the ins and outs of what went down in the early 2000s, Hot Rod Circuit was right there. Casey weaves such a beautiful story through the eras, labels, and both hits and misses. I mostly sit back in this episode and let the master storyteller weave his tale.For more information: CaseyJamesPrestwood.com Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
We welcome back Dan Didier from The Promise Ring to talk about the album “Very Emergency.” Why do you ask? Because today, September 28th, 2019 is the 20th anniversary of this album’s release on Jade Tree Records! To that, I wanted to find a fun way to celebrate and talk about the album. So Dan and I connected earlier this week to discuss many things including the inspiration of the album artwork, the backlash at the time, the one video they did for the album, Kim Colleta’s honest opinion of the album and also her prowess for taping NBA games on VHS, and finally we read some reviews on the album from AV Club, MTV, and Pitchfork. If you haven’t, you should listen to this album now, get a feel for it and take an hour as Dan and I discuss, laugh, and then laugh some more about this album, time, and how many times we had to go to the internet to remember something. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
#158 - Tim Kinsella

#158 - Tim Kinsella

2019-09-1047:30

Today we welcome Tim Kinsella. You may know Tim from such bands as Cap’n Jazz, Owls, Make Believe, and Joan of Arc. He’s currently playing music with his wife in Good Fuck. Tim and I spent time talking about his work ethic, the word emo, and the podcast interview starts with us discussing the recent Joan of Arc documentary and where they got the footage and stuff for it and Tim’s thoughts on saving things… Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Jamie Stillman from EarthQuaker Devices, an effects pedal company out of Akron, Ohio. Jamie was also in bands you may have heard of like The Party of Helicopters, Fringe Candidate, Relaxer (his current band,) and my favorite, Harriet the Spy. Harriet the Spy was a band out of Kent, Ohio that was around from 1993-1998 and was an actual screamo band. They were one of the first screamo bands I ever heard when I started getting into all of this stuff. Also from 1993 to 2002, Jamie ran Donut Friends Records and put out a ton of punk, metal, and shoegaze acts. What’s even more fascinating than his band/label stories, or his time as a tour manager that you’ll hear about, is how Jamie started an effects pedal company. It’s a testament to pursuing what you love leads to your work.  Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Jade and I connected early on during the first album, "Real Stories Of True People Who Looked Kind Of Like Monsters." I was a huge fan and supporter. Following that debut, it was great to see the mainstream press take a liking to him after the amazing follow-up, "The Yunahon Mixtape." Now the album coming out August 16th, "Basking in the Glow," should propel him to another level. It’s that good. On the podcast, Jade and I discuss his early music life getting heckled, the new album, and there’s a good portion about the NBA, which we’re both huge fans of. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today, we welcome Chris Crisci from The Appleseed Cast. Chris has been on my list for the entire 8 years of this podcast’s existence. I am honored to finally have him on the podcast. I loved Chris’ appreciation for the scene, constantly challenging himself, and not resting while making the band work alongside his day job, family and life. The band’s discography is one of my favorites in all of my music and to finally hear some of the questions I’ve had over the years was a true treat. Last, to note, there is a new album by the band entitled “The Fleeting Light of Impermanence” out of Graveface Records that we discuss. You can start listening to this on Friday, or if you’re listening to this in the future, it’s on your favorite streaming service. Chris was honest, sweet, and thoughtful throughout this beautiful conversation and I hope you enjoy.Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
#154 - Ian MacKaye

#154 - Ian MacKaye

2019-06-1001:09:293

A few months ago, I asked a couple of prior podcast guests Brian Lowit from Lovitt Records and now Dischord Records and John Davis from Q and Not U, if they thought an in-person interview could happen. Through their help and a little timing of a personal wedding in DC set this plan in motion. As this podcast gets into its 8th year with no signs of slowing down, I thought it was time to have the person partly responsible for why I first got into straightedge, punk, hardcore, and the DIY ethos I continue to carry through during my day job in the music industry at large. Ian couldn’t have been more gracious and after some back and forth and a nice Delta airlines agent, I was there with enough time to do the interview and make the wedding later that day. I never expected to have the opportunity to talk to one of my heroes in this setting and for Ian to spent a couple of hours showing me around the Dischord house, the archives and then an interview will be remembered forever.Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome Mitch Wilson from No Knife! Mitch and I have spoken to each other over the years and finally got some time to chat. We got deep into the San Diego scene, meeting Rocket from the Crypt and Drive like Jehu and early days of being on a label associated with a major. How No Knife met The Get Up Kids, their deep relationship with Lazycain and Jimmy Eat World. We find out that we both utilize a set of jokes that we use relentlessly to our friends and family. Finally, chat about his life as a dad and you’ll hear his son a couple of times in the podcast. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Today we welcome John Vanderslice. I found out about John through his album in 2000 called, Mass Suicide Occult Figurines, on Barsuk Records. It stuck with me and I’ve followed him since. Last month, he released his latest album “The Cedars” on Native Cat Recordings. He’s on tour with Pedro the Lion and worth a listen if you’ve never dived into the mind of Vanderslice. We talk about how he started late in music, how creating music takes some narcissism to survive, about the loss of life, and the depression that he’s been dealing with, including how this album saved his life. Plus, we dive into a discussion about having fame and critical acclaim early on in your career and what that does to you during and after. This is probably one of the more emotional as John opened up about his struggles with dependency on drugs and the battle he has every day with life, creating art, and keeping his recording studios, Tiny Telephone, afloat. Many of your favorite albums have been recorded there like ones from Death Cab for Cutie, Sleater-Kinney, Deerhoof, The Mountain Goats, The Magnetic Fields, and Spoon. A man not afraid to say what he feels and talk it out, I think you’ll enjoy this discussion.Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
A documentary was released a few years ago called "Don’t Break Down," about Jawbreaker. Fun fact: Dan Didier, drummer for the Promise Ring, Maritime and Vermont was the producer of the film! After seeing a screening of the film, I was fascinated at how much footage they had of Jawbreaker. I found out later from Dan that Adam was the one that has been saving everything. When I approached Adam to do the podcast a couple of years ago, Adam said we would need to wait as they were just about to announce all of the reunion shows. Recently in Brooklyn, Adam and I finally sat down to talk. We discuss where these archival/documentation thoughts started in his life and how the video store that he owned for years was feeding that same itch. We also discuss what it’s like being in Jawbreaker now and not being as neurotic about taking photos or saving the flyers. In the same light, Adam is fully realizing how important these things are later and the love for his band is how everyone should think about their own band’s legacy, big or small. Bonus, we talk about emo and how Adam didn’t hear them being called emo until after they broke up. Finally, a couple of rad Nirvana stories about Adam seeing them for the first time and knowing the first single was going to be “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
Wow, we made it to 150 episodes. Crazy to think about all the folks that have come on  to share their story with you and I. To that, a big part of this is agreeing to be open and talk about their music. American Football gets the gold star. Before the reunions, in January 2014, Mike was on the podcast for the first time chatting about his career. For LP2, I had everyone in American Football individually to discuss reuniting and what it was like to write together again.So for LP3 I wanted to do something different…This time, I got Mike and Nate together in a room in NYC to discuss every single song in detail on LP3. We go from beginning to end on the writing process, the disagreements, sequencing, and why they made certain decisions for every song. Mike also recommends some bands I’ve never heard before and Nate reads an email he sent to the band passionately discussing why he feels his track listing order is the way it should go. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
David Bazan has always been on my list to be on the podcast, it just took almost 8 years. I always sorta thought he’d want nothing to do with me or the podcast. As with this stuff, I got over it and just asked. It worked and fittingly, David has also resurrected Pedro the Lion, with the first album under that name in 15 years. The album “Phoenix” out on Polyvinyl Records, is an amazing return. David and I speak about his religious upbringing, lots of Fugazi and we talk a lot about what music does to us when we close our eyes. Specifically that journey that music takes us on and what story you end up telling in the end. I think you’ll enjoy and I was nervous for a lot of this. I don’t know why, just meant a lot I guess. Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/washedupemo)
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