Tom Blacklung “Eyes” at Shea Stadium January 2014
Butter The Children “Boozer” at Tinderbox Festival 2013
“Butter the Children have this great wild energy, and their tonality is so different than a lot of what we work with on SongCraft, so I was excited to get them in the studio with us,” Arthur says. “Like all the sessions we did down in Austin, the challenge is baked into the process: we only had three hours to write and record the song, so there’s really no choice as far as pulling the song together quickly. Either it comes quickly…or there’s no song.”
It’s refreshing to meet bands that actually have a pair of balls these days. Thankfully, Brooklyn still has its package in gear with Butter The Children featuring the very evocative Ray Weiss on guitar, Inna Mkrtycheva on vocals, Jordyn Blakely on drums, and Me + You alum (ex Fiasco) Jon Edelstein on bass.
"Perhaps the biggest surprise is music itself. Susan O’Dea’s directs the musically sharp house band “The Zack Attacks” (Bob McSmith, Tobly McSmith, Steve Espinola and Jordyn Blakely). Rather than the bouncy, syncopated rhythms of a stereotypical musical, the songs here are set to contemporary rock, including a well-played cover of “Where is My Mind?” by the alt-rock band The Pixies."
Butter The Children playing ‘Robyn Byrd’ at Tinderbox Festival
Butter The Children’s debut EP True Crime is pop music scuffed up with gritty punk stylings. And I say this in the best possible way. The Interwebz might be drowning in 90s nostalgia these days, but we can make an exception for this Brooklyn 4-piece that is high on visceral drum fills and low on gimmicky synths. For a proper introduction, we went straight to the source:
What’s behind the name?
Jordyn: We just think the emphasis and importance behind band names can be pretty stupid.
Ray: My personal favorite position.
Inna: Absolutely nothing. Our old bass player made it up.
I’ve heard you disagree amongst each other on the likes of Fugazi, Radiohead, Bruce Springsteen, and Bob Dylan. Is there an artist or band you can all agree on?
Jordyn: The Smiths? I feel there is a small handful.
Ray: Donkey Kong Country Soundtrack.
Inna: Nirvana’s one.
Thoughts on the genre label “post-punk”?
Jordyn: I hear a lot of people use the term but I think its meaning has become a bit broadened and misinterpreted. Genres as a whole are pretty loaded… but I would say I’m a fan of post punk though.
Tell us about True Crime. From where did you take reference in writing the tunes?
Jordyn: We like dark stuff that’s in the news, and have lots of it in our personal lives too.
Ray: People die and do awful shit most of the time they are alive anyway.
Inna: A bunch of the songs are about real life crime cases, like the Charles Stuart case and the Amanda Knox case, stuff like that. We kind of built the record around those tropes and themes.
What’s the most exciting, and most frightening part of putting your music out in the world?
Jordyn: Most exciting, finishing writing a song that you would listen to if you hadn’t wrote it. Frightening: People being indifferent to what you are doing.
Inna: The hardest part is probably just doing it and putting yourself out there to be criticized–but what alternative is there, really.
If you could see broad social disruption in one aspect, what would it be?
Jordyn: People walking on the wrong side of the sidewalk.
Ray: Picking your nose in public.
Inna: Soviet Russia.
What’s up next for you?
Jordyn: Some badass shows, hopefully more badass and more of them in the future. Our album should be out this winter, hopefully it still feels badass since the songs were written long ago.
Ray: Going to get some breakfast in a bit.
Inna: We’re hoping to release our first full length in late 2013 or early 2014.
What’s your dream bill?
Jordyn: Something with backup dancers. Like if Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan could be the backup dancers and be totally wasted while doing it.
Ray: Mark E. Smith & Ray Weiss do Pat Benatar.
Inna: Pixies, Tina Turner, Guided by Voices, Wall of Voodoo, & Hole.
What is your WILD Wish?
Jordyn: Smoke a spliff with Leonardo DiCaprio.
Ray: Voting Green Party.
Inna: I want to go to Atlantic City and blow like $10,000.