Spaceface to Perform at The Heavy Anchor June 30
St. Louis, be prepared for a show that will melt your Spaceface. The Memphis psychedelic rock band, led by Jake Ingalls (who also plays guitar and synthesizer for the Flaming Lips), is back in St. Louis and ready to rock and roll.
Last time I caught these guys at Blank Space, it was magic. I imagine this show will be nothing short of amazing. A quote from band member Daniel Quinlan sums it up perfectly: “Imagine if Ziggy Stardust was going to a house party with Jack White.”
Learn all you want to know about the band in this Q+A with Daniel Quinlan below!
How did the band get started?
We have been touring as Spaceface for about three years. Matt and Jake grew up together in the same neighborhood in a Memphis suburb, and have been playing music together since they were in middle school or even younger. Eric and Jake played hockey together as kids and then met back up randomly one day on the street near the house Matt & Jake were living in during college. They all moved into a house together and started up Spaceface while Eric and Matt finished up school. The rest of us were more or less friends of friends and would come over to the house and hang out or play music and so on.
Eventually, it kinda all just came together and got more organized. We started building a light show out of whatever materials we could get our hands on and working up each others’ tunes. I think in some form or another, most of us have stayed living with or near each other over the past few years, and the cycle of building a theatrical show and writing our style of psychedelic tunes has just become our lives.
Do you set up the stage by yourself? What inspires the ideas?
Hahaha! Yes, we have been setting up our own stages since we started. Still on that level for the time being.
The idea came from trying our hardest to stand out from other bands. Jake once said “We knew if you wanted your friends to come see you, if you wanted strangers to come see you, you had to stand out.” You go to shows to see crazy stuff and get moved by a part in a song that you’ve heard a hundred times. Why wouldn’t you do all you could to make that happen?
So we built a light show and added lasers, smoke cannons, and theatrics to our live performances. We have a couple creatures our friend Natlie Wetzel has designed and built for us that should be making some appearances in the show. One is a giant squid and the other is an astronaut lion cub. Along with that, there will be all kinds of lights and lasers and dancing. Imagine if Ziggy Stardust was going to a house party with Jack White.
What was a big moment for you as a group?
Well, we played Hang Out Music Festival in Gulf Shores, AL a couple years ago. That was probably our biggest audience. Actually, we were there to play an after-party, but an artist canceled his set and we got to jump in the slot. Opening for The Flaming Lips is always a good time, too. However, the biggest moment as a group was probably something more like recording the first EP or writing “Carnivore,” which I think has become a favorite song.
How would you describe your newest LP? When can we get our hands on it?
We went into the studio back in Memphis in December and recorded 13 tracks in about eight days with our buddy, Calvin Lauber. It’s our first one so we were pretty excited to actually get these songs we have been playing for months on a recording.
Jarrod Evans (who has worked with Broncho records and Sufjan Stevens) works out of Black Lodge Studios in Norman, OK–not too far from OKC. He has really done some magic to the tracks, and I can’t wait for people to hear these tunes once they’re finished.
We haven’t set a release date on it quite yet, but I would look for it later this year.
What does Spaceface stand for? How do you want to be viewed?
The name Spaceface came from another Lips roadie describing one of his old bands. He said, “We didn’t have any of that “mybook” or “spaceface” or nothing so we never really made it.” Jake told us that story when he got back to the house (where most of us lived) and we thought it was a mix of goofy and cosmic, so it stuck. We’re really just some goofy dudes and we always tried not to take ourselves too seriously so that name fit rather well.
As far as standing for something less tangible … If somehow we can give someone the same feeling, emotion, or experience I know we have had seeing and listening to music, then I can feel good about what we’ve done. It means more than our reactions will show when someone comes up after a show and says “that riff in that song was incredible” or “I love that melody in that part” and they’ll start humming it. I love that.
The idea is to make the show a full, encompassing experience and not just going to see a band play music. It’s the thought of people never seeing the same show twice and having a different experience every time.
What are you listening to right now?
Well, as I’m typing this, I’m giving our tunes a final listen before I send them to our friend who is going to put them on a lathe for a special tour run 7″.
However, on just about any day you can find Eric spinning Beach Boys deep cuts in his apartment, but the last thing I saw on Matt’s iPod on his flight to Denmark was The Crunge by Led Zeppelin. Jake can be more of a wild card when he is DJing in the van or bus. Anything from Angel Olsen to King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard is up in the air.
Have you played St. Louis before? Any fun stories to tell?
So our first time in STL we played at an art factory about 2 years ago to absolutely no one. The bartender (Rosa) thought we were so great she said next time you come we’ll hook you up somewhere better. Next time, we played Blank Space on Cherokee, and it was a blast. There was a group of people that called themselves MOONPUPPIES that essentially just show up to festivals and shows in these giant towering crazy costumes. They randomly hit us up the day of the show and asked if they could come dance at our show and be part of it, so of course we said yes. I think we kinda eat stuff like that up.
We spent the next four days in STL exploring the city, and now going there feels like second nature. Love Seoul Taco, love hanging on Cherokee, and I think we’ve been to City Museum 2-3 times each by now.
Catch Spaceface at the Heavy Anchor June 30.