If you attended last year’s Fiestas at Johnson Field, you probably were drawn into the wild party that the Northern California band known as Vista Kicks threw. Just one year later, they are planning on making yet another stop by the 505 on their Booty Shakers Ball Tour. They took some time to give the Daily Lobo a quick email interview — answers are by the band members Sam Plecker and Nolan LeVine, written as joint statements.
Q: It’s been close to a year since you have played at the UNM Fiestas. Between then and now, you’ve released your first full-fledged album and are set for a long tour. What other news should your fans be filled in on?
A: We love Albuquerque. Stoked to be back. Our first full-length has been received nicely. Our shows are getting bigger every time we go out on tour...We can’t complain. We got off the road in December 2017 and went straight into the studio after the new year and recorded another record. Expect it this summer.
Q: I noticed that your Albuquerque show openers included Treehouse Basement and Eugene, both also played at the 2017 UNM Fiestas. Was this a friendship that developed at Fiestas? If not how did you get in touch?
A: We didn’t get a chance to talk to them all that much, but we enjoyed their sets. When we figured out we were coming back to Albuquerque, we thought, “Those guys definitely have to come play the show with us.”
Q: Between “Chasing Waves” and “Booty Shakers Ball,” what kind of audible change can listeners expect from the band’s sound?
A: “Chasing Waves,” in a completely awesome way, is a little more adolescent. We recorded it before going on tour in our hometown of Roseville, California, up by Sacramento...“BSB” has a maturity in song writing and structure. A lot more raw, honest and organic...with pulp.
Q: What kind of goals did you set out to accomplish with your new album, “Booty Shakers Ball”?
A: We wanted to make a feel-good album that showed our fans and other musicians that you can make a record on the cheap side, recorded by yourselves. We didn’t go spend all this money at a fancy studio — Sam tracked the record at our studio spot in Los Angeles, and we love how it sounds.
Q: I get the sense that the band is lightly channeling a hint of Beatles vibes into their new album — is that correct? If not, what were some artists that have influenced the sound of “Booty Shakers Ball”?
A: There’s four of us, we all have long hair, we play rock music, hell...we even embraced a “Rubber Soul”-sque album cover. Of course, we are four of the biggest Beatles fans you’ll ever meet. But there are so many more artists we idolize and whose influence we draw from: James Brown, Black Sabbath, Otis Redding, Neil Young, Chance the Rapper, Bahamas and Sam Cohen to name a few.
Q: If there was a specific incident or moment that inspired a song, what was the song and what was the moment?
A: “Giuliana” was a song we were really wrestling with lyrically during the writing process. We had this really rad groove and melody and the name of Derek’s soon to be niece, Giuliana, but we were struggling with everything else. Luckily Giuliana popped out before we had to track it — Derek finished the lyrics that night. The rest was a breeze.
Q: Are there any interesting tour stories that you can share?
A: We play a game called What Are the Odds while we’re on the road, and it tends to be the cause of many good stories. If you’ve ever played, you know what I mean.
Q: If the band was to have any featured female artist, alive or dead, featured on a song, who would that artist be?
A: One hundred percent Amy Winehouse...or Joni Mitchell...or Etta James.
Q: What is each of the band member’s favorite song of their new album?
A: It changes every time we listen to the record. It just depends where you’re at mentally, but right now our favorites are:
Sam — “Work For Me”
Derek — “Love and Paranoia”
Nolan — “Please Don’t Make It Harder”
Trevor — “Giuliana”
Q: Lastly, what can fans expect from Vista Kicks’ newest tour?
A: Fans can expect to have the time of their lives, shaking their booties like they’ve never shook their booties before — and that’s a Vista Kicks guarantee.
Vista Kicks will be performing with Treehouse Basement and Eugene on Feb. 17 at the Moonlight Lounge. The show is a 21 and over event and tickets are $8.
Colton Newman is the photo editor for the Daily Lobo. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or on Twitter @cnewman101.