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Daydream Echo Chamber – an interview with Seven Purple Tigers

“Daydream Echo Chamber is the new EP from German-American indie rockers Seven Purple Tigers. Featuring five tracks including recent singles ”Clarity” and ”Smoke Communiqué”, the record was written and recorded during a prolific period during the pandemic that also included four other songs that were released during 2021 as well as more material that has yet to be released.

We chatted with singer Austin Horn about the new EP and how his and guitarist Philip’s backgrounds influenced the band’s sound.

Hi Guys! How’s everything going right now?
Great! We’re very excited about finally releasing this EP and we can’t wait to see how the world reacts to it! We’re hoping that these songs resonate with people and have a positive impact. Since just Phil and I have done the bulk of the legwork on this one, its feels great to finally have it off our shoulders so we can get on to the next round of songs!

What classic album cover is your current mood?
Captain Beefheart – Trout Mask Replica. That is all.  

Daydream Echo Chamber”, your excellent new EP, is out this week. When did you write and record the tracks?
Thank you! A great deal of the songs and many of the tracks that made the final versions were written and recorded during the lockdown phase of the pandemic back in 2020/21. We had nothing but time and could lock ourselves in our ramshackle little studio (which is built into the former restaurant of an old German Inn). That accounts for “Time For Me,” “Tantalus” and “Dangerous Kicks.” The little set of ideas that would later become “Clarity” was also recorded in this time. “Smoke Communiqué” was written during a recording session for our 2021 single, “Ignorance Is Blitz” though it wouldn’t be recorded until this year’s sessions.  Clarity’s demo got finished in a 15 hour recording session after rediscovering the file, and we gave “Time For Me” a shiny new electronic production after originally having it as an acoustic track.

The new songs seem to have a lighter, more-80s sound compared to your debut album. Was this deliberate or just how they developed?
We’re always striving to write the “perfect song” with the “ideal sound,” and we go into our recording sessions with that in mind. Through a myriad of factors including our ongoing learning process in how to produce and engineer records as well as the limitations of our scuzzy little studio, the final products end up taking on a life and sound of their own. Each installment in our discography is representative of our journey from two kids in a 60s flat in Krakow, Poland with nary a clue what they were doing to our current selves; much better than before, but always learning and working to improve.

As with any artist, we’re our harshest critics and in the wake of that 2019 release we had a hard look at ourselves and dove headfirst into how we can create the sound we’re always dreaming of. Our desires, musically and artistically, morphed a bit as we ourselves matured, and that’s reflected in the slight shift in vocal style and songwriting, starting with last year’s single releases. Even we don’t know what the next one is going to end up sounding like but we’re just as excited as anyone to find out!

Huge thanks go to our mixing team of Sebastian Schütze and Bernhard Pausch as well as our mastering engineer, Flo Siller, for making the final tracks sound exactly as we dreamed them to be!

If you could only listen to one record, what would it be?
This is, of course, an impossible question for either of us to answer. At least for now, we somehow both agree that it would be the Rolling Stones’ Exile On Main St (the deluxe version of course, couldn’t live without “Plundered My Soul” and “Pass The Wine”). Exile is somehow always right for the mood. It feels like life; light, breezy, fun as hell and it puts a smile on our faces from the second “Rocks Off” starts.

Austin is American, Philip is German – what do you think the different nationalities bring to Seven Purple Tigers?
Funny enough we feel like we’re both atypical examples of our respective nationalities in terms of the core associations one would have with being “American” or “German.” We definitely embody a rather “American” showmanship and bravado on stage, and we pair that with a more European life philosophy – more bohemian in some respects. We always describe our sound as “transatlantic” which makes it hard to pin down as being clearly American or European, or even to a particular genre.

How did you come up with the band name?
We used to have a different name and another group with an eerily similar backstory to ours beat us to the punch, releasing under the same name shortly before we went to record our debut album back in 2018. We took it as a golden opportunity to rebrand, and Phil wrote some 200 band names in a note sheet on his phone. To be completely honest, Seven Purple Tigers was the name that made us laugh the hardest yet the one that we couldn’t get out of our heads. We took that as a good sign. It grew on us and now we can’t imagine what life would be like if we weren’t Seven Purple Tigers.

What were your influences when you were growing up?
Everything, really. We’re both such sponges for music and soaked up inspiration from pretty much anything we heard growing up, regardless of decade or genre, and still do.  

Phil remembers beginning with tapes he received or just found in libraries which included Johnny Cash, Simply Red, Tom Waits (which he remembers hearing at the tender age of 10) and Santana. It was Metallica that inspired him to pick up the guitar, by way of Guitar Hero (quote Phil, “playing real guitar seemed easier than mastering the buttons”). At 14 or so, he began diving into the world of indie music, discovering Devendra Banhart, The Smiths, Jeff Buckley and John Frusciante’s solo efforts, influences that would be passed on to me in Krakow when we met that were instrumental in forming the SPT vocal style.

For me, my parents played a lot of Beatles, Motown music and Van Morrison when I was little; I remember being danced to sleep with Sam Cooke. My dad got me into harder rock as I got a bit older, and classic rock and grunge became my favorites for years to come. Foo Fighters were huge for me, as were Zeppelin, both bands leading me to pick up playing the guitar at 11. I also loved (and still love) radio soft alternative from the late 90s and early 00s – bands like Goo Goo Dolls and Third Eye Blind. I was a metal head in high school (lots of Slipknot) before discovering indie, hip hop and electronic music in college. I actually DJ’d for the two years prior to meeting Phil and starting the band.

What would go on your signature pizza and what would it be called?
Love this question! It wouldn’t be a SPT signature pie without being buried under a metric ton of parmigiano (Phil would put it on ice cream if we let him). Under said cheese mountain would have to be crème fraîche, enough garlic to rid Victorian England of vampires, mozzarella and a garnish of fresh arugula. Naming it would be the hard part. Daydream Pizza Chamber? I dunno, we’ll workshop that one.

What do you have planned for 2023?
Finding a label and management so that we can record the next album! We are broke now. We also hope to tour around Europe and play as many festivals as we can in the summer. If you’re a label or booking agent reading this, call us… we’ll make you that pizza.

The American-German indie band Seven Purple Tigers has been crafting their unique transatlantic blend of rock and pop since 2015. From a disused, historic German Inn converted into a recording studio, Austin Horn and Phil Dyszy founded the band in Krakow, Poland. In addition to drummer Felix Schwer and bassist Sebastian Heieck, the band often summons a slew of guest musicians for their live performances, on par with headlining acts. In Summer 2022, the Tigers played a string of festival dates, and their Daydream Echo Chamber EP is planned for a November 11th release.

You can find out more about the band on their website and follow them for the latest news on Instagram and Facebook.

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