[Interview # 226]

 1) If you do a Google search for Babyshades it seems like it would mostly bring up the car shades to protect babies from too much sun. What was the idea behind the name? 

Yeah those search bots are pretty literal. Imagine the SEO frustrations Guns N' Roses would’ve encountered! But it's all good. We’re brand new. I think if people want to find us they will. Bands and artists can spend a lot of time trying to come up with the perfect band name. We needed a name. I saw my neighbour's daughter running around in a pair of sunglasses and there it was. I suggested it, I think Brian our drummer at the time, said “I don’t hate it.”, and that was it, we didn’t have to think about it anymore. We were named. But maybe it refers to how children in the future are gonna need to wear sunglasses all the time because as the sun expands it’s gonna get brighter and brighter until one day, it’s like, really bright. 

2) What is it like being Toronto based? 

It’s great. Toronto has a huge music scene that has managed to stay alive and remain productive during the pandemic. I feel like every day I'm coming across new releases from local bands, or discovering new acts or hearing of new projects getting started. It’s a music city with a huge community of super talented artists doing what they have to, and that’s exciting and inspiring. I’ve often thought of moving somewhere outside of the city, you know, finding a shed in the woods and getting all reclusive and creatively productive. But it’s the music scene that keeps me here. That and my crippling fear of sheds in the woods. 

3) What are your thoughts on physical media? Cassettes seem to be perfect for you! 

It’s the best. Physical media is where it all began. Records and tapes forever. It’s where we all developed our ears and tastes for sonic textures and physical interactions with music. Nothing beats the feeling of dropping the needle, or depressing the record and play button at the same time on your TASCAM four track, or your reel to reel. And what better feeling is there then walking into a store, checking out the the staff picks, or digging through the obscurities, and then walking out with a piece of physical art that passed through the hands and brains and eyes of countless musicians and engineers and graphic designers and factory pressing technicians and a bit of cellophane at the end, and then holding above your head and screaming into the street “This is mine!”. And absolutely! I think doing a run of cassettes should definitely be in our future! We’ve got an EP in the works so maybe that’s something you can expect to see from us!

4) What is it like having a retro-wave sound? 

It was a lot of fun for “Corey”. As a child of the 80s I have a lot of tonal and textural connections to the music and art of that decade. And I think our producer and band member, RAZ, did an amazing job of bringing that vibe to life. When we mixed the song with Clifton David Broadbridge at his old Toronto studio, he just had this incredible set up. He was absolutely buried in all this rad vintage analog outboard gear. And one of the things he turned us onto was the Roland Dimension D. The chorus to end all choruses. I wanted to run everything through it. It just had that lush 80s gluey sound. You know, when you’re making something and you want it to feel and sound a certain way, well you gotta say, let’s just do it like it was done. And the retro wave sound is rooted in that era of exploration and discovery with analog synthesis and records still done on tape. In the digital age it's very easy to get sucked into the void of tape plugins and synthesizer plugins, which are great, and I have way too many, but they are only algorithms and modelled reproductions. There’s less chance for error. Nothing beats the physical interaction of signals running through wires and transistors and tubes and the potential for unintended results. So it’s a lot of fun! 

5) Since "Corey" has a music video, do you feel that there is something lacking in music today without MTV playing music videos the same way that they did in the 1980's and 1990’s? 

I think yes and no. I miss the idea of curated video content that channels like MuchMusic and MTV and the like used to provide, and the sense of community that used to rally around that. But that was more than two decades ago. They’ve almost been gone for as long as they were around. In navigating the void since then, I’ve found something liberating and explorational about having to be your own music sleuth. Those channels would pick 20 songs and run them into the ground for months on end in a never ending cycle of top tens and chart crawling. I don’t miss that. I do miss the Wedge though. But now we have online curators like Raised By Cassettes! 

6) Corey Haim or Corey Feldman? 

Both. They’re a package deal. The Frog brothers stay together.

7) Having a live release on your Bandcamp, do you feel that the concert experience is as important as the studio release? 

Absolutely. The concert is the physical experience of expressing your music. Watching our favourite musicians play our favourite songs in person is one of the best parts about being alive. We put out our live EP with the intention to share what our sound was at that time. We were lucky to have recorded it at our last show before the pandemic shut down all rehearsals, otherwise we could have lost touch with what we had been working on. We hadn’t begun any post production on any recordings at that point, so those live recordings were the bare bones of what we were about to build upon. I think it’s interesting to see how the songs are evolving, and hopefully other people will too. 

8) Who is one artist you would absolutely love to play a show with?

The Voidz. That group is incredible. 

9) The "Summerhearts" single out on October 15. What can we expect from that song versus the previous single "Corey”? 

I think somehow even more nostalgia. But nostalgia in a different sense. I like to think of “Corey” as that liberating time of day when you pull out of your work parking lot, or jump on your bike, turn up the volume on your stereo or headphones and tear off into the night. I think of “Summerhearts” as the sunset or the sunrise that makes you stop and look back on everything you've done, or dream of everywhere you're going. 

10) Final thoughts, shout outs, etc... ?? 

I’ll give you a shout out! Thank you Raised By Cassettes for your support and everything you do to help spread the sounds of indie musicians!! You rock!!