Floral Interview: “I feel perfectly neutral”


Floral play ArcTanGent this August.

California duo Floral are playing ArcTanGent this year and ply a delightful brand of upbeat and warm instrumental math rock. As you will know, we dig both these things immensely and so here Floral are within Overblown’s digital pages. It has been a bit of a spell since their last release (The Second Floral EP came out in November 2015) but they assure us they will return sure with more odd and engagingly mad moments of musical mescal.

We spoke to both Nate and Ty from the group about their music plans for 2019, their upcoming appearance at ArcTanGent, and the issues that some people have with milk! Lovely boys.

Overblown: It has been over three years since the release of The Second Floral EP. Any plans for new music in 2019?

Nate: Yes totally! We have been working on a new record which we will hopefully have out by summer 2019! In the meantime, we have a bunch of other projects we are involved in. I just put out a 2 track thing of some solo electronic stuff and Ty just put out an entire album under the name “Winery” which is sort of like “slow-core” music if anyone is familiar with that genre. We have been sitting on it for about four years so it’s nice to have that out finally! On top of that, there is still so much non-floral music that we do which we are hoping to start promoting soon.

Ty: We also wrote this stuff under the name Elaine The Singer, more math rock where I play guitar and Nate plays bass. If we have time we’ll record more of that too. But the new floral record will take precedence.

Overblown: What direction is the music heading in?

Nate: Floral has stayed more or less the same over the years. However, we are experimenting with dual guitar parts and perhaps some more effects 😉

Ty: Maybe the new stuff is a little more complex. It certainly feels like it’s more of a bitch to learn, but the process is different too so that could account for part of the difference. We’re doing things remotely now, as opposed to being in the same room.

Overblown: A word that I hear repeated when people discuss your music is “colourful”. How do you feel about that word being associated with your music?

Nater: It depends on the context. People assign colour differently in terms of music. I don’t have synesthesia but if I did I would probably see our music as just a few very vibrant colours. All of our music is more or less in one key and we reuse a lot of similar techniques and motifs so in that context there isn’t too many “colours” present. But to each their own!

Ty: I feel perfectly neutral about that word.

Overblown: Who creates the artwork for your releases? It is quite ebullient. What inspires it?

Nate: The artwork for both EPs is a collaboration with our friend Katherine Linetsky.

Ty: Katherine Linetsky does wonderful drawings, and then Nate fucks them up good on the computer. By the way, I have never seen or heard the word “ebullient” before. Thanks for adding that to my vocabulary.

Artwork for The Second Floral EP.

Overblown: You’re playing ArcTanGent this year. Psyched?

Nate: Oh yes. We had such a blast last time. Really stoked to be playing on Thursday so we can chill and watch all the bands.

Overblown: What is your favourite flower? Why?

Nate: Ummmmmmm an Orchid.

Ty: The flower of weed.

Overblown: Your song titles are very playful. How do you come up with them?

Ty: I wouldn’t say playful, I actually think of them as more ebullient. It’s different for different songs. Nate came up with “Cars” and “Aquarius Theater”, so he can answer for those. A couple of examples, “Balancing Act” was initially going to be our band name. “Town Picnic” was because one of the riffs reminded Nate of the band Town Portal (who we both love) and I saw a sign for a town picnic outside city hall and suggested we use that as an homage to them. “Spirit Marathon” was from one of those high school marquees, and “Marsh Partition” is an anagram of “Spirit Marathon” because I feel like those songs sort of go hand in hand.

Overblown: What are your plans for 2019?

Nate: We will be playing a bunch and recording the new record.

Ty: I’ll probably buy a season pass to Raging Waters in the summer. Gotta refill my asthma inhaler soon too. The Qvar, that is. My albuterol sulfate is almost full right now, so I should be good off that for a little while.

Overblown: Why do you think so many people have a hard time digesting milk?

Nate: I know I do.

Ty: Boy, does he ever.

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