For this week’s tasty musical discovery, we caught up with The Trophy Fire, one of our SB7 artists to talk about their sound and their process. For those who may not be familiar with their sound, Ben Flanagan (Vocals & Guitars) took a swing at describing it:
It’s always hard for me to describe our music so I like hearing it from other people. People often compare us to other bands which I suppose is a good way to do it; it’s funny and surprising to hear what they say sometimes. I’ve been incredibly flattered when I’ve heard we sound like a heavy Tears for Fears or Doves or The Killers but then on the other side I’ve also been told my voice sounds like the guy from The Goo Goo Dolls…not really what I want to hear. We just want people to like it and come out to our shows. They can say we sound like KMFDM or Olivia Newton John as long as they support us.
If that’s not enough to tempt you into giving them a listen, AllMusic.com describes their sound as “a perfectly seasoned balance of ’80s radio pop and emo-kissed post-grunge.” To find out some more about these compelling San Franciscan alt-rockers, we asked Flanagan a few questions.
What are three different types of venues or situations where you would feel really good about playing?
We’ve been pretty lucky in the venues we’ve gotten to play. I guess for me it’s more about going on the road with more bands that we love. The best thing about being on tour with one of your favorite bands is getting to see them every night. It’s so much fun to finish your set, go grab a beer and then watch one of your favorite bands from the side of the stage. I suppose there a couple hundred artists out there I would like to do that with.
How are you different from other artists in your genre?
I’m not really sure what our genre is exactly so it’s a little hard to to say how we are different. We have a pair of brothers in the band and we don’t have a bass player so I suppose that sets us a part some. We toured the country for a month and a half supporting Dredg in a Jeep Cherokee so I suppose that’s a little different. Maybe the most fun tour we’ve ever done and certainly not the most comfortable.
What is a source of inspiration when you are feeling stuck on something?
I go through phases were I feel like I have nothing beautiful or poignant or relevant to say and then I will go through spells in which I can’t stop writing. I still don’t know if there is a sole source of inspiration of would be consistently channeling it. I wish I knew. The music almost always comes before the lyrics for The Trophy Fire so sometimes I will read a book, or see something beautiful or strange, or overhear a stranger talking and go “ok, that’s what that song is about” and I start writing.
What is the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?
The biggest risk is probably continuing to be in a rock band honestly. Making it our main priority and going for it. It’s an insane thing if you break it down. I don’t mean that in a bad way…but it’s a pretty strange job.