Crash Kings

post brought to you by: dyson


If there was any band I really wanted to see succeed in the music world it would be the Crash Kings. Their music kicks ass. THEY kick ass. What more could you ask of a band?

I was lucky enough to have Tony Beliveau (keyboards and vocals) take some time out of their current tour and answer some questions regarding their sound, success, and what it’s like being a touring band based out of LA.

I highly suggest going to see them play this Sunday 1/31/10 at Great Scott in Boston. (or try to catch a date on the rest of their tour) Their record is phenomenal but live is where they shine. I spent a few years watching, having fun, and getting to know Mike and Tony (sadly don’t know Jason yet) but what I do know is that they are the real deal. They don’t mess around with music. They play what they believe and play what naturally comes out of them. We just happen to be lucky as hell, because what they produce is always incredible.

Check out what Tony had to say:

dyson: First and most importantly, Beatles or Stones?
tony: Beatles

dyson: You’ve all been in bands in smaller cities. What’s the biggest difference you’ve found about being a band in LA?
tony: Well, first of all, it’s different for us cause this is the first true rock band Mike and I have really had together. Until this band, we were a couple of frumpy jazz jammers from Boston. Most bands I see in LA look real good, but lack a true vision and raw talent. When we started out, we looked like shit, but were always playing our east coast asses off. We aren’t into dressing flashy, cause it’s not us, but we’ve grown to appreciate fitted clothing. LA is a wonderful place to start a band. Can’t beat the weather either!

dyson: Can you put on your record and actually enjoy listening to it? Is it something you’ve ever put on and said “DAMN! That’s us??”
tony: I can. I don’t hardly anymore. The only time I might think, “damn..,”. Is when I hear our song on the radio. We’ve grown into our sound, and i think it’s safe to say that (Dave) Sardy had a lot to do with how we formed that sound…

dyson: How was it working with Dave Sardy? He did a hell of a job with the record. But as we all know, musicians and producers can clash. What was Dave’s best influence on the record?
tony: Dave was the perfect producer and mixer for our first record. He really helped with arranging the songs, and would often push us hard, when the clock was ticking. His contribution to the overall sonic outcome of the record was massive. Our record was very much a collaboration, and seldom did we ever not see eye to eye on any one thing.

dyson: What’s your preference: being in the studio or on stage?
tony: There’s nothing like the rush of performing. My drug of choice.

dyson: You guys have been touring pretty damn hard. You must have some great stories. But what is the one best experience you’ve had while being on the road?
tony: Probably playing ‘War Pigs’ with Chris Cornell at the Wiltern in LA.

dyson: If you had one band you’d love to tour with next who would it be? And do you have anyone in line to tour with next?
tony: Soundgarden. We’re working on a tour in march with a bigger act, but we cannot disclose this info yet. Should know this week though. [update: Touring with Jet]

dyson: How does it feel to be the headliners on this current tour?
tony: Headlining has been so crazy, especially in the cities where we’re being played on the radio a lot. People there just to see Crash Kings. Singing along! That’s a trip. You really get a sense of who your real fans are. And it’s so refreshing to see such a diverse group of people coming to our shows.

dyson: Tony, some might say you’ve got a ‘thing’ for keyboard rigs. Your current setup sounds incredible. What would be one thing you’d kill to have added in?
tony: Well, I’m about to add another secret weapon in the mix starting in late february. It’s a vintage kawai ep308. Currently it is undergoing the installment of midi. But it’s pretty much a portable piano with real strings and hammers. After that, I’d say I have to get a Hammond organ back into my rig.

dyson: For a trio your sound is HUGE and has an incredible range of audible greatness. What do you credit most for your sound coming from 3 guys?
tony: The piano and bass sounds like four instruments a lot of the time because of how we spread our chords out and double certain frequencies. The piano can make more sound than two guitars sometimes, and mike bi-amps his bass to make it sound like guitar and bass simultaneously.

dyson: When listening I’d think Jason pounding away on the drums was driving the tunes. But then I hear Mike’s bass hitting me in the chest and lean towards him. When you guys are playing, who feels most like they’re driving the tunes along? Or is a collective sharing?
tony: It’s definitely collective. We are all following each other all the time, taking turns leading.

dyson: What’s the album that you are spinning the most right now?
tony: I’m utterly obsessed with OK Go’s new record, “Of the Blue Colour of the Sky”

Enough reading. You’ve earned it:

Crash Kings – Mountain Man
Crash Kings – Saving Grace
Crash Kings – 1985

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