“Take Five” is an interview series that focuses on Chicago’s ever-growing music scene by giving you insight on the city’s best local acts via the best source possible: the acts themselves. We ask five questions, and they give five answers. Here is the latest installment featuring Rabble Rabble.
are one of four bands playing Beats & Blogs: A Musical Hotspot
this Saturday, December 18, at Subterranean, presented by Loud Loop Press and Betta Promotions
Psychedelic punk? Blusey psychedelic? Acid grunge? Regardless of how you categorize them, Rabble Rabble - comprised of vocalist/guitarist Ralph Darski, guitarist/vocalist Todd McCafrey, bassist Matt Ciarleglio and drummer Kaylee Preston - make quite a ruckus. This year has been quite a ride for the band and included the release of the debut full-length Bangover
, a video-documented tour
and praise from quite a few local websites and publications, most recently in this great piece in today's Chicago Reader
. We caught up with Rabble Rabble member Ralph Darski for a splendid chat with about quite a few topics including the band's sound, their involvement with Commune Records
and much more.
On your website and in many online publications, the band's been described as "Psych Punk." Was that term adopted on your own to define your sound or just something you ran with when others starting referring to your music as that?
In ways, we have just ran with it. It is a title that seems to be most appropriate. Everyone in the band has such different musical backgrounds that our sound tends to fluctuate a lot. If all four of us were to DJ a party it would get pretty weird. Ranging from Chopin to The Stooges, Rage Against the Machine to Kid Cudi, Daft Punk to Jeff the Brotherhood, it would be all there. Our sound generally roams in the punk-psych-grunge realm. Though we try not to limit ourselves to any one genre.
Rabble Rabble is on the new Cafe Mustache comp
, which was put out by Commune Records
. Can talk a little about Commune Records and its mission?
Commune Records is in essence a collective of friends helping each other out. We started the label with our friends The Great Society Mind Destroyers in 2009 and have since made more friends. Commune functions on the idea that your success is my success and vise versa. There is no need to competition. So, when it comes to releases who ever wants to or can at the time throws down funds for the project or helps print out sleeves and cut them. Everyone has their strengths. Some of us know more about recording and some know more about distribution and press. But everyone always promotes each other as much as they can. That's the one really nice perk. Instead of having just your band members promote your new release, you have all of the artists on Commune helping spread the word. Simply cause we are all stoked on it, but also because each release is partly everyone's on the label.
A lot of us also share equipment or can have that peace of mind that if my amp blow out, I could use someone else's with just a phone call. Having the full steam of Commune behind each release makes getting the word out much easier. Some one might learn about a Commune band through another Commune band's press. Having that notoriety is a priceless asset. Also, we all seek out new friends to join our collective, basically there is strength in numbers in this age of millions of indie bands.
On Rabble Rabble's Facebook page, you guys wrote
, "Our new songs are so heavy you're going to have back problems after listening to'em." Are the new songs metal-type heavy or just heavier when compared to your older material?
They aren't getting heavier in the Metal kind of way. Rather they are getting more dense and layered. We are also trying out some new instruments and switching who plays what. We practice twice a week and have done so for the last 3 years. It is really easy to get stuck in rut. Luckily, we know each others styles so well now that we check each other constantly. It's the only way to progress from this point.
Speaking of new songs, when can we expect a new release and tour?
Some time this coming spring, we will release a 7" and and online single on Gimme That Sound Records
out of New York. We recorded the two songs during our last tour in a barn in upstate New York. Prior to that, however, we'll put out another Live EP in February, and that'll be out on Commune Records. It'll include a special surprise that we won't speak of now.
As for touring. We have some plans on heading down to Austin to check out SXSW this year. And we'll do a small tour to support the single when that is released. No dates set yet on that however.
Finally, Rabble Rabble is playing Beats & Blogs on 12/18 with White Mystery, Hollows and Radar Eyes. Can you talk a little bit about the support the band has gotten from local blogs and publications and what it means to be playing with those Chicago bands?
We are super stoked about the Beats & Blogs show. The coverage from the various blogs has been great, and we are very honored to play this show and to be mentioned in all these outstanding publications. We all check and follow all of them, and it is always quality. In ways, this show is an awesome gathering of forces and celebration of the great music scene that we have here in Chicago.
As for the bands on the bill. I mean, whoa, this show is gonna be so sick. It's funny all four of our bands know each other pretty well and even party together some times. So, it's gonna be a blast to hang out all night and watch each other rock it. Also, I feel like all four bands have been picking up some steam lately and really put out honestly genuine and good music. It's a quality bill that represents current Chicago rock and roll quite well.
Don’t forget to purchase tickets to Beats & Blogs, featuring White Mystery, Rabble Rabble, Hollows and Radar Eyes, at Ticketweb.com right now, and RSVP for the event on Facebook.