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2011 Artist Survey: Gardens & Villa

Jan 11, 2012 Gardens & Villa
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For Under the Radar’s 9th annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to 2011. Pick up a copy of Under the Radar’s Best of 2011 Issue for Artist Survey responses from !!!, Acid House Kings, The Antlers, Art Brut, Beirut, Blonde Redhead, Camera Obscura, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., The Dears, Rose Elinor Dougall, The Drums, The Duke Spirit, Elbow, EMA, The Horrors, I Break Horses, Islands, Little Dragon, My Brightest Diamond, Nada Surf, Marissa Nadler, of Montreal, Okkervil River, Peter Bjorn and John, The Rapture, The Rosebuds, SBTRKT, S.C.U.M, and Vivian Girls.

There are even more survey responses in the digital version of the issue and we are also posting more surveys on our website. Here’s a survey from Gardens & Villa.

Chris Lynch, Adam Rasmussen, Shane McKillop, Levi Hayden, and Dustin Ineman

Gardens & Villa

Top 10 Albums of 2011


1. John Maus: We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of OurselvesDreamy. Sentimentally charged. Some songs remind me of pizza and video games in the early ’90s. He has an incredible pop sensibility and it really comes out on this record. Definitely my favorite of the year.
2. Junip: FieldsJosé González can do no wrong. Junip is psychedelic and absurdly groovy. From start to finish it feels live and timeless.
3. Little Dragon: Ritual UnionGreat beats. Insane synth work. Her voice shakes my ribs. Dance-y and/or contemplative depending on your mood.
4. Fleet Foxes: Helplessness BluesMagical.
5. Wolves in the Throne Room: Celestial LineageThis takes you into a world of epic tragedy. Fog and dreams of fjords. Pure black metal from Seattle.
6. Destroyer: KaputtMakes you laugh and cry. Brilliant.
7. Youth Lagoon: The Year of HibernationInnocent and beautiful. Double rainbow.
8. Richard Swift: Walt WolfmanSoulful to the beyond. Sounds like it was recorded in 1975. Swift is a god.
9. The War on Drugs: Slave AmbientWe listened to this record at least 20 times while on tour over the summer. Amazing to drive across America with and it never gets old!
10. Clams Casino: Instrumental MixtapeInnovative and vibe-y. Fits with most relevant gatherings. Just don’t listen to it late while you’re driving: it may put you in a trance. One of G&V’s most listened-to albums of the year.

What was the highlight of 2011 for you and/or your band?

Chris Lynch: It’s hard to say what the highlight of the year was. An amazing one in general for us with our record release and loads of touring the U.S. and Europe. But one exceptionally magical moment for us was our record release night in our hometown, Santa Barbara, CA.

What was the low point of 2011 for you?

Chris: Low point: When our van died in southern Oregon. We were completely stranded off exit 18, Glendale. We had to make it to Portland for a gig that night and (as we have made it an oath to never miss a show) we had to take desperate measures. After hours of despair, we ended up miraculously buying a van with a trailer hitch from a local dude who showed up out of nowhere. We spent all of our money and barely made it to the show only to discover we left the keys to the trailer with our friend Dave, who had stayed with the dead van. After hacksaws and sledgehammers failed, we couldn’t break the lock of the trailer and ended up playing our set with our friends The Generationals’ instruments. The show ended up being pretty fun. The gods were merciful.

What are your hopes and plans for 2012?

Chris: For 2012, we hope/plan to release some new jams we’ve been working on, play as many festivals as we can, and tour ourselves silly. Maybe go on a backpacking trip to the Sierras.

What are your thoughts on the Occupy Wall Street protests? Do you stand with them? Are they accomplishing anything?

Chris: Occupy Wall Street is very interesting. Times are “in-tents.” But I personally (not sure if the whole of G&V agrees) side with the protesters.

Several stages collapsed in 2011. Are you worried about festival safety? What else can be done to make stages and festivals safer?

Chris: I think festivals have always been a little dangerous. Anytime you have that amount of energy and people together. Rock and roll. But I must say that we hung out under a massive stage at the first annual Kanrocksas festival this past summer. Seemed like some good people running things. I’m sure they will take extra precautions.

Has it become less financially viable to survive as an independent band this year?

Chris: This last year was really our first year doing music full-time, without other jobs or places to live. So we can’t really tell you what it was like before. It was always kinda rough and not very lucrative, but definitely worth it. I think you can survive as an independent artist if you give everything else up and make it your life. It’s a big risk but if you think it’s in your blood, there’s only one way to find out.

Which album would you like to see a band play in its entirety?

Chris: Wow, that is a big question. Off the top of my head? Prince performing Purple Rain during the ’80s.

Which song do you wish was being played in the delivery room while you were being born?

Chris: Mark Morrison: “Return of the Mack.”

What’s been the best day of your life so far and what’s been the worst?

Chris: The best day of my life so far was the first time I went to Mexico.

Who has better taste in music, your mom or your dad?

Chris: It’s a hard choice but I would have to say my dad has better taste in music. He got me started on the ’60s with bands like The Kinks, Cream, The Moody Blues, and of course Hendrix, The Stones, and The Beatles, as well as loads of Simon and Garfunkel. But my mom gave me my first synthed-out record called Plantasia (music for plants), so that’s pretty cool.

What’s the smartest decision you’ve ever made in your life?

Chris: Drinking the healing waters of the Mt. Shasta spring. Or maybe learning how to make the best guacamole in the world.

What would be the title of your autobiography?

Chris: Supermarket Samurai.

Which two artists, not including yourself, would you like to see collaborate with each other?

Chris: Richard Swift and Lee Perry.

Who’s the best lyricist in indie rock (besides yourself)?

Chris: Jens Lekman.

If you could guest star on any TV show, which one would it be and why?

Chris: I would want to be a guest judge on Top Chef. Taking big bites. It always looks like such a good time.

If you had to pick only one song to wake to on your clock radio for the rest of your life, which song would you pick?

Chris: Bone Thugs-n-Harmony: “1st of Tha Month.” “Wake up, wake up, wake up/it’s the first of the month.”

If you heard that the world was ending who would be the first person you’d call?

Chris: I’d call my mom. I would ask her to tell me where her secret doomsday hideout is.

Besides your parents, who has been the most influential in your life?

Chris: Probably Harrison Ford, because of the Indiana Jones trilogy (excluding the new one). I watched them hundreds of times as a child. Obsessed.

Is there a record that could define your teenage years?

Chris: The Shape of Punk to Come by Refused.

What’s the biggest lie you’ve ever told?

Chris: Um… I told my cousin that there were “white trucks” driven by evil child snatchers who patrolled the orange groves behind my childhood house with salt guns and nets. Believed it for years and went running every time we saw someone driving a truck back there.

If you could play in any existing band, besides your own, which one would it be and why?

Chris: I’d want to play with Earth, Wind & Fire. They have too much fun playing live. I would just be smiling all the time.

Is America’s political system broken? How can we fix it?

Chris: Yes. The empire is crumbling but I think it will be good for us. Obviously the 20th century’s way of running things isn’t working anymore. We should develop new myths and fashion a new culture that will be more suitable for the 21st century. This could be with or without the government. I definitely think it is an exciting time to be an artist! Even if it is within a broken system.

What is your favorite part about being a working musician? What’s your least favorite?

Chris: Best: Playing live/touring and making records. It’s my dream and my lifeblood. Even though it can make me crazy sometimes. Recording is like pulling something out of the void and giving it life. And performing it live is like watching it evolve. Worst: Not living anywhere and not unpacking my suitcase for over a year. Really missing having my own bed and kitchen. Especially kitchen.

Which song would you like to hear on your deathbed?

Chris: The song “Storm” by Godspeed You! Black Emperor.

In 2011, what was the best movie you saw, book you read, comic book you read, video game you played, and/ore TV show you watched?

Chris: 2011 Bests: Movie: Shogun Assassin. Comic: Batman. TV: The Wire. Video game: Mario Kart 64. Book: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz.

Do you have any other thoughts about the current state of the world or the state of the music industry?

Chris: Learn how to grow your own food. Make stuff and be true to your fellow human.



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March 21st 2015

 El videogame me ha frustrado, si bien constituye cierto que lleve grandes