School Drugs - Sound In The Signals Interview

I recently had the opportunity to interview School Drugs. We discussed an early introduction to music, musical influences, the band’s live performance, songwriting, the meaning behind “Dead Vine”, when to expect new music, and more. Check it out below. 

First, thanks for the interview.

Yo, no problem. Thanks for taking the time to talk.

Can you tell me how you formed the band for those who may be unfamiliar? How did you initially become interested in music?

School Drugs started around 2016 when our bass played Edgar had suggested the two of us start a band. Originally we were going to go for a sort of Butthole Surfers noise thing, but ultimately sounded something closer to the world of hardcore/punk.

I got into the scene around 14 years old after hounding my cousin to bring me to a show. Both of my older cousins had been going to local shows for years before that. When I was around 8 a few members of my family went to go see his band play at a local club. The joke here being, I started going to shows when I was 8, but took a break for 6 years. 

Who are some of your biggest influences?

Both of those cousins, Brian and Andy, had the biggest influence on me growing up. I always did, and still do, look up to them as older brothers. Their outlook on hardcore and punk shaped the foundation of what I would later mold into my own view on underground music as a whole. At some point in time one of them lent me Descendents- Enjoy!, NoFX- Punk in Drublic, and Operation Ivy- Energy. A year or so after that Andy made me two separate mix CDs of Misfits and Descendents. As I got older I found myself gravitating towards bands similar to that. TSOL, Nerve Agents, Poison Idea, Gorilla Biscuits, etc… 

I recently watched your show Hate5Six recorded. How do you think that video turned out? Is that pretty indicative of what your shows are usually like?

That video was great, we were all beyond stoked that Sunny came out to the shore. I believe that video is fairly representative of what we do. 

Dead Vine” is a favorite song of mine. Can you tell me about writing that song specifically? 

The main riff that starts that song was the first thing I had thought of, along with the phrase, ‘paint the roses red, they’re still fucking dead’. That initial line was inspired by a conversation I had with my partner about something fairly unrelated to the subject matter.

‘Dead Vine’ deals with the futility and inevitability of death. Regardless of how nice you dress a corpse, no matter how much you spend on the funeral, you’re not in control of how you’ll feel and approach the situation. To me it’s more terrifying to realize you’ll live your life without that person, than the fact that you’ll have no choice but to join them. 

How do you usually write songs? Do you start with lyrics or music first?

It varies from song to song. Sometimes I’ll have a line that I really like, and attempt to work it into an existing song progression, or I’ll have a riff and figure out what words fit around it. Generally I attempt to fit words in “perfectly”, meaning the cadence and rhythm fits square inside the structure. That could end with changing the words entirely from what I started with, or changing the way the chords are played, depending which works best. 

Can we expect new music this year? If so, what can you tell us about it so far? 

‘Funeral Arrangements’ pt. 2 will be out this year, with pt. 3 to follow not far behind it in 2023. 

I think the overall concept will come into focus with the release of this next 7”. The best way to describe it would be similar to a trilogy of films. You can watch Star Wars Episode Four and go “Oh yeah, it’s one film, beginning middle and end.” but when you add in Empire and Jedi, you get that they’re all connected and run a theme.

Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions. Do you have anything else that you would like to add?

Call someone you love, and tell them that you do. 

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