Bummer Hill - Sound In The Signals Interview

I recently had the opportunity to interview Bummer Hill. We discussed the recording process for their EP ‘City Limit’, lyrical inspiration, a favorite moment from the EP, hiding meaningful secrets in artwork and titles, the potential for new music, and more. Check it out below. 

First, thanks for the interview.

My pleasure, thanks for having me!

You released your EP ‘City Limit’ in 2022. Have you been pleased with the response it has received so far?

Definitely. We're still a very young band having only started playing shows together this year so City Limit is our first real project as a group. We're super stoked that people have been responding positively to it and latching on to our sound.

What was the experience like recording it? Where did you record it at and how long did you work on it?

It was a DIY process for sure, I recorded and produced the whole project in my bedroom over the course of about 4 months. "(Without) Your Love" came first, we released it as a single back in May and the rest of the songs just kind of formed around it. We tracked guitars, bass and vocals in the bedroom studio and did the drums in our bassist Dawson's parents' basement (shoutout Chris and Carrie).

I really like “(Without) Your Love”. Can you tell me about writing that song specifically?

Appreciate it! It's one of our favorites too. I wrote the song when I was reminiscing about this time I was in between relationships and wanting to put myself out there again. I wanted to strike a contrast between the song being very bright and summery sonically and sort of melancholy lyrically; it's all about the feeling of being infatuated with someone combined with the fear that you'll fuck it up. It's supposed to be kind of misleading because the pre-chorus is very lovey-dovey sounding but the chorus is like an explosion of frustration.

Do you have a favorite lyrical or musical moment from the EP? Why? 

For me, it's a set of lyrics in "Isn't It Strange? (I'm Doing Better)". The whole EP is a project about coming to a turning point in life and the desire to experience change, and this moment in the song is quintessentially that. The words are "Try to think, make the best of the situation, enjoy it while it lasts, thank the constellations, think of all the times you were alone. Make a change, do something for yourself for once and breathe a little deeper than your chest can muster, accept the fact you're feeling how you do." and the instrumental is building to this big release that emulates that feeling of allowing yourself to move on from something or be vulnerable after a long time of being closed off. It was a therapeutic one to write; really felt like I'd gotten something off my chest.

The artwork for the EP is great. Who came up with the concept for it and designed it?

The artwork was designed by our bassist, Dawson. He does pretty much all our graphics and visual stuff with his photoshop wizardry. Since "Bummer Hill" is this like, fictitious city we invented we figured the themes of the EP would bring us to the edge of town, so to speak. I remember me and Dawson were driving back to my place after we'd gone to look at some merch designs and his car was just in front of mine when he suddenly just pulled over on the side of the highway, so I did the same a couple hundred feet ahead of him to see what was wrong. He'd seen this big road sign that was overgrown with all these plants and thought it looked cool, so he took a couple photos of it and we eventually photoshopped it to be the "City Limit" sign for Bummer Hill. I wanted to fill the sign itself with a bunch of easter eggs, like the bottom corner says "population: 444" which is a reference to the angel number which essentially means "You're on the right track", but the last two "4's" had weathered away to represent the fact that we're a 4-piece and hence the only occupants of the city. It was fun to put together, I'm a big fan of hiding meaningful secrets in artwork and titles for keen-eyed listeners.

Do you have any plans for more new music in 2023?

Big time. We're currently in the writing process for a batch of songs that we hope will be our first studio full-length. No real time table on releases or anything yet, but there will definitely be new Bummer Hill music in 2023.

Is there any chance that you plan to release vinyl or cassettes for the EP? How important is physical media to your band?

We love physical media, especially vinyl. I've dabbled with the idea of doing cassettes for City Limit, that may be happening sooner rather than later. We just really want to do them right and be sure we're making a quality product. Pressing vinyl of our music is big dream of ours so we'd love to do that down the line when we have more demand for it.

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

Any time! Our twitter account is based you should hit that up Bummerhillatl. The Instagram is fine too that's just Bummerhill. <3

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