Interview with TRIPOD

October 2003
TriPod

Rarely a new band is exciting and enticing enough to incite an interest and a desire to ask the musicians some questions. Yet, TriPod’s music does raise questions, and the release of the New York’s trio debut album gives a good opportunity to tickle bassist Clint Bahr, reedsman Keith Gurland and percussonist Steve Romano a bit…

- Do you consider TriPod’s work experimental or everything’s planned and accounted for?

Clint: TriPod’s music is a little bit of both elements. We like to keep as many doors open to creativity as possible.

Keith: There is room in all of our songs for improvisation. That is the spirit in which we like to play, to allow for surprise.

Steve: We experiment all the time when we rehearse. As for in the studio, we go in with structured, well-planned songs. We also leave some room for total improvisational jams. Most times the outcome is surprising.

- Where would you place the band on the “rock – fusion” scale?

Keith: Somewhere around the flatted fifth. We’re a rock band.

Clint: TriPod is a rock band that has the capability of going in any direction it chooses.

Steve: We lean toward the rock side!

Clint: We plan a few surprises for future recordings.

- Why does your music sound so nervous?

Clint: Nervous?!

Steve: Nervous! Don’t you mean psychotic?!

Keith: Some people say we’ve got a lot of nerve.

- Was the combination of saxes and heavy riffs inspired by KING CRIMSON?

Keith: Not a huge influence for me.

Clint: No. TriPod’s music is not inspired by CRIMSON, but I must say I have always loved the band in all its incarnations. They’ve always had great players.

Steve: Our inspiration comes from all our collective backgrounds. CRIMSON is just one of a million bands, musicians, poets, writers, artists, etcetera, that influence us.

- Clint, who was your inspiration as a bassist?

Keith: Paul Chambers. [Miles Davis' and John Coltrane's bass player. - DME]

Clint: There are so many that there’s not enough room to name them all… For me, anyone of substance.

- Are vocals important to the music you do? They seem quite auxiliary, supporting the melody…

Steve: Vocals are very important… They enhance the music and at times are the driving melody.

Clint: Yes, vocals are very important to our music, it’s the human connection. They are not “auxillary” in any sense.

Keith: We like to weave voices into the music, so that they share a more or less equal footing with everything else that’s going on – as opposed to having the other instruments take a backseat.

- Is it hard to reproduce your sound live without losing any intensity?

Keith: On the contrary, it’s hard to capture the intensity of our live sound in the studio.

Steve: No, not at all. In fact, the sound is much grander and you can only feel the true intensity of the band at out live shows.

Clint: TriPod is a LIVE band that functions at it’s best on stage.

- Aknowledgments list of the “TriPod” album includes the name of Jonathan Mover. What was the contribution of this renowned drummer?

Steve: Jon is a friend and we choose his studio to record our album.

Keith: He lent us a drum set at one point… Oh, and he provided us with a world-class studio in which to record.

Clint: He co-owns Skyline Studios with our producer/engineer Ron Allaire.

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