Guillermo Sexo – Sun 1/25 – Great Scott

Guillermo Sexo

Guillermo Sexo

Q&A w/ guitarist/vocalist Rueben Bettsak

Q: When and how did Guillermo Sexo form, how did you decide upon your band name, and what changes have been made in the band since it’s inception?

A: Guillermo Sexo formed sometime in 2004. Nationale Blue (my old band) was about to end, and I wanted to form a band with some shorter, psych-ish songs I’d been working on for a while… 

The original members included Nick Gaynier (Appomattox), Jess Barnett, and this guy Alan. We did an EP, and then our first album, “OH Wow, with Dave Nurmi (Appomattox on bass). There’s been a few changes since then…People moving to different cities, or doing other things, etc. 

The name of the band come as a vision. I was dreaming, and David Bowie was dressed in pink pajamas. He whispered, “Guillermo Sexo,” and for some reason we followed his advice. 
The current line-up is: Mark Fede (Drums), Noell Dorsey (Vocals,Keyboards), Jamie Kerry(bass), and me (Reuben, on guitar, vocals). 

Q: In 2008 you released your second album Magic Lanterns which the band has described as “letting loose, more freak out, more variety, more darkness”. As you continue to write songs for album #3 in what new directions do you see your music going?

A: Magic Lanterns was definitely a more expansive record than, “OH Wow.” With Oh Wow, Nick Gaynier, and I really worked hard to make the songs concise, and planned the type of vibe we wanted with the album. 

Magic Lanterns was almost like another band. I started working on the album with a whole new group of musicians. Instead of trying to keep within the framework of the first album, we just learned to play with each other, and let loose during the writing process. 

We are currently working on the 3rd album (about half of it is recorded)…
Most of the new album consists of shorter, upbeat songs…
Mark Fede asked me to make him a copy of like 30 demo songs i’d recorded on my computer, and he told me the ones that he thought we should work on. 

Those “demo,” songs make up half of the album, and the other half consists of songs that Noell wrote vocal lines to…those songs are pretty far out…I’m excited because we are being more selective with the songs that will make the album’s final cut…and it could turn out to be my favorite GS album. 
We are recording with Justin Pizzoferrato again…so, sound-wise, its got the 60’s vibe of Magic Lanterns…

Q: What is the most flattering/sickening musician/band comparisons you have received from fans, friends, family, press etc…?

A: Hmmmm…..band comparisons have included: Sonic Youth, Guided by voices, Pj Harvey, The Rapture, Kinks…I know people have mentioned the drummer of Deerhoof, and other spazzish drummers when talking about Mark. 

Q: On your Myspace page you have listed as your influence, bands such as The 13th Floor Elevators and Love. Have you always been a fan of late 60’s psychedelia? and does that influence inform just the sonic elements of your music or the approach to song writing as well?

A: Bands like 13th Floor Elevators, Love, and the Kinks are definitely very influential to our sound. I don’t try to emulate their songwriting style, but can’t help but want our records to have some of the sound those bands have….I mean, it’s warm, and toasty…..

I have to say that I’ve always liked the idea of taking elements from bands like 13th floor elevators, and meshing them with the noise of Sonic youth, or Liars, and the raw sensuality of a band like Sebadoh….Of course, I’m also obsessed with Guided by voices…

Noell, Jamie, and Mark also share the love of the 60’s bands, but definitely have other influences as well…Noell is an Opera singer, and does experimental shows around town..so, she definitely has an array of influences that find their way into our sound….Mark is obsessed with Deerhoof, and Jamie’s playing reminds me of Joy Division. 

Q: If you could play a show in Boston with 3 other local bands who would they be and at what Boston venue would you play?

A: There are so many good Boston bands so this is a tough one. But, I’ll answer the bands that just popped into my head right now: 

Helms
Neptune
Ketman 
Guillermo Sexo 

At Middle East Up

Listen to Guillermo Sexo


gsposter

Mother/Father
The Living Sea
Whitetail
John Flax

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