Despite having never seen Empire Records and insisting on the tight trousers, Josh is a pretty cool dude. I had many questions surrounding his video, beardlessness and naming of the band…so naturally…
Richard Chemaly (RC): Your hair hints of your ability to grow a beard exceptionally quickly. We applaud you for the anti-hipster approach to facial hair and your decision keep it clean. What inspires this?
Josh Kempen (JK): I guess I’m saving the beard for my 3rd, post-hiatus, avant-garde meditation album.
RC: A couple of months ago, I got home after a night of partying, but had to be up early for a job. As I was eating my leftover pizza, there you were on Expresso…singing my hangover away. Firstly, thanks. Secondly, is that recorded live and if so, isn’t it very unrockstar to be up so early?
JK: Expresso was a blast! It’s really thrilling play to such a big potential audience. I’ll take that over sleep any day…and yeah, as much as it was very early for us, the Expresso crew had their Christmas party the night before so they definitely felt it more than we did!
RC: I’ve always been fascinated by singers who have bands but are referred to by their own name. Do you get different session artists for each tour or do you have a solid band with recurring members? Do they have names? Who’s your favourite? Would answering that spark some internal conflict?
JK: I have a solid backing band consisting of Saul Nossel on Drums and Noah Bamburger on keys. Saul would be my favorite breakfast date and Noah would be my favorite dinner date, but I love them both equally.
RC: It’s just gone over half a year since signing with Warner. Incidentally, back in 1995, Warner also distributed the cult classic, Empire Records…so it must be asked, the beach where you filmed “Pistol”…is it the same beach Rex Manning filmed “Say No More”?
JK: I haven’t seen that movie…but I will! And to answer your question; that’s probably the same beach, thank you for noticing!
RC: I know the odds of a Say No More cover will be a tough ask for your Park Acoustics set but for those who haven’t seen you live, what’s to be expected from Josh?
JK: Lots of bobbing up and down to the fast songs, lots of eye’s closed balladeering, I’ll say my name at least 7 times, and I’ll definitely plug my album which you can pre-order right now either on Vinyl or iTunes!
RC: Finally, and most importantly…tight trousers…why do you rockstars love them so much? Do you get a kick out of making us fatties feel guilty for not going to the gym this morning?
JK: Gosh I don’t know why I love them but they feel great. I wish there were more patterns for me to choose from but I’m sure that will come!