Rising band Air Review finds its musical niche
By Ashley Davis
The band currently has a single, “America’s Son,” playing on KXT, a Dallas radio station, and has been getting lots of media attention from organizations such as The Dallas Morning News, and the Denton-Record Chronicle.
The Baylor Lariat talked to Doug Hale, lead singer and frontman for the band, for a closer look at how this band has carved a niche for itself and where it wants to go from here.
Q: How does it feel to see your hard work as a band paid off?
A: It’s been very rewarding. We’re really excited to see that we put ourselves out there and people like what they’re hearing. There’s a lot we still have to say with our music, and our goal is to get as much exposure as we can.
Every band has its rough patches, but we’re very unified in our goals and we all want every show to be the best.
Q: What was inspiration behind this record?
A: There isn’t really any one specific idea for this album. Sonically, we have a lot going on. The music people hear may not be as complicated as other bands’ but we put a lot of energy into the music-making process. Some of the electronic sounds in this album are what we’ve been working on the most.
Q: What has been the hardest part about being a serious band in this area?
A: We started writing in 2008, and we were only looking to put out an EP. It was louder and had a more rock ‘n’ roll sound. We got some recognition for it, but we weren’t really happy with the overall sound of the record. I don’t know if our tastes changed or we all matured in the same way, but we got back together and made a totally different sound.
This album is a lot more laid back and kind of leans towards American folk/alternative music. And we like this one a lot more.
Q: Where do you want to go from here musically?
A: The last songs we wrote were “Animal” and “Rebel,” the first and last track on the album. I think some of the sounds and patterns you see in these songs are where we want to go in the future.
We’ve spent so much time focusing on this album that we haven’t thought a lot about the next one. We’re really more focused on hopefully doing some national tours. We’ve never been out of Texas and we have some dates coming up, but we’re looking forward to exposure on a national level.
Q: What kind of messages do you want to send with your songs?
A: The overarching theme of the album is about growing into adulthood. I guess one of the main ideas is that the faith and love and relationships in our lives are always changing. And as we get older we realize they are a lot more complex than we think. There are also memories from high school and adolescence, so it’s a bit nostalgic as well.
It takes people back to high school and those early relationships that shape our lives. I personally find that I know less and less about life, as I’m getting older.
Q: Can you describe your songwriting and compositional process in your rehearsals?
A: Every song is a little bit different. It usually starts on my laptop and I go to a quiet place to clear my head and think. I like to have it strong before I take it to the band, but as a whole it’s a collaborative effort.
No one person does all the work. For most of the songs we all contribute something that’s important to the final idea.
I’m actually a grump about songwriting. I don’t like this part of the process as much as some people. I love to have written something and have people like it, but the actual process just isn’t fun for me. My bandmates get on me and tease me about it, but it’s something I’ve always had a problem with. I get over it and eventually start to feel the music come more organically, but it’s a struggle at first.
Q: Do you have connections here in Waco that led you to Common Grounds?
No, this gig just came to us through our booking agent, but we are really excited to come to Waco. We’ve heard a lot of good things about the music scene here and we hope that people will like our show.
The band will play along with Caleb, Jillian Edwards Chapman and Lonely Hunter at 6:30 p.m. at Common Grounds, located at 1123 S. Eighth St.
Presale tickets are $7 and can be bought at the venue or online at caleb030213-eorg.eventbrite.com. Day-of-show tickets will be $10 at the door.