Dowsing: “I like a good pop song”

Dowsing: “I like a good pop song”

By Ashwin Bhandari

Sep 23, 2016 13:35

Ahead of their upcoming UK headline tour with Ratboys, we spoke to Dowsing frontman Erik Hunter Czaja about their most recent album, 'Okay', restarting the band virtually from scratch, and his musical influences.

Hey Erik! does it feel to be back on our turf?

Hey, It feels great to be back (again)!

How did your relationship with Ratboys come about?

Will is our Drummer and he plays Bass in Ratboys. We met through Will and other mutual friends!

What records would you take with you on a deserted island and why?

Lots of Robyn, Carly Rae Jepsen, and The Weakerthans – to stay positive and intellectually stimulated.

What kind of real life situations do you take influence from and decide to explore in your music?

I tend to write about whatever is happening around me. Topics range from friends, internal conflicts, weather, geography. I will sometimes be influenced by other art mediums but not too often.

With the internet being a blessing and a curse for bands to make a ‘living’ off of their art these days, how do you balance out touring/recording with your own lives?

Oh gosh. Yes, a terrible blessing and a curse. We tour as much as we can ~4-6 months of the year and work on the road or just when we are home to make a living. We all have our secrets to working and touring. Also, with all the bands we are in we somehow make it work. We have a lot of spreadsheets.

Do you feel like Dowsing is your full-time band and Pet Symmetry is your side project or vice versa?

Dowsing is definitely my full-time project. We play well over a hundred shows a year. Pet Symmetry is a slumbering mammoth that we choose to unleash every so often.

You’ve said in previous interviews how much you enjoy sleeping. What’s the longest time you’ve been on tour without sleep?

Possibly the trip over here this time. I barely slept the night before and didn’t sleep the whole flight and stayed up until about 10pm the day we got here. I surprisingly feel okay.

Given that the concept of ’emo revival’ has been going strong since around 2010 or so, how do you feel about band reunions as a whole?

Some things are sacred. Some things are pretty cool to see again. I go both ways. But if you’re going to make it happen it better be sick.

How did it feel to write ‘Okay’ with different members this time around?

It was a long but fruitful process and felt natural. It was only long because we wanted to re-establish Dowsing and make it a band not just random new people. We could have rushed and recorded these songs but that would have been a mistake. We toured a lot on the second record, got our chops and learned how to play with one another. Ultimately this helped us make the best record we could. Patience was key. It was worth it.

In what direction do you hope to take your music in the future?

We went “harder” on the new LP and I don’t see that stopping, but I do think we will be riffing more and also writing “prettier” songs again. I like a good pop song.

Dowsing kick off their UK tour with Ratboys on September 24th, and you can see a full list of the shows below.

24 LONDON DIY Space for London
25 BRIGHTON Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar
26 BRISTOL Roll for the Soul
27 CORK, IE Crane Lane Theatre
28 GALWAY, IE Róisín Dubh
29 DUBLIN, IE Whelan’s Upstairs
30 BIRMINGHAM Aston Students Union

01 GLASGOW Audio (Strugglefest)
03 LEEDS Brudenell Social Club
04 CARDIFF Clwb Ifor Bach