California rock group, Dredg are back with their new album Chuckles and Mr. Squeezy, which was released last week via Superball Music. The band is currently on the road with The Dear Hunter, Balance and Composure and Trophy Fire in support of their release. That tour will make its way to Highline Ballroom on Thursday, May 19th and The Trocadero on Friday, May 20th (tickets still available for both shows). Guitarist Mark Engles talks about working with producer Dan The Automator on the new album and future touring plans.
1) What's the meaning behind the album's title?
There is no profound meaning behind the title "Chuckles and Mr. Squeezy," although the two characters can represent the two contrasting elements of the record. That being, Chuckles with his huge smile and creepy upbeat attitude, and Mr. Squeezy as the introspective mute savant.
2) What was the inspiration behind this album?
We wouldn't say there is one inspiration for this record, but working with Dan the Automator brought a different approach and mindset.
3) What was the recording/writing process like?
We wrote this record mostly separated by geography. Living in different cities and states encouraged us to write via email and phone conversations. Only a few of the tracks were written with us live in a jam setting.
4) How was it working with Dan The Automator?
Fun, stress-free, and fast. Dan let us let go of our second guessing and over thinking that are normally prevalent. A lot of good food and drinks, too.
5) How did the band wind up choosing him as the producer?
He did a remix for us in a few years ago and Gavin has done a few tours with him since. We've just thrown around the idea of working together since then.
6) How will this record compare to Dredg's previous material?
Chuckles is mainly different in the production realm. Instead of guitars and live drums driving the record, we have more keys and drum heavy beats. The songs are still very much dredg, but with different clothes on.
7) The band is currently on tour with The Dear Hunter. What are you most looking forward to about it?
We really like how the new songs are sounding live, and we're playing some more rare live songs as well. It makes for a very diverse set. We've also added our friend Ben Flanagan to the lineup to add some vocals and guitar. His band, The Trophy Fire, opens the show. Balance and Composure is also on the bill. Good night of the rock music.
8) How did this tour come about?
We had an album coming out and knew we should be on the road to support it.
9) What's next for Dredg after this tour?
We're going to Europe after this U.S. tour and I'm sure we'll be back out on tour through the summer and fall.