It’s never too late to celebrate the glorious spectacle that is CMJ! In dire need of coffee and cigarettes, I hopped off the Bedford L in the early afternoon and encountered Dallas’ THE PHUSS hanging out after a very long drive to their show at Spike Hill. They were cool dudes right off the bat, so I put my addictions on hold for a few minutes and got a bit of info on the Texas trio. Enjoy and check them out!
What’s up everybody? Once again, this is Greg Allis with Live High Five and I am in NYC for CMJ. It’s day 2, and I don’t remember too much from last night, so it must’ve been a really good time. I just got to Bedford Avenue in the heart of Williamsburg… It’s bustling as always, and I’m going to do a Drive-By Interview with Dallas, Texas’ The Phuss.
G- With a “PH!” What’s up guys and thank you for taking the time to speak with Live High Five today. First and foremost, let’s introduce ourselves… Tell us who you are and what you play?
T- I’m Trey Alfaro and I play drums.
J- I’m Josh Fleming and I play guitar and sing.
F- I’m Forrest (Barton) and I play the bass.
G- Right on, and how is CMJ treating you guys so far since you’ve been up here? What’s the good word?
F- We’ve been here for about an hour.
J- Yeah we just drove in from Nashville and got here at 9am, and our show is at 3pm.
G- Oh shit!
Ok, so you’re doing this kinda quick! Well, tell us about what you guys do, what you play, and your style… All that kind of stuff.
J- We’re a hybrid of garage rock and stoner rock, so you’ve got a clanky verse and a really fuzzed out chorus. It’s hard rock, but…
T- It’s got a punk rock influence to it, too.
J- It definitely has some spit. We’re working on a new record right now, which is why we didn’t do a full tour for this. We’re just kinda coming up for some meetings and to play a few shows, and have a good time while we’re here before we head back.
G- Dig it, man. Tell us about the new record coming up, man… What are you working on, where is it getting recorded, and who’s producing? How many tracks can we expect?
J- Right now, we’re working on a 12-track album and we’re about 6 deep in it. We’re working on it at Modern Electric in Dallas with Jeffery Saenz. He’s in tight with The Bronx, and that’s how we met him. He’s a really good dude. We started working in his studio, and it has a really good vibe, and we’ve been writing all the songs in the studio, so they come out really fresh. It’s been really fun! I’m definitely digging it.
G- Cool! And when can we expect that to release?
J- We’re gonna get through this quarter and we’ll probably have an early Spring release.
G- Very cool. And you didn’t drive up all the way from Nashville just for one show, did you?
J- No no… We’re playing 3 shows.
G- Very good, man. Where else are you guys playing?
J- We’re playing here at Spike Hill at 3pm today, and tomorrow we’re playing at Bar Matchless. Friday we’re off for a couple of meetings, and we’re just going to fuck around in the city and get in trouble, and Saturday we play at Club Spin in Manhattan and that’s gonna be a really cool gig. We’re playing with some great bands, so I’m really excited about that one.
G- Cool. So, since we just met and I’ve never heard any of your tunes before, this will be an informative one for me and everybody else, too. Do you guys, collectively or individually, have a favorite song that you’ve ever written or one that is most fun to play live, or if you could only give 1 song to someone who’d never heard of The Phuss before, to make a new fan, what track would you give them and why?
J- I would give them “Stupid Girl.”
T- Definitely “Stupid Girl.” That’s one of my favorites ones just because there’s a lot of fun drum stuff in there.
J- It’s very driving.
T- It’s driving and it sums up the style pretty well.
G- Dig it. How about you, Forrest?
F- I’m with “Something To Die For” on that. It’s just a good track. We all get to shine in it, and it’s good. It gets people dancing and heads shaking, so that’s gotta be my favorite.
G- Alright. Now to finish up today, you guys made a long ass trip up here from Dallas. You’ve got a little tour going on and a new record coming up… You’re living the dream and everyone is on the build.
From your experiences, what advice can you give some of the kids that are trying to do what you’re doing and jump in the van, play some tunes, and play CMJ next year maybe?
F- Just get in the van and go.
J- Book the date and figure it out. That’s what we’ve always done with tours. We just booked this tour and we were like ‘Shit… We need a van!’ So, we bought a van. If you’re worried about money, money is burned and made everyday, and it’s out there, so you’ll find it. Just have fun, try to write good tunes, and go out and play shows.
T- Just do it.
J- Yeah do it. Don’t worry about it. All the bad repercussions will come ay later when you don’t remember why it was bad (laughing.)
G- Right on. Well, this has been a Drive-By interview with The Phuss. I just want to say thank you guys very much for taking the time to speak with Live High Five today. Be safe in your travels, play the shit out of your instruments, and I look forward to the show today!
J- Hell yeah. Thank you!