Sam Haar and Zach Steinman are Blondes—an electronic two piece act that create sounds more reminiscent of the beaches of Ibiza than the warehouses of Bushwick. Their blissed out, trance-like releases are helping Blondes fast become known as New York’s authority of ambient dance music.
How did you two meet and decide to form the band? We met at Oberlin College where we were in bands and worked on various types of projects together. Zach was smoking a pipe on the porch and Sam was wearing a fisherman’s hat… we started working on music together after we graduated and the band formed organically.
If the band formed organically, how did you create your sound? We started the band being really inspired by Manuel Gottsching and Gavin Russom. We took these as sort of a starting point, and now have kind of moved away from that. Most of our “sound” comes from jamming in the studio and how we use the machines we have and the restrictions they put on us.
With the current trend of musicians using backing tracks, why did you choose an all live set? Your sets are distinctly more fluid. We don’t really even have the possibility of backing tracks as our music is always produced live, even when we’re recording. What is so great about playing is that we can improvise more and react to what each person is playing, and it allows us to use our songs as points of departure and makes the set more fluid, as you say.
Has anything ever gone wrong live? What has it been? We’ve had some gear break on stage, but we’ve always played it off pretty well… nothing too bad.
You’ve just come back from an international tour… how were the shows and was there a difference in audiences? Europeans audiences are awesome, and obviously they come from a longer history of electronic and club music, so they kind of understand our music in a different way. They consistently have superior sound systems too, which has spoiled us for playing in NYC.
So then what have been the best places you have played? Helsinki, Moscow, Antwerp, Ibiza, Paris, PS1, NYC, and the West Nile.
Blondes have an EP and a few 12″ out, what is coming up next? We have another 12″ and we’re compiling them into an album coming out on RVNG Intl, one of our favorite record labels in the world. It will have remixes by Simian Mobile Disco, Dungeon Acid, SFV Acid, Teengirl Fantasy, Optimo, John Roberts and ahem… Robert Miles.
What would like to do that hasn’t been done yet? Fashion line or lifestyle brand. Maybe soothing and interactive commodity market objects sold at museum design stores and of course FAO Schwarz at Christmas time.
And finally why the name? Man, we just LOVE blonde people.
Let’s talk favorites. Favorite songs and why? Anything that covers or samples this, because it always works.
New artists you love? KiNK, John Roberts, and Jacque Greene.
Best place to party in New York? Tribeca Grand Hotel! They have the best hotel rooms, cocktails, and BRUNCH!
Catch up with Sam Haar and Zach Steinman on their Myspace for tour dates and info on their upcoming LP.