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An Interview with Sisters of Your Sunshine Vapor on Echo Fest V

With Echo Fest V coming at us faster than the peak of white rabbit when you've a head full of,...*Vernors*,  we had to send the most rational of journalistic practitioners to get the scoop on the bevy of sounds and sights headed our way. MCB's Jeff Howitt sat with SOYSV's Sean Morrow and talked past, present and future. Dig.

MCB: It's been five years since the first ECHO FEST. Did you think it would be an annual event at the time?
SOYSV: I think initially it was just the idea of trying to have that big party like when you're in High School. To be honest with you, the first year we did it was like let's find some people we can play with locally and try and unite those kind of bands together. The next year rolled around, and we were like let's do that again. It was kind of fun.

MCB: Five years ago was there enough bands in the Detroit Psyche scene or have you always kept the bent of bringing in bands from other towns?
SOYSV: 2010 was the first year and It was all local. Maybe five bands. Six bands the second. First year was Electric Lions. 800 Beloved. FUR. Solar Temple Cult which was at that time the spawn of Friends of Dennis Wilson, and us, the Sisters.

MCB: I've seen where Psyche and Prog music get lumped together into a similar vein. Sisters approached the "drone" with traditional instruments but bands like FUR or 800 Beloved used more programming and sequencers to achieve the repetitive mechanisms that draw the listener along. I like those bands but it does surprise me when similar groups are considered in the Psychedelic realm of music.
SOYSV: Yeah I think as a broad term, Psyche has a stigma of being just this repetitive, sort of non moving, black bar of whatever. When you look back when clinically the words "psych" and "delic" were being applied. "Psyche" of the Mind and "delic".... anything that expands your mind right? To have bands that are using programming or samples may not be traditionally Psychedelic but modernly very much are.

MCB: There definitely was a generation or so of musicians who went straight to keyboards and skipped the guitar...
SOYSV: We actually had a slight argument on Sunday during practice about Dub Step and what is considered music and what is considered programming and what is considered playing an instrument. It's almost like playing in a "band" is passé.

MCB: I know. People will pay ten or fifteen bucks to watch a DJ bob his head... 
SOYSV:And put on a fucking Panda Bear costume!

MCB: But five or seven bucks to see three bands is too much...
SOYSV: Or fucking FREE.

MCB: I do think there is a cyclical thirst for the body in the creation of music.
SOYSV: You're right. I do think there is. Everything comes in waves. Right now, mainstream media or those avenues of music making are just god awful pathetic. The majority people will always be complacent but at some point people just are going to want some fucking Rock 'n' Roll again. Even seven years ago you had the big Garage Rock Revival and that stuff was all over the place. No matter what record shop you went into or driving around you always heard The Hives or whoever.

MCB: It got people playing guitar though.
SOYSV: Yeah, it pushed it to the front. I mean what are you hearing now? What's on that same cycle? I'm not trying to say what you should or shouldn't like but... I don't know what I'm fucking saying! (laughter) All I'm saying is the World needs some more Rock 'n' Roll right now.

MCB: Well look at the longevity of ECHO FEST. It's found new facets each year in it's theme and it's not just Detroit thing. You bring in a lot of of out of town talent and it's become a destination stop for people who have actually stayed on the scene and kept their bands together. The only other band that regionally is doing anything like this is Child Bite.
SOYSV: It's sweet to be able to host all our friends we've made through touring and only get to see once a year or locals that we're only able to play with every other year here in Detroit. It's also really difficult too when you have so many friends that you've played with around the country, and we all know how it works. You want to get a show somewhere else you trade shows with somebody. So when it comes to the end of the day and you've done a two, three week tour and eventually you have to book a show for nine out of town bands or whatever and you're like "Fuck. We're not going to play nine times in Detroit!", in separate locations and times of the year. Let's just do this one show and pay everybody back the favor by bringing us all together.

MCB: On that tip, what is the farthest out a band is coming to town for ECHO FEST?
SOYSV: Montreal. Elephant Stone.

MCB: Has there been anyone further than that?
SOYSV: Last year was mostly Ohio. Fort Wayne, Indiana. Mostly in a two to three hour radius. Milwaukee was probably the furthest last year. 

MCB: Any surprises this year to look forward to?
SOYSV: Buffalo Coven Party. We saw them play with our buds in Heaven's Gateway Drugs. Elephant Stone has toured with The Black Angels. Definitely pumped up to see them. Rogue Satellites. Another hard working Detroit band.

MCB: When do the Sisters get back on the road?
SOYSV: We probably have another two months of work on the record. Mix. Master. We found a small label in Spain that's going to put it out for us. So actually the plan is to go right to Europe like March, April for like two, three weeks. Touring the U.S. you get a sense of what works and what doesn't work. New York City can be hit or miss but you go to Fort Wayne or Rochester and a hundred people show up. You go to Cincinnati and there are a hundred and fifty people there. Those are the places I want to play. So like playing London isn't going to make any sense. We want to go to like Croatia or Berlin.

MCB: How many years has it been since Spectra Spirit?
SOYSV: Almost exactly three years. Spectra Spirit came out on 11/11/11.

MCB: How much new material have you been playing live?
SOYSV: Almost all of it. We did a New York tour in October. An Ohio stint at the end of September where we've pretty much been playing all of the new 

MCB: Well cool. We'll catch up with you. 

Every Echo Fest V attendee will receive a free pair of diffraction glasses which separates light into huge rainbow star bursts to transform the already trippy light show orchestrated by Wayne Woodward into the the most intense visual experience of your life.

Echo Fest | Nov 15th | Loving Touch | 6pm
Don't forget to RSVP to the events page to receive discounted tickets at the door