Interview: The Aces talk Lorde, Australia, and their new EP I Don't Like Being Honest
The Utah four-piece's debut EP is out now via Red Bull Records.
On their debut EP I Don't Like Being Honest, The Aces are dangerous, powerful and ironically, honest. The Utah four-piece are constantly compared to names including HAIM and The 1975, a comparison un-far-fetched with their care-free and accessible indie-rock sound, a sound which is laced with a certain confidence and groove that make these comparisons so easy to make. Their four-track debut, out now on Red Bull Records, perfectly demonstrates this, with stand-out singles including Stuck and Touch combining the slick, blazing guitar work of indie rock's most impressive with commanding, yet easily-approachable vocals which musicians such as HAIM have harnessed to fight their way to the top. In celebration of the EP, we chatted to the crew, made up of sisters Cristal and Alisa Ramirez, guitarist Katie Henderson and bassist McKenna Patty, about the creation and release of the EP, the inspiration they draw from artists like Lorde and HAIM, and their Australian tour plans - check it out below with the full EP stream, which we suggest be played at full volume for that extra kick that only The Aces can provide.
So first of all, congrats on the release of the debut EP! The four of you have been a group for a while now, especially considering that you’re all quite young. Was there a reason why you all decided to finally go down the EP route or was it just the next logical step?
Thank you so much! The biggest reason why we decided to do an EP is because we wanted to give the world an introduction to us as a band and our sound and also give our fans a taste of what to expect on the album.
The album touches on some fairly personal points, especially in singles like Stuck which seems to reflect on toxic relationships in the past. Do all the tracks on the EP comes from similar moments and emotions? What are some of the stories and emotions that formed the EP?
The EP and a most of our music comes from our experiences as young adults - learning about life, love, and everything in between. Stuck is inspired by the feeling of being stuck in a situation that you know isn’t right but don’t know how to get out of, whether it is a relationship or a roadblock in life. Physical is about the importance and desire for substance in a relationship, while Baby Who is about not needing anyone or anything to make you happy. Being young is intense and the emotions and experiences we write about are very real to us.
It’s mentioned that Cristal and Alisa were brought up on artists like Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston and that Katie and McKenna were more into the alternative side of things. Did your early exposure to music in your upbringing and the artists you used to listen to influence the EP?
Yes, definitely. Cristal and Alisa’s upbringing on classic Pop music inspires much of our lyrics and melodies. Katie and McKenna’s upbringing on classic rock and alternative music inspired a lot of the instrumentation and guitar lines/tones you hear on the EP.
The indie-rock scene is quite a male-dominated field, but the rise of musicians such as HAIM and Lorde have influenced a new wave of artists like yourself. Does looking at artists like HAIM heavily influence and inspire you as a group? What’s the importance of having artists like Lorde becoming GRAMMY-winning chart toppers?
For sure. We love both of those artists so much and love seeing women have success in music. Ironically, the night we finally decided to pursue the band as a career was the night Lorde won her GRAMMY. We had already been a band for about 7 years but college and other pursuits were on the horizon so we didn’t know if we were going to keep going. We were so inspired to see a girl our age have so much success. We all realized that night that we wanted to pursue music and have been going nonstop ever since. Since the music industry is so male-dominated, it is important for female musicians to support, uplift, and inspire each other. We are so excited to see more female musicians make their debut and we hope to be able to be an inspiration like so many female artists have been to us.
The debut EP is now done and dusted, so besides touring, the next logical step would an album, right? Have you guys started mapping out ideas for the record or whatever your next step is?
Yes! We are so excited to show everyone the album we have been working hard on for the past couple of years. Since we started out as a live band, we also cannot wait to hit the road and play some shows. It is our favourite part of doing music for sure.
Is there anything you’ve learnt in the making and release of I Don’t Like Being Honest, being so relatively new to the scene? Has writing and making the EP changed the way you write and make music in the future?
We have learned a lot during this process. I think we have been surprised at the reaction to some of our songs. As a musician, you tend to create biases to certain songs because of the experiences and emotions you have around them. A song that isn’t necessarily your favourite could really resonate with a listener, so that has been a cool thing to see. While making and releasing the EP, I think we have really continued to discover the sound of The Aces and our vision and goals for the future.
And finally, the question I think everyone’s wondering – when can we expect your arrival down in Australia?
As soon as we can! It has always been our dream to go to Australia!
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