Futurebirds is no stranger to Macon and for that, we’re extremely thankful. We’re convinced that Futurebirds are on the cusp of another big step. A large part of that theory is based on the pending release of their next record, Hotel Parties (Preview the first track “twentyseven” here). Thomas Johnson of Futurebirds was kind enough to sit down with us to discuss signing with a prominent indie label (Fat Possum records), their new record, how things have changed over the years, and of course, what we can expect from them at their TWO performances at this year’s Bragg Jam.
Futurebirds is playing as an acoustic duo (featuring Thomas and Carter) on the 11th Hour Stage at Just Tap’d from 10 to 11 pm AND as a full band on the Cox stage at the Cox Capitol Theatre from 12:15-1:30 am.
Not trying to pry (too much), but how has the life for you (and the band) changed between 2008 (when the band was formed) and now?
Ha, that’s a tough question. In some ways it’s changed quite a bit, in other ways it’s not that much different at all. We’ve all grown up a lot, or at least we like to think we have, but we’re still in the thick of the struggle, you know.
Are you as excited as the rest of us about your next release? Any hints on what we can expect?
I’m probably more excited than y’all are, we’ve been working on this thing for 2 years, haha. We also feel that this is our strongest and most focused effort to date, so we can’t wait to get it out into the world and see what happens. As far as what to expect… It’s our tightest group of songs. It’s a very moody record to me.
You guys are playing an acoustic set at Just Tap’d at 10 pm. As someone who has seen your “full-on” rock show, what can we expect from this performance? Any exciting new arrangements?
Yeah it’ll just be Carter and I at that. It was supposed to note that on the schedule but I’m not sure if that happened. Regardless, it’ll just be us with 2 acoustics, possibly an electric or a banjo depending on what the set up looks like. We’re gonna do a mix of some songs we really like and some of our own tracks.
***I realize what follows is a stupid question, but I’d love to hear/see your response. Feel free to skip it all together if you like*** The Futurebirds signed with Fat Possum records a few years ago. Did that feel like a “we finally made it” moment? Did you go out and buy a Trans Am?
Ha, in a lot of ways it did, for sure, but it was a fleeting moment. It’s really hard to have a successful record, for everyone involved. As great of a label as they are, I’m not sure we ever truly saw eye-to-eye on what was going on and where the band saw ourselves. Not for lack of trying though, we loved working with them.
Your Facebook status states that big things are coming. Any chance you can elaborate on that?
Well by this time we’ve already debuted our first track “twentyseven” off of our new record “Hotel Parties” that comes out 9/25 on Easy Sound Recording Co. ha. But yeah the new record is coming out, you can preorder and check out the tour dates herehttp://www.futurebirdsmusic.com. The track is debuting at: http://www.stereogum.com/1818193/futurebirds-twentyseven-stereogum-premiere/mp3s/
Since you guys are playing TWO sets at this year’s Bragg Jam, I doubt y’all will have much time to wander and check out any other bands. In the unlikely event that you do have some free time during Bragg Jam, are there any acts that you’re planning to see?
There are so many great bands playing, I hope we do get to check some out. T Hardy Morris, New Madrid, SUSTO, Lera Lynn, Moon Taxi, Natural Child, Family and Friends. Too many to see, but I’m gonna try to get to as many as I can.