31 August 2006 -
Interview: the Prids
Chuck Norton, DeadJournalist.com
by British post-punk bands like Wire and the Smiths, the Prids have never
pretended to something they aren't. They aren't a punk band, because "punk"
is just a marketing term. And punk bands have becoming little more than
fodder for reality TV shows.
But if this were
the late-1970's or early-1980's, when punk met respect, the Prids would
be punk. Respect comes hard-earned. The blood, guts, stubbornness, passion
for creating music and refusal to do it someone else's way garners respect.
The Prids have respect.
David Frederickson (vocals, guitar) and Mistina Keith (bass, vocals) met
at a show Frederickson was playing in Missouri in the mid-1990's. Keith,
who had no musical training, convinced Frederickson to leave his current
band and start one with her. The duo formed the Prids and crisscrossed
the mid-west for several years playing shows, writing music and doing
their best to stay out of trouble. But the two musicians wanted more than
the dustbowl could offer.
So Frederickson and
Keith, neither of whom completed high school, got married and moved to
Portland in the late-1990's.The move proved to be exactly what they needed,
as the strength of the area's music scene allowed the band to blossom
The Prids released
their first LP, the highly-regarded Love Zero, in 2003. Three years
later - with the addition of Eric Hold (keyboards) and Joey Maas (drums)
- they released their second full-length album É Until the World is
Beautiful in July 2006.
Although there were
line-up changes to the band, the heart and soul of the Prids remains Frederickson
and Keith. Now divorced, the two still share a home on the outskirts of
Portland where much of their music is crafted. Regardless of their personal
status, they will always be married to their music.
The band is currently
in the midst of a non-stop summer/fall tour of North America in support
of their album. Beginning with their September 16th show in Chicago, the
band with play 18 dates with Built to Spill.
For more information
on the Prids, visit their Web site: www.theprids.com
or their MySpace.com page: www.myspace.com/theprids.
Mistina Keith of
the Prids took time out of her hectic tour schedule for this exclusive
interview with DeadJournalist.com
From a music standpoint,
how much did the band change from the Prids debut Love Zero to
the new album É Until the World is Beautiful?
MK: The biggest difference
between Love Zero and ...Until the World is Beautiful is
we put less an emphasis on the keyboards and really let the guitars do
most of the talking. We had a couple line-up changes between the albums
- ones that we didn't foresee - so now instead of having a keyboard sound
be an integral part of the melody we use it as more of a layer or an embellishment.
We also made a point of lengthening our verses lyrically.
How long did it
take to record É Until the World is Beautiful? Who did you work
with to produce the album?
MK: It took 12, 13-hour
days at a studio called Super Natural Sound in Oregon. We recorded it
in December of 2005 with our friend Hillary Johnson from NYC. This was
the first time we ever let anyone else hold the reins so to speak. But
it gave us the chance to let us do nothing but focus on our performances.
It was the middle of Portland's rainy season and the studio is surrounded
by a large forest, it was a neat experience.
Was it important
to capture the essence of your live performance on the album?
MK: Yes, exactly.
That was the intention of bringing Hillary in. She has a pair of amazing
ears that we trust, and all we had to do was our thing. The band is in
the midst of an extended North American tour.
What is the biggest
challenge of playing show almost nightly for months in a row?
MK: This tour is
three months and 62 performances. After parties ... just kidding. The
biggest challenge is probably pain. We tend to move when we play, which
can do all sorts of numbers on the body. Not to mention, David who is
normally fit as a fiddle, has been plagued this tour.
First he went swimming,
got water in his right ear and couldn't hear out of it for over a week.
Then we were invited back to this warehouse that had a half pipe, so of
course David gets on a skateboard, falls and sprains his wrist really
We haven't missed
any shows though!
What is your favorite
part of performing live?
MK: The energy of
connecting together musically with other people. For the Prids, that means
not only with members of the band, but the spectators as well. We feel
really fortunate to be able to project this thing that is us and have
it be received, and when they love it everything just seems to make sense.
We're very lucky.
in Portland, you and David bounced around the mid-west for several years.
What made everything come together for the band in Portland?
MK: We set out to
come to the west coast and become a working, touring band anyway. It helped
that after our third show we got a full page glowing write up in the Portland
Portland has a very
supportive, active scene that is inspiring as well. We're just doing exactly
what we'd set out to do, it could have been in Nebraska or Missouri. We
just wanted a larger scene.
With your personal
and professional lives intertwined, is it difficult to maintain a distinction
between the two?
MK: It's not difficult
because we're not trying to maintain any sort of distinction. When we're
not working on music we're usually hanging out, going out dancing together.
We basically do everything together anyway. Personal, business, whatever.
What are you most
proud of accomplishing thus far with the Prids?
MK: Earning the respect
of artists we admire.
Once you complete
your current tour, what are you plans? Will
the band be working on their next album?
MK: David and I are
planning on putting out a covers record this winter/spring. We'll be writing
songs for the new album as well, we're definitely not waiting three years
for the next release.
to 1996, what were you listening to that summer?
MK: 1996 wasn't that
different than 2006 ... Halo Benders, Built to Spill, Sonic Youth, Frank
Black, The Smiths, Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine, Bauhaus,
Jonathan Richman, Daniel Johnston, Unrest, Stereolab, and Dinosaur Jr.