Welcome to the latest spotlight on one of the 26 bands/artists that will appear on the POST/POP vs Cassette Culture Collaboration Compilation (PXP006). I aim to have one of these interviews every single day so by the time we release the album at the end of March you will know each band initmately! Next up is OURSELVES THE ELVES, all the way from The Philippines! I’m so pleased to have a band on this album representing SE Asia, and the song in question, “I Wouldn’t Mind” sounds like Rilo Kiley before Jenny Lewis got too big for her boots. This is a good thing. Let’s see what they have to say for themselves…
Who are you? Where are you from? Somewhere exotic? Are there any nice record shops there?
We are Ourselves the Elves and we’ve been playing ever since the three of us met in a college dorm where we lived in when we were freshmen. We’re from the Philippines, where it’s sunny all the time, in the big city of Manila. It’s at the center of the country where anything and everything cool happens all the time so yes, there are some pretty nice record shops. You’d have to dig your way through, passing by a lot of lame record shops, to find them though. Although most of the records you’d get are old and beat up, the new ones probably sell for jacked up prices. If anything, the little bars where the little bands like us play are way cooler.
What genre would you pigeonhole yourself into?
Pop. Or pop/folk. POLK!
What are your non-musical influences?
Films, art, cupcakes, beer, Adventure Time, toasted marshmallows, brunch with our closest friends, people’s girlfriends and people’s boyfriends, nature, offensive jokes, our mommies and daddies, KFC
How did you find out about this collaboration/compilation and what made you send me your songs?
Our guitar player was looking for magazines to send our stuff to, and he came across the r/cassetteculture sub.
You are in a dusty room. Time hangs heavy in the air. Before you is an ancient table, carved from a twisted tree that once stood proudly atop a lost mountain. Upon this great table is a gilded envelope. You open the envelope slowly, knowing that it will give you the answer that you have been waiting for ever since you started this journey. You have lost many friends and gained untold enemies along the way. All for this. This moment. You carefully remove the parchment, feeling the edges until it draws blood. You notice not, as your eyes flicker across the page. Your blind companion, so loyal, even though you traded his eyes for safe passage and a mixtape, brings his ear close to your lips and asks you the question. “What did the letter say?” and your answer is……
“You know what, I forgot.”
Do you listen to tapes yourself? Do you think there’s a future for the format?
We used to, but would still be very much interested if ever we get more access to them in this time and age. Most of our record shops here don’t sell tapes anymore, and the artists we know of who record on tapes can be counted on fingers. To be honest, with the hegemony of the digital format, it’s hard to picture a great future for tapes. I mean, even with CDs nowadays, most people have been less kind. BUT with people like you guys who promote the format, as well as music lovers, collectors, and enthusiasts, the cassette tape will never die. As long as there are people who believe, we can always be optimistic. Hopefully, the number of tapes and the number of people who appreciate them will grow.
What’s the one thing people should know about you before they listen to your track?
That this track was recorded independently at our friend’s house. He had the mic, the computer, the audio interface, and the skills to mix and master. Almost all of our songs were done this way.
Also, it’s the last track from our first EP! http://ourselvestheelves.bandcamp.com/album/itll-be-alright-ep
What’s the one thing people should know after they listen to your track?
That we’re not all that. Most people listen to tracks like these and shove it under the labels ‘indie pop’, ‘cutesy’, ‘twee’ but we don’t want people to think that we’re all that. Since we have a whole bunch of other songs that don’t sound like this track, we’re currently working on being bigger than what people think we’re capable of.
Thank You Ourselves The Elves! Read more of the interviews from bands on the forthcoming CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE album below!