Love District is reminiscent of The Cure, The Smiths, and New Order, mixed with high energy and built on a Rock and Roll foundation. The band consists of four members from San Jose, CA who fell in love with post-punk and new wave but also wanted to create a truly unique sound. This incredible combination immerses listeners in an unforgettable experience that can’t be found anywhere else.
After releasing their debut EP “Control,”and their album “Delusions,”Love District is looking to reestablish their sound with their upcoming releases. The group has played the Ernie Ball stage at Vans Warped Tour, worked with CocaCola, and has played many festivals and venues while becoming a staple in the Bay Area music scene. Their newest single is titled “Feels Like Home” and it’s out now!
What’s a musical guilty pleasure of yours?
Alex Nguyen: I don’t know if it’s a guilty pleasure, but I will always love Blink-182.
Chris Pounders: I agree Alex, “Enema of the State” is an all time classic for me. BUT I’m going to have to go with Metro Station. When that album came out, I was hooked and a little embarrassed to admit it.
What are some sources of inspiration for you?
Chris: Hearing music from other artists is very inspiring. Hearing stories about people doing incredible things in their life also really inspires me. Walking outside, and just the feeling of adventure and freedom, I think we all need a dose of that every so often. It helps with feeling connected to the real things in life, which are things I like to sing about.
Alex: Live music is a big thing for me! Whenever I discover a band, I always look up a video of them playing live. Playing different instruments and musicians also takes you out of your comfort zone and forces you to get better as a musician.
Who is an artist that you look up to more than others today?
Alex: I’d say Dave Grohl because he’s had different bands and albums in his career that were very successful, but still keeps trying to progress his sound and try new things. Also being a multi-instrumentalist, he was one of the first guys that I saw that could play a lot of instruments and do it well.
Chris: Radiohead really impresses me. I love their approach and their philosophy to their career. I’m a fan of Radiohead, but I don’t consider them my favorite band, just a band I really like. The reason I look up to them is because you really get that sense of artistic freedom from them. Which is something a lot of bands lose when they become successful.
Favorite activity to blow off some steam?
Chris: Video games! I grew up with a Sega Genesis and have never really quit gaming since. It’s one of my passions outside of music. My dad was a game developer when I was a kid, so naturally I fell in love with the whole gaming industry. It’s definitely how I like to unwind when I’m not writing music.
Alex: I’m a big sports guy! Anything basketball, football, MMA, skateboarding, baseball, hockey, etc. I am down. It is the art of performing at the highest level and their regiment and dedication is inspiring no matter what field you are in. I’m also a gamer when I can.
Tell us about your latest release and how it came about
Chris: Our latest track was mainly inspired by “how soon is now” by the Smiths. I wanted a song that had that solid beat and groove while the acoustic guitar floats along with big electric guitars soaring over all of it. It’s a reflective song, about how we can get carried away in life and get lost in the busyness. About how we can be in such a crowded city and still feel alone, all the while calling it home. I’m happy we recorded this one and got it out there for people to listen to!
What are some things you do to deal with anxiety and creative blocks?
Chris: Anxiety – Deep slow breaths, and just reminding myself it’s all in my head, and that I’m okay. They say the more anxious you are, the more awareness you have? So I try not to see it as a bad thing, but more of a heightened sense that needs managing. Creative blocks are tough, and to get out of them I like to use song writing exercise tricks. One I like to use is finding a true story that speaks to me. Sometimes its a suicide note someone left behind, or a crazy romance turned into a crime of passion. I take those stories and tell them. This takes a lot of pressure off the writer to produce great storytelling. We forget we don’t have to think of everything; just look around you, things are happening. Sing about them.
What’s the future looking like for you?
Chris: We like to hope things will always go in the direction they are meant to go. We hope to travel and tour more, and put out more and more music, but only time will tell!
What inspires your visuals, videos, looks etc?
Chris: The retro new wave/post punk ‘80s look. We love the 8mm video look, and just the overall sad eighties goth vibe. We love what The Cure did with the feeling you get with their videos and songs. We like wild hair, and fun clothing.
What is the most embarrassing memory and most proud moment of your career so far?
Chris: Anytime I forget lyrics it’s embarrassing! Happens more than I’d like–I suppose I need to practice more, or write simpler lyrics! Being in a band is one of the hardest things you can do as a musician. I am very proud of this band’s accomplishments so far. One thing to note about Love District is that our first record “Control” was released by an indie record Label, Tallest Man Records. We don’t work with them anymore, we are on our own now. But we were really proud of that partnership. It’s one of our accomplishments.
What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
Chris: “Take care of yourself.” So simple, but it’s bigger than we think when you really think about it. Are we really taking care of ourselves? As I was saying goodbye to my grandpa on his dying bed, he whispered this to me as his last words to me. And it struck me–it felt like four words with the weight of the Titanic.
Where do you think the music and entertainment industry is headed after this past year?
Chris: Definitely into the unknown! But one thing is for sure, the music industry will see a live music boom. Concerts and live music have always been important for people, and when you take that away for over a year–nearly two years–people are eager to get back out. I think we are also going to see more of a demand for live cover bands. Instead of a DJ playing your favorite song, why not a live band that’s crushing? Music is here to stay, even if it’s on a hiatus right now.