Often compared to bands like LCD Soundsystem and The Strokes, Hockey originally captured the hearts (and ears) of fans everywhere with their debut home-made EP, Mind Chaos, in 2009. After making their way through the festival circuit, having songs featured on multiple commercials and television shows, being named as one of Beyond Race magazine’s “50 Emerging Artists” in 2009, and a shift in members, the band is back on the scene with new album, Wyeth.
This summer original vocalist Benjamin Grubin and bassist Jeremy “Jerm” Renyolds are hitting the road on a co-headling tour with The Hush Sound. We recently got a chance to catch up with Jerm about their latest album, the upcoming tour, and what Hockey’s plans are for 2013. Here’s what he had to say!
How did the band Hockey get its start?
Ben and I were roommates in college. The band he was in broke up and we just started playing together. We were originally based out of Portland, Oregon and now we’re based out of New York City. It’s a coming home experience for Ben, being that he is originally from New York City.
Does your band have any affiliation with the sport of hockey?
No, nothing against the sport of hockey though. The name was just the most absurd thing we could think of at the time. That’s what we were about at the time, finding the line and crossing it. That’s our sense of humor.
What has been the fan reaction of Wyeth so far?
It’s a new sound for us. Some of our fans seem a little weirded out but we expected it. It felt the most authentic for us. It might take a couple listens. It came from a deep place. We took a long time to craft it and put it together.
What are your feelings on many people likening you to artists like LCD Soundsystem and The Strokes?
Those bands are great. I also really like Talking Heads. With the newest album we took a lot of inspiration from 80’s hip hop. Our vocal melodies have a reggae influence like Bob Marley or The Police. I think this album is an interesting recreation of the 80’s. More melodic and darker.
What albums are you listening to lately?
My top one is Channel Orange by Frank Ocean.
What is the strangest or weirdest encounter you’ve had with a fan?
We went to Japan for two shows and after every show there was 15-20 girls mobbing us in a really polite and quiet way. It was a tiny mob so the security guards pushing them away from us were really unnecessary.
How do you connect with a crowd?
Get people energized. Give people energy and life. We’re entertainers. It’s our job to create an experience for people. The instruments don’t make us who we are. We want to make something magical from nothing.
You can catch Hockey with The Hush Sound at The Loft on Sunday, May 19! Tickets are available below!