For the past few weeks, the song that has put me in a great mood while walking to the bus in the morning has been “June Avenue” by The Tins. Hailing from Buffalo, New York, The Tins is made up of three friends: Adam Putzer (guitar, vocals), Dave Muntner (drums) and Mike Santillo (keyboards, vocals). The trio has been playing together for years, but has yet to release a full-length album. Their debut EP has been getting pretty good reviews and their seven-minute track, “The Green Room,” has already been called “epic” and British music magazine NME has qualified it as being “extraordinarily moving.” Their lyrical and musical melodies are both captivating and in harmony with one another. In fact, whether it is a seven-minute track or a shorter one like “Subtle Rattle,” the band sure knows how to keep its public fascinated until the last note. The Tins’ sound can be qualified as indie with a twist of soft, emotional rock. Overall, they are a great discovery that will keep you moving until the end of the day. I recently had the pleasure of asking The Tins some questions:
Q: I really like your music video for “The Green Room.” If you could be God for one day, what would you do?
Dave: If I was the big G, I would obviously spy on everyone and then start an intergalactic war between humans and alien moth people for my own amusement.
Q: Back to the music video, it was filmed in the U.K. and you’ve been getting pretty good reviews from British magazines like NME – has the English music scene inspired you?
Adam: Definitely. The Beatles have been my favorite group since I was born, basically, and they opened up that whole world of music to me. The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, the punk scene, all that stuff has been a huge influence on me in particular and to the band in general. Much of the harmonies that Mike and I do and our melodic ideas stem from that.
Q: On your EP, you have short songs such as “Subtle Rattle” [two minutes] and long ones like “The Green Room” [seven minutes], is the challenge the same whether composing a short or long song?
Adam: They both present their own challenges, but I guess shorter is harder, at least to me. With a song like “The Green Room,” we kind of allowed ourselves to indulge our impulses and go all out, which is a bit easier than editing yourself down, sacrificing ideas that you may like, but that don’t serve the song well. “Subtle Rattle,” probably lost half its length during the writing stages, and that to me is harder to do than keeping a whole seven-minute idea intact.
Dave: We generally create the mood/vibe of a song and its structure before we come up with the vocals. It may not be easier than lyric writing, but it comes more naturally to us.
Q: The idea of movement seems to be a recurring subject in your lyrics – what keeps you moving forward? Is there any specific song that motivates you?
Mike: Well, things are constantly changing for the band, but they are usually subtle and it is difficult to find meaning in our movement as a band. I mean that the changes, both tied to the band and in our private lives, do not clearly amount to anything. Not being able to trace the progress of movement can fuel anxiety, but also brings a kind of excitement that is associated with the unknowable. I am kept moving forward by a drive to arrive at that point that results in a feeling of accomplishment. This is probably a never-ending task, like this parable I read where travelers continue to half the distance between the starting point and their destination. They will get closer to their destination, but it is mathematically impossible for them to actually reach the end point toward which they are moving. New music of all kinds motivates me toward this end. I look forward to hearing new things being done with music, new combinations of melodies and sounds that change my own ideas about music.
Q: What is the one thing people should know about The Tins?
Dave: What you should know about The Tins … The Tins are very funny, charismatic and charming.
For all the latest news on The Tins: http://www.myspace.com/thetinsmusic