Houston Music

Inquiring Minds: Buxton

Rocks Off has yet to deal with a diva artist, a privilege we take neither for granted nor lightly. But talking to the locals in Buxton, we can't help but think even if these boys reach the pinnacle of success, they still won't become prima donnas. No, they will always remain the nice boys from the inner Loop (via La Porte). Rocks Off recently spoke with Buxton's Chris Wise (bass, background vocals, keyboards) about Saturday's release show of new singles "Flint" and "Feathers."

Rocks Off: How have your member changes affected the writing?

Buxton: Previously, when we wrote as an acoustic three-piece, the songwriting process pretty much entailed Sergio [Trevino, vocals, guitar, piano] having a song and Jason [Willis, lead guitar, miscellaneous instruments] and I writing parts to it. With Justin [Terrell, drums] in the mix, I think we've all definitely grown as musicians, and now we're actually able [to] create music together as opposed to waiting on someone else to make it happen.

"Flint" and "Feathers" are both songs where we really just jammed something very small and turned into something much bigger. Now it's a mixture of building from Sergio's work and the work that we do from scratch as a band.

RO: As far as song construction goes, what path was chosen for this 7-inch compared to the past?

B: There wasn't necessarily a chosen path; it just sort of happened. We wanted to write new music with Justin, and so we really just sort of jammed out these two riffs we had going. A lot of times we really struggle on whether or not to keep the simple structure of verse-chorus-verse-chorus, but sometimes it's about what is better for the song, especially in the case of "Flint." "Feathers," however... I really don't know how that structure made sense at the time. But we're glad it turned out the way it did. We probably stole it from [Coldplay's] Viva la Vida.

RO: [2008 LP] A Family Light received a lot of good press - how do you believe "Flint" and "Feathers" will fare?

B: I hope people like it. I don't think it demands as much attention as a full-length, since it's only two songs. But I hope it at the very least interest's people in what we're going to do next. We experimented with song structure, and with horns on this record, and we'll want to continue growing in that way of going out of our comfort zone.

As for whether or not people like it, if they do that's great, if not then I hope we can interest them with our next record.

RO: What made you choose vinyl for this recording?

B: This was our first time to record to tape, and our first time at Sugar Hill Studios. The quality was something that really excited us, so with that in mind, putting out a 7-inch record was much more appealing than just throwing it away with an online release or even worse, a two-song CD. We didn't necessarily feel like building a full length around "Flint" and "Feathers" and thought they worked well enough together to put it on wax.

RO: Will the "Doctor" remix be featured on the new LP? It's such a different take on your usually indie-folk-sounding music - what made you decide to remix that song?

Buxton: Haha, well that was a surprise to us from the guys in News on the March. We were recording the Summer Exposure compilation and Joe Weber had jokingly referenced putting Auto-tune on everything as a joke when you hear your first mix. After all was said and done we were hearing these rumors about them doing a remix. We had no idea how elaborate, and awesome it would turn out.

Hopefully, we'd be able to do something like that again. It would probably never end up being on a full-length, but who knows? Sergio and I are big fans of [Kanye West's] 808's and Heartbreak album.

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Kim Douglass
Contact: Kim Douglass