Kid Chocolate Interview
Can you introduce yourself?
Thank you! We are Kid Chocolate, a four-piece band from Providence, Rhode Island. My name is Guy Kozak- I play guitar and sing, on the drums is Jamie Wolfond, Andrew Cecin plays bass and Vinnie Neuberg sings, plays keyboard and a little guitar. We are all currently art students at the Rhode Island School of Design.
How did you start together?
Jamie, Vinnie and I started jamming in the fall of 2009 in Jamie’s dorm room at school. At the time we were mostly just playing covers for fun. After a few weeks, we recruited Andrew to play bass with us, and that’s when we started making and playing original music. We started with the intention of being a Surf band, but since none of us were experts on the genre, I think our sound has kind of gone in a different and definitely more unique direction.
Were you in any other bands before forming Kid Chocolate?
I was in a band for several years at home in New Jersey called Dubious Pastry. Jamie had done some drumming with friends but nothing too serious. Vinnie had actually never played in a band before, and Andrew loves reggae and plays bass for a reggae band called Dub Potion when he’s not in school with us.
You just released your first full length album called Gold Star Winner. You were very inspired by 60’s psychedelia as we can hear on the album. I would like if you can present the new album?
Yeah, our new album is called Gold Star Winner and it’s our first full-length release ever! We released an EP last spring, and a single over the summer, but this has been by far been our biggest effort. We started recording last September and we worked on it all the way through March. We recorded and mixed everything ourselves, and all of the instrumental and vocal recordings were done in my dorm room except for the drums, which we recorded in a practice space at our school. Most of the songs were written by Vinnie and I, with the exception of Better on the Coast, which was our first song as a band and one that we all wrote together. As for our songwriting process, when one of us writes a song, that person will usually record a quick demo on garage band that we reference before try playing it all together. At that point, everyone develops their parts and we work together to tweak the arrangement and stuff to make the song as good as we can.
With our album we were pretty inspired by the retro, but high-quality production on the new MGMT album, Congratulations, so we were shooting for a sound like that, but because it was our first time seriously tackling a large-scale mixing/recording project and we didn’t really know what we were doing, the sound kind of took off in its own direction.
Since you love 60’s psych music, I would like if you can share few less known bands that inspired you?
Well they’re definitely not “lesser known” 60’s band, but Vinnie is a huge Beatles fan. And you can definitely hear it in his singing and songwriting. He’s also been listening to a lot of Beach Boys, especially the album Smiley Smile, which has some crazy stuff going on production-wise. Other 60’s bands we’ve been really into are the Kinks and the Zombies, and I’ve been listening nonstop to Brigitte Bardot’s 1964 album, B.B. A lot of our influence also comes from more contemporary bands as well, like Pixies and the Flaming Lips.
What are some future plans for the band? Touring?
We all have our own plans for the summer, so we won’t be able to do much playing. We are thinking about possibly doing some recording towards the end of the summer, which may result in an EP. Though once we get back to school next fall we’re definitely going to try to play as many shows as we can fit into our schedule, and we’ll probably start recording again. We already have at least twenty new demos that we have yet to move forward with.
What is your opinion about psychedelic/hard rock scene these days?
There’s definitely a lot to like, and a lot of bands who are doing some really innovative stuff. We’re huge fans of Animal Collective, and Jamie’s really into the Flaming Lips, and we think MGMT is definitely on to something with their newest album. An issue is that so much of art and music today is all about being “retro” and what seems to happen is that a lot of indie bands that pop up seem to be too focused on getting that style and sound right. It’s definitely a challenge to find a balance between satisfying the desire to sound like older bands that you look up to and making sure that you’re still putting something unique out there. We’ve really tried to make sure that any instances of “retro” production or sounds in our music are backed up by good songwriting.
Do you have anything else to add about the band?
Definitely check us out! We think we’re headed towards something cool.
The he new album is on iTunes. It’s also available to order on:
– Klemen Breznikar