“It Will be Loud”
Get ready. Portland’s Tango Alpha Tango are packing up their big sound and heading north once again for us lucky Seattle folk. We’ve been listening to them nonstop since they made a secret loft space full of people lose their shit for Seattle Secret Shows, but I still don’t know what they sound like exactly. It’s straightforward, but eclectic. It’s straight up rock n roll. No, wait. It’s straight blues. No, they’re like a Zeppelin-y 70s jam band for millennial attention spans. Ok, they’re all of that. And more.
We caught up with singer/guitarist Nathan Trueb ahead of their not-so-secret Tractor Tavern debut December 5th with Seattle Living Room Shows alum, Eternal Fair, and Patrick Foster and the Locomotive, and made him tell you himself.
SLRS: I know describing things is technically my job, but how would you describe your live show to someone who’s never seen you play?
Nathan: A live show by Tango Alpha Tango will usually start off with a big bang. We don’t ease into things necessarily. It will be loud and start to groove from the downbeat.
SLRS: Is this the type of music you’ve always played or did it take a while to find your sound?
Nathan: I have always had a specific sound in mind for my songs, and it’s sometimes hard to pin it down to one genre because the music is as diverse as my influences: everything from old blues to pop, and even jazz and country. But I would say it does take time for a band to find their voice together through the songs and playing live against each other’s personalities. And the longer you’re together you pick up new influences and gain new experience, so the sound naturally evolves with those variables.
SLRS: How long have you been playing together?
Nathan: Tango Alpha Tango has been a band since around 2008. At least that’s when we put out our first EP.
SLRS: What did you grow up listening to and who are your influences now?
Nathan: My family has been one that always had old things, from antiques to thrift store junk, so I’ve always had an appreciation from a young age for the classics, starting with the stuff that originally blew my mind in our record collection: The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Lightning Hopkins, Chet Atkins, and Miles Davis. Even in grade school I had it in my head that the old stuff was always better. I’m always adding to my list of favorites, but you never hear music again like you did when you experienced it for the first time.
SLRS: The Seattle Secret Show was my first time seeing you play. Your performance was amazing and had more energy than I expected. How do you do it?
Nathan: I’m sure there are a lot of factors that give us the ability to do what we do with such high energy, but we don’t want to have one show where we didn’t give it everything we’ve got while we are able. It would seem like a waste – for us and for anyone watching. We want everyone to experience the best possible performance that we can give, including ourselves. Ultimately it’s a respect for our music, the songs, and what we’ve already put into it. With all of that said, in that mind-state it’s fairly easy to accomplish.
SLRS: Last time I saw you play it was in a secret loft in Capitol Hill, but I know you’ve been all over the place. What’s your favorite type of show to play?
Nathan: The best kind of show to play doesn’t have to have many components other than a few to a lot of people who are really into it. Sure, we love to play music by ourselves too – that’s why we spend so much time in the basement where our rehearsal space is – but it’s a different thing altogether when the band and a crowd start feeding each other’s needs- it becomes electric.
SLRS: What’s next for Tango Alpha Tango? Any plans, dreams, or wishes for 2014?
Nathan: We always have lots of plans, with the main goal of progressing, playing more shows to bigger audiences, writing better songs, learning new things about our instruments and each other, and having more fun while we do all of that. We plan on touring more, releasing some new videos, and recording another album or two.
Do yourselves a favor and head to the Tractor December 5. We’ll see you there.
Get your tickets here: http://www.ticketweb.com/t3/sale/SaleEventDetail?dispatch=loadSelectionData&eventId=3856034