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Who is in Surface Wound?

L to R: Sandy, Tommy, Steve

L to R: Sandy, Tommy, Steve

Guitar and vocals: Steve
Bass and vocals: Sandy (Too Much Joy, The Gramercy Arms)
Drums and vocals: Tommy (Too Much Joy, Sweet as Ether, The Lucky Bastards)

Is this the same line-up as the band that released the self-titled Surface Wound EP in 2005?

No, that line-up was Sandy, Tommy and a gentleman named SKiP, a gregarious vegetarian who resided in Sandy’s attic for a while and provided childcare.  He used to be in the Wynona Riders, and has recently been standing in for Jello Biafra for some “Dead Kennedys” gigs.  He left Surface Wound (and Sandy’s attic) on amicable terms and remains a friend.

Steve was discovered on Craigslist, like all good things in life.  Tommy and Sandy first played with Steve and another singer/guitarist with whom we remain friendly, Anthony Nelson, who then moved to L.A. for a while, so we became a trio again.  Steve lives in upstate New York and works for the state cracking down on welfare fraud.  And musical fraud.

What’s behind the band name?

Deep Wound (J. Mascis and Lou Barlow's first band)

Deep Wound (J. Mascis and Lou Barlow's first band)

Sandy:  In addition to being surprisingly Google-able, “Surface Wound” is part retort/part tribute to ‘Deep Wound,’ the name of J Mascis and Lou Barlow’s band prior to Dinosaur.  Cause, why does everything have to be so tragic?

What is your new album called and when is it coming out?

“The Kids Are All Gone.”  It will be released this year on Acquired Taste Music in both digital and physical form.

What are the names of the songs on this album?

1. Nature Girl

2. Secret Friend

3. What Are You Waiting For?

4. Headache

5. Pretty French

6. Left Behind

7. Sungazer

8. Singing The Same Song

9. Blowed Up

10. My Name Is Mud

11. Hey! You!

12. Nobody’s Diary

Anyone else of note perform on the album?

Why, yes!

“Secret Friend” and “Left Behind” feature vocals by Kendall Meade a/k/a Mascott.

Kendall of Mascott with her killer mutt

Kendall of Mascott with her killer mutt

“Pretty French” features Gary Henderson on trumpet and Thomas Comerford on trombone, both formerly of Edna’s Goldfish, a very cool ska band.

The Horn Section

The Horn Section

“Blowed Up” features rapping by L.E.D. of Eclypse.

“Nobody’s Diary” features The General (Three Years Later) on vocals.

Where and when was it recorded?

It was recorded in frenetic bursts from March through July of 2009 at General Studios in Douglaston, Queens, New York.  Really yummy Italian take-out, and homemade brownies by Steve’s wife, Sarah.  Oh, and the studio sounds great too.

Who produced it?

General George Fullan In The Kitchen

General George Fullan In The Kitchen

Surface Wound and “General” George Fullan.

Who mastered it?

Randy Merrill at Masterdisk.

What instruments were used to perform these songs?

Bass, guitar, drums, voice, a couple of horns and a stylophone.  And a few home-brewed effects pedals.

What the fuck is a stylophone?

According to Wikipedia, it’s “a miniature stylus-operated synthesizer invented in 1967 by Brian Jarvis.”  It sounds like a poor man’s theramin.  In fact, here’s a contest.  If you can pick out the song Steve plays it on, you win a prize: we’ll give you the stylophone.  Just kidding, Steve.

The Motha'uckin Stylophone

The Motha'uckin Stylophone


Who wrote these songs?

They were all written by us (Hamilton, Smallens, Vinton).  Although “Nobody’s Diary” is a cover of a Yazoo song (written by Alison Moyet).  And the rapped verses in “Blowed Up” were written by L.E.D.

Why a Yazoo cover?

It’s a great song we didn’t have to transpose to perform.  And it gives Steve the opportunity to demonstrate some of his more obscure homemade pedals.  Not to mention The General’s stirring chorus vocals at the end.

When were these songs written?

Some are as old as 10 years, some are as new as a few months ago.

What is your songwriting process?

Each member offers up riffs, melodies and ideas.  If they do not work in a live, collaborative setting, or played alone on an acoustic guitar, we move on to the next one.

Will you be touring?

Not to get all Bill Clinton on you, but it depends upon how you define “tour.”  Yes, we’ll play these songs live, and may even do so a few nights in a row.  There will probably be no long-term ‘getting in the van,’ although most of our family members would probably welcome the reprieve.

Who took your photos?

Sandy’s sister, Meredith Smallens Lonner, the Diane Arbus of Scarsdale, NY.

Don’t you have anything better to do with your time?

Actually, no.

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