With two albums and numerous EPs under their belts, as well as comparisons to Drab Majesty and Ash Code, the partnership of Bevin Fernandez and Andrew Gomez makes for a band we all can’t get enough of.
Inspired by the uncompromising Kate Bush and pure The Fall, their experimental complexity offers their audience a unique take on the dark wave genre.
Tracks such as “Primer Impacto” toes the line of losing control using brilliant synthetic and instrumental amalgamations without sending their listeners spiraling. While tracks like “Neon Black” offers soothing undulating beats and airy narrative duets.
Read their entire interview below.
1. How do you all get into the creative mindset?
Andrew (A): New & different sounds get me to a creative place, so I’m always sampling, reprocessing, and creating virtual instruments out of found sounds. i just make sure to put in the work regularly. if i wait until i’m feeling it, nothing gets done as there’s just too many distractions. so I always make a point to put in some time as often as I can even if I’m not in the mood. if nothing good comes out after 20 minutes or so, I go do something else. that way, I’m allowing myself plenty of opportunities to catch some butterflies.
2. What made you fall in love with music when you were young?
A: It was my sister & MTV. my sister was always listening to Depeche Mode, INXS, & 80’s & 90’s pop hits, and I got into that stuff through osmosis. she would get absolutely obsessed with whatever artists she was into at the time, and that informed my relationship with music. I still can’t get enough of new songs & new artists, I completely immerse myself in something for a month, and then I move on. it’s funny because most people’s favorite music is whatever they listened to in high school, but my brain doesn’t work like that. I don’t really listen to music nostalgically, as I’ve already drained the blood out of the music I listened to when I was younger.
3. What were some of the musicians and artists that you looked up to while you were growing up?
A: The first two artists I remember discovering and liking myself were Public Enemy & Alice In Chains, and I just took off from there, getting into all sorts of stuff. I had a reggae phase, a funk phase, a Beatles phase, a metal phase, and that was before junior year of high school.
4. When did music transform from something you listen to, from this passive, receptive act, to a platform of creation and action for you?
A: When I was in high school, I had a friend named Anthony who was like, “Let’s start a band! I’ll sing and play guitar.” my brother Alex said he’d play drums, and I said I’ll guess I’ll play bass. Alex and I picked up drums and bass, respectively, and Anthony never followed through. from the beginning, though, I wanted to make something new. I learned songs from artists I liked just to see what made their songs tick, but I was never interested in performing covers. to me, being in a musical project meant writing your own songs, and I don’t know how or why that idea stuck in my head.
5. What has been your favorite country to tour in? Favorite city? What is the first thing you check out when you visit a new city for the first time? Food, bars, museums, art? What city was the weirdest or most unique?
A: It’s not like we have toured all that much, but our tour through Germany & Austria was pretty amazing. they consume music in a really thoughtful way and were just really supportive of music and the arts in general. if you say you’re a musician in the US, everyone says, “no, but really what do you do?” because it’s so hard to make money in the US, & American culture generally doesn’t have respect for the arts or artists unless you’re some sort of rich megastar. in Germany & Austria, the people we ran into felt art is a worthwhile endeavor even if you’re just scraping by.
6. You two are a couple. How do you utilize that intimacy and bring it into your music?
A: I feel like we do the opposite and keep our relationship & work separate. when we’re working on music, we are artists who are collaborating & are communicating on that level. we (& Bevin especially) are rather private people, so it’s unlikely you’re going to hear any autobiographical, tell-all songs from us.
7. Why is a hybrid of dark wave and electro-pop the genre you choose to create in?
A: We didn’t really set out to make this sort of music, it just kind of came out. The art we like is usually a mix of dark & light, so it makes sense that what we do comes out the same way. Generally, a drop of humor in your bleakness is much more interesting than just earnest wallowing in darkness. the same goes when we veer towards the pop side of things. a happy song with dark lyrics is compelling and makes me want to come back to it over & over.
8. How would you recommend other upcoming artists distribute their music to the masses?
A: There’s no one way to do it, and I think it depends on artists’ styles, tastes, & personalities. the music racket is hard, and everyone is promoting themselves constantly. it can be hard to stand out. I will say work on the music itself first. there’s a lot of acts running big PR campaigns when the music isn’t quite there yet, and then they’re bummed and financially depleted when their album didn’t catch fire like they thought it would. even good music gets buried. I feel like we’ll always be making music & videos even if it’s just for ourselves. how it gets out into the world is a different concern, and that landscape is always shifting.
9. I watched your music video for the song “I Am Almost Perfectly Awake.” What do the strings symbolize? And what is the creative process like for making a music video?
A: I feel like it’s best to let the art speak for itself whatever it is. what the strings mean for me might be different than what it means for you, and your interpretation is just as valid as mine. plus, it was the director’s idea, and he didn’t mention what they symbolized. lol as for the creative process, it’s kind of the same as with our music. someone has an idea (in this case, it was our director pal David Dutton), and then we bat it around until it turns into a real thing.
10. Who are you listening to right now?
A: “Devotion” by Distractor & the Get Turnt playlist on Spotify.
See if NRVS LVRS are coming to a city near you here, and stream their entire discography here!
Article and Interview by Jenny Lee.