I’ve written about bands in the New Jersey scene for the better part of the last 15 years. Some have been amazing, some (to be nice) not so much.
Then there’s a band that catches you completely off guard. One that makes you stop dead in your tracks, and says, “Wait a second…now that’s really good.”
At the moment, that band is The Burns. I had their track “Wolves” on in the background as I did various things on the site, and about 30 seconds in I was halted in my tracks. The band was absolutely killing it — the blend of mid-90s alternative/pop stylings mixed with the trimmings of 70s guitar-driven classic rock was perfect. It was everything my soul needed at the moment, and I was completely hooked.
In short — The Burns are pretty awesome. So, I’m happy to present this interview I did with them as they get set to perform at Happy Mondays at Wonder Bar tonight.
The Burns Are (Band Members & Instruments They Play): Joey Henderson – Guitar/Vocals, Matt Fernicola – Lead Guitar/Vocals, Billy McCabe – Drums, Chris Dubrow – Bass/Vocals.
We Formed In: May-ish 2017, but also kind-of in January that year… but for the record: May, 2017
We’re Based Out of: Eaton-Port, which is a combination of Eatontown and Oceanport. Fern is from Howell or something like that.
Story Behind Our Name: DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING TOO HOT
Our Sound Has Been Likened To: If the ’90s and classic rock had a kid, then that kid fell in love with a punk rock chick in high school and they had a kid. Wait, what was the question again?
Cool/Famous Bands We’ve Shared the Stage With: We had the pleasure of closing out for Alien Ant Farm, Dishwalla, Marcy Playground, Gin Blossoms, and Fuel at The Stone Pony last summer. Needless to say our inner 90’s child was beaming.
You’ve been a band for over a year — how do you feel you’ve evolved musically, and from a live performance perspective since your debut?
It’s been a year already? Holy cow, time flies. Weekly rehearsals and rigorous gigging has definitely helped us tighten up our chops. It’s like trying to become the best baker in the cake shop: over time you figure out the tastiest set of ingredients to make the gat-dam best cake you can make.
What’s been your favorite moment(s) of your first year as a band?
This answer would most indubitably vary depending on who you ask in the band, however I’m going to lay on the cheese: The best moment(s) since our beginnings would be every time we play and see our friends, fam, and fans rocking out with us. Seriously we couldn’t be where we are without them and we can’t thank them enough for consistently watching us be jabroni’s with loud instruments. Also there was that time we auctioned off Fern on stage at The pony, that was fun.
If someone wants to check you out for the first time — what song would you recommend people listen to to fully understand what you are as a band, and why?
I’d recommend first listening to Stranger off of our first full length, Splenderson. It has a lot of the elements of our sound; dynamics, rockin’ guitars, Chris yelling, and Billiam smashing on the drums. Also our latest single, Hard On You, which has a little more polished and composed feel, hinting at a tone of things to come! (The tunes are all on Spotify, Bandcamp, and iTunes).
Is there new music on the horizon?
Always – we’ve spent the winter in a fury of writing and are hitting the studio in April to record a fresh EP… LP? No… its an EP… well actually maybe an LP? We haven’t decided yet in case you couldn’t tell.
What do you love about being in this band?
How much fun we have all the time, it’s almost impossible to not have a good time when we’re all in the same room. When we’re not in the same room, there’s always the group chat! (Billy quietly shakes his head).
What are you most excited for in 2018?
GIGS, RECORDING, GIGS, VIDEOS, GIGS, RECORDING, GIGS, and MORE GIGS … and also Chris preordered a fancy new fender bass that doesn’t come out until the end of the year, so thats pretty exciting!