HomeInterviewsHappy Mondays Interview Series: Powerlines Electrifies Listeners with Pulsing Pop Rock

Happy Mondays Interview Series: Powerlines Electrifies Listeners with Pulsing Pop Rock

   Press photo provided by Powerlines band, taken by Joel Todero

The music of Powerlines transmits a thrilling electrical energy to listeners that will leave them feeling revitalized and inspired. Hard-hitting guitar riffs and solos are fused together with hauntingly beautiful vocals and instrumental breakdowns that transfix the audience.

Powerlines is Deanna DiLandro on vocals, Tyler Anderson on guitar, Nick Winship on bass, and Mike Berko on drums. Together they create “pop rock with a pulse,” as DiLandro says.

Classic rock roots are tangible to the listener’s ears, and their EP Inertia offers a wide range of sounds to explore, from the sultry and evocative track “River” to the slightly more mellow and introspective song “Supermoon.” “Used To” ends on an upbeat, hopeful note and the listener will feel empowered by the lyrics that speak of finding one’s independence and moving on from a relationship. The EP as a whole will have listeners thinking about our tendency to resist change, and encourage us to go after our ambitions.

I had the opportunity to interview Powerlines in light of their show tonight at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park. Read on to discover the origin of Powerlines, musical inspirations, and exciting details about their EP Inertia and upcoming music.

Where is home base for Powerlines? Our band united in New Brunswick, NJ three years ago and we still consider New Jersey our home base! We all live in different parts of the state.

Where are some of your favorite places to perform? I’d say some of our favorite places to perform have been Maxwell’s in Hoboken before it closed (we actually played the very last show there!), Bowery Electric, Scarlet Pub and The Donegal Saloon. We also have a soft spot for the New Brunswick DIY music scene since we were very active in it during our time in the city and have had so much fun playing basement shows. Also, we recently had the opportunity to open for a Bruce Springsteen cover band at Union County Performing Arts Center which was quite epic for us.

What encouraged you to choose Powerlines as your band name? How does it fit with who you are as a band? A few years ago we were writing songs in an apartment where our bassist at the time lived. The girl he lived with had a big bookshelf and we were talking about the books; all of them were heavily geared towards her conservative views. Basically, we were talking sh*t about them because they looked like they had never been read and were simply there to announce her political views to anyone who entered her space. There was a book called “Power lines” and I said that the word would make a good band name. It kinda just stuck after that and is completely unrelated to being a conservative. However, I think the name embodies our music well because we have an electrifying musical presence.


It only took one time seeing you guys live for me to feel the power behind your music. I love the harder rock vibes combined with Deanna’s vocals. It’s such a unique and impactful combination that keeps listeners on their toes in the best possible way. What sounds or elements do you think are most recognizable to listeners in your music? I think the heavy rock style we have as a unit is most recognizable to listeners. Tyler’s guitar tone for his riffs and solos are classic yet impressionable. We also have a lot of fun while we play live and I think any crowd loves to see that!

What are the themes, feelings, and ideas that are explored in the lyrics of your songs? And more generally, what acts as inspiration for your music? Like most songwriters, the lyrics I write come from my direct experiences and feelings. A song like “Used To” was written after I ended a relationship with someone I realized I didn’t need to keep going back to in order to feel loved. “Supermoon” is basically about my awareness of my place in the universe, which is a tiny blip on an infinite map. It’s also about surrendering to that idea. “River” isn’t about a river at all, it’s about sex.

As for inspiration, I’d say the band draws from different artists and styles. Collectively, we’ve all been very into Vulfpeck and think we’re headed towards funkier territory because of it. However, we are also incredibly inspired by classic rockers and all of the legends that came before us; the people that made the sounds we love first. We’re always just using our inspirations as a spring board to try new things and develop our own sound.

Press photo provided by Powerlines band, taken by Joel Todero

Thinking back on the writing and recording process of Inertia, what are you most proud of when it comes to your EP? I think we were all just really ecstatic that these songs were finally tangible and complete structures. We were so happy that we finally had something to show for ourselves as a project. The songs we had been playing for two years were finally realized in a real life studio recording. Nuts. We also recorded them in New Brunswick, the city where we all met, in a little studio called AGL Sounds.

I always find myself coming back to “Supermoon” and listening to it on repeat. From the very catchy guitar riff that you hear right from the start, to the build ups and breakdowns, Deanna’s sparkling vocals, and lyrics that just feel so relatable and hopeful, this song just really sticks with me. What was the inspiration behind this song and what does it mean to you? First of all, thank you for your kind words! This song was written while I was taking an astronomy class at Rutgers, actually. I have always had an interest in aspects of the universe that I never fully understood and also needed to fulfill a science requirement.

One day before I had to go to class, Tyler came to meet me outside my apartment and we sat outside in the grass writing. I accidentally didn’t bring the notebook that I usual write lyrics in outside and opened up my astronomy notebook. When he started playing the riff, I was looking down at my notes about the moon and its cycles. It kind of just hit me all at once. It also happened to be the night before a super moon and I was excited about it. I’ve always loved the moon so much, I think it’s an incredibly special rock.

This song was a huge release for me, especially writing the bridge. “Just let it set you free, all of this wandering, open your eyes, just realize that you’re alive” – singing (screaming) this part is like being suspended. I feel nothing and everything all at once. I also have always loved looking at the sky, in all of its greatness, and sharing that with others.

As “inertia” makes an appearance in the lyrics of “Supermoon,” it makes me think that the EP revolves (or orbits) around this song. Is this accurate at all? How does this song reflect what the EP is about? Objects tend to resist their state of motion. People tend to resist change. Sometimes we find it hard to push ourselves. After two years of playing these songs, we released them. We overcame our own Inertia and made a little EP!

I was captivated during your performance when I saw you at Pino’s over a year ago—it’s clear how much you all love playing music and I could just feel your energy. Although that was awhile ago, I still remember it so clearly. With all this in mind, what is it like up on stage during your shows? How are you feeling during your performances and what are some of your favorite parts about performing live? It’s thrilling. It’s one of the best parts about playing music. Being able to share our enthusiasm and creative energy with an audience is always awesome. Like, the audience could be anywhere else but they decided to come listen to us and that shit is crazy. We all let loose and jump around together. It’s just so much fun. Sharing our songs with others is so, so special.


Is there any particular song of yours that you are really connecting to lately? If so, what song is it and what makes it so relatable right now? We recently wrote a song called “Water” and it’s about the how hypnotized everyone is by their phones. They are basically just destroying us all but every day we just drink it up, like water.

What can you tell us about upcoming music or performances—what’s in store for Powerlines for the rest of the year? We are actually headed back into the studio this month to record two new songs! We’ll be playing some shows soon- September 7th @ Spanish Pavillion for a “Kill the Keg Party” (AKA it will be v hype plz come out), & September 29th @ Gold Sounds (Brooklyn)- and that’s all so far! Follow us on the web to stay updated!!! We have content!!

Catch Powerlines tonight at Wonder Bar in Asbury Park at 8pm where they will be playing with We’re Ghosts Now and Twelve Times Kevin.


Laura Curry
Laura Curry
Laura Curry is a Rutgers University graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. Interviewing bands and writing about music is her passion. She is a frequent concert-goer, whether they’re happening in New Brunswick basements, Asbury Park venues, concert halls in NYC and anywhere in between. Alternative rock is her go-to genre (i.e. Kings of Leon, Cage the Elephant, Foals, The Maine and lots more). When she isn’t writing for The Pop Break, she works at the North Brunswick Public Library, which offers plenty of Fantasy/Adventure novels to quench her love of reading. Additionally, she takes on creative projects from dream catchers and scrapbooks to paintings and jewelry making. She’s always happy to talk about her furry Maine Coon cat Austen and his knack for playing fetch and hide and seek. Just try not to ask about her next career move, because trust me, she’s working on it.

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