SXSW is a place where many musicians get their start, and while there are tons of promising acts that attended the fest this year, none of them stood out quite like LIILY. The band is the perfect mix of rock and alternative and even though they are quite young, they performed as if they had been rocking the stage for a decade. Between their many amazing showcases, I got the chance to sit down with the band and talk about things like future hopes, changes in sound, and much more.
GMAT: Welcome to Austin, how are you enjoying SXSW so far?
Maxx: We like it, it’s a lot of fun.
GMAT: Well I’m glad to hear that! So, y’all just released a new EP I Can Fool Anybody In This Town, and I wanted to know how the process of writing an EP differs from writing singles?
Charlie: Well, we’ve had a lot of these songs before we were ever a signed band or taking it completely seriously, so the thought process wasn’t necessarily “let’s write an EP”, it was more of us playing shows and we needed songs to play. The songs that we had, we recorded, so that was pretty much the process for it.
Dylan: Also, the way we write we don’t really write for singles or EP’s, we just write music.
GMAT: So, this EP is definitely on the harder side of alternative, and I was wondering if there was a band that inspired y’all to do this type of music or if it just came naturally?
Sam: I think there are a few bands that we all agree are really cool but, for the most part all of us individually listen to different stuff so all the influences come from different sources.
GMAT: Something that I think is so impressive about LIILY is how young you guys are, so I just wanted to know if there are any hardships that come with being a young band in the industry and if so what advice would you give to other young people to get around those obstacles?
Charlie: For me I would say, take as much time as you possibly need to figure out what you’re trying to say, and what your sound is. I mean we don’t really know at this point yet, which is fine but I think it’s the most important thing. It’s like everyone says, you have your whole life to write your first album then the second one comes about a lot faster.
GMAT: So speaking of impressive things, the growth of LIILY these past couple of months have been enormous, so how does it feel to know you can go across the U.S. and know you have fans practically everywhere?
Maxx: I don’t know if that’s necessarily true, we went to places like Davenport, Iowa and I think before we played our set nobody knew who we were but, after our set everyone was really nice and I like going to different parts of the country and gaining fans but we’re still pretty new in all of this.
GMAT: Well like you said, y’all are super new in all of this so there is tons of time for growth! So, something that definitely launched y’all into the public’s eye was the ‘Toro’ music video, which I thought was amazing. It was very chaotic and very fun to watch so, what was the process of recording that like?
Sam: The whole concept of the music video is kind of making fun of live performance music videos because we think they’re really cheesy and corny. It was kind of us being cheesy while making fun of it. It just came together, we had another idea but it was too expensive so we did this instead.
Charlie: The process of making it though, it was just a really long day and it was at a warehouse in downtown LA and it was 95 degrees.
Maxx: I made Charlie bleed.
Charlie: Yeah, Maxx made me bleed.
GMAT: Worth it! So, I know y’all are playing a few festivals this year, SXSW included, but do y’all have a dream fest to play? It can be anywhere in the world.
Charlie: We’re just happy to play wherever. We’re not really festival goers because it’s not really our scene but, we’re just down to play wherever. None in particular but is there any fest you guys want to play at?
Dylan: I want to come back here but, for the most part because we live in LA and the stuff that’s close is Coachella and Flog Gnaw. Everything is just a bit of a scene, it’s kind of surprising too because of how competitive and talented a lot of people are in LA and even then there’s still a lot of people that go to festivals not to listen to music and, it’s kind of why there’s no attraction to music festivals for us but this has been great. SXSW is really about the artists and about people finding out about new people and debuting.
GMAT: So, kind of a fun one. If you had to switch up any of your songs and play it only acoustically, which one would it be?
Maxx: None of them!
Charlie: We get the offers for the acoustic shows and we just can’t do it. We did one and it just doesn’t work.
GMAT: Makes sense! So, obviously this is only the start for LIILY so if you had to pitch your band in one sentence to the people here at SXSW, what’s the one sentence you would use?
Sam: If you like it, we like you and come to more.
Maxx: If you don’t like it, there’s a lot of other bands that are playing at this festival.
GMAT: Great! Last question because I know you guys are busy but, if you have any insight into the future of LIILY like future albums or future anything that you would like to tell the readers of Give Me A Try Magazine, what would you say?
Maxx: If you like it now you might not like it in the future. It’s going to be pretty different.
GMAT: Different? Like changing sounds?
Sam: Yes. It’s not going to sound like the EP. We’re trying to evolve as a band and as people and as artists. We’re going to be making true art that we think is awesome and really cool.
Charlie: I can say that the music LIILY will be making in two years will be very different than the music that we’re making now. Not in an excluding way, it’s just what it’s going to be.
Maxx: I think if there’s a good connotation to someone saying “that came out of left field” that’s what we’re going for.
GMAT: Well I can’t wait to see that! Thank you so much for chatting and good luck tonight at your shows!
With the promise of a future sound that is yet to be identified and a current sound that had everyone in the crowd moving, I think it’s safe to say LIILY has an unbelievably bright future ahead of them. This band is definitely one you want to catch in their early stages so make sure you buy their newest EP I Can Fool Anybody In This Town.