Local Frequency: Bay Area Band Q&A w/ Maus Haus
Like many of San Francisco's best acts, Maus Haus is tough to pin down stylistically. The group's idiosyncratic lyrics are matched with orchestral electronic arrangements reminiscent of Krautrock, Bollywood soundtracks, and Brian Eno's best work.
The group's upcoming release, Sea-Sides, like its debut, is an homage to the analog days of yore. The five tracks are a mellow, sunny, psychedelic ride. Standouts include "Winter," which offers buzzing guitars and howling winds, and "Zig Zag," a frenetic song right out of a '60s spy movie. The record will be available for download and on vinyl April 20th
It takes six band members to make Maus Haus' layered sounds come to life: Joseph Genden, Jason Kick, Joshua Rampage, Aaron Weiss, Sean Mabry, and Tom Hurlbut. Local Frequency sat down with 4/6ths of Maus Haus at Rampage's haus to chat about bowling with Courtney Love, the book that did not want to get read, and which pant leg goes on first.
If you could describe your sound as a San Francisco neighborhood, which one would it be?
Joshua Rampage: I think it would be a combination of things - actually streets. A little bit of Great Highway, a little bit of Precita. I think we're a little bit like a Florida and 21st, somewhere where you shouldn't be walking around by yourself at night.
Jason Kick: I wanted to mention somewhere in Chinatown, but I can't think of any streets.
JR: Yeah, but the northern part, where the tourists don't go.
JK: Well, we're not really a Mission band per se. There's a lot of what we do that is the Mission, but I think we're more of a landmark.
JR: Like Coit Tower, a little bit of Lillie Coit. There's a woman that I work with, she's writing a children's book about her.
JK: Josh will be illustrating it. But yes, we would be Coit Tower, a landmark.
What are you reading right now?
JR: I just got finished reading The Fermata by Nicholson Baker. His prose is one of the most idiosyncratic things I've ever read.
Sean Mabry: I'm reading The Critical Path by R. Buckmister Fuller.
JK: I'm reading one of David Sedaris' books of short stories, Barrel Fever. Someone left it in our bathroom, and I picked it up. I usually go long periods without reading.
Joseph Genden: On our last tour I was reading Solaris by Stanislaw Lem and it got lost somewhere in the van. Then it turned up in a drum bag or somewhere. Then we went to play a show in the East Bay, I put it in a cymbal bag, and I left it in there for three weeks. Now I finally just got it back. It's the book that doesn't want to be read.