AUTHOR’S NOTE: THE ABOVE PICTURE IS JACOB’S DOG NOODLE. EVERYONE LOVES NOODLE.
Perspective, a Lovely Hand to Hold just released their new album “What Not To Do” as well as a remastered version of their 2014 album “Autonomy”. The songs on WNTD are short and sweet- the longest track timing in at 2:35- and are beautifully constructed. My favorite songs on the album are “Telephone”, “Kris”, and “Cashmere”. But really, the entire album is great. They’re that complex emo/alt rock/ chill-yet-chaotic genre that can be so hard to define (at least for me personally), and I absolutely love it.
Earlier this week I did a Skype interview with Jacob and Ben from the band. Here’s what they had to say.
First off, who are you and what genre of music do you make?
Jacob: So I’m Jacob, and I’m 21 years young.
Jacob: That was stupid. And we just make some rock and roll kinda music. You know. Four dudes and some guitars and drums and stuff. Yeah.
Ben: I’m Ben, I’m 20 years old, I don’t know. It’s hard to stick a genre to us, I think. I’d say like.. I don’t know, I feel weird calling ourselves a certain genre.
Jacob: I always like to ask what other people think, you know? But whenever we have to fill out anything, like when you put your music up online you have to pick a genre for yourself-
Ben: I think emo/ math rock.
Jacob: Well usually it’s generic ones so I just go alternative rock.
If you had to describe your music with a color, what would it be?
Ben: Oh man. Pink.
Jacob: I wanna like… Hold on.
Ben: Are you looking up colors?
Jacob: I’m looking up crayon colors. They have cool names for the colors!
Jacob: Here we go.
Ben: My answer is still pink.
Jacob: What about Fuzzy Wuzzy Brown, dude? This is awesome.
Ben: Mine changes to Vivid Tangerine.
Jacob: Or Atomic Tangerine?
Ben: No. Vivid.
Jacob: Hmmm. I’ll know it when I see it. Neon Carrot, that might be it. Electric lime? Mean Green? That might be it, dude. Here, my favorite color is green so lemme find a good green one.
Ben: She didn’t ask you for your favorite color.
Jacob: Okay, okay, so if I had to describe our music using only one color I would put Electric Lime Green.
Ben: And mine’s Vivid Tangerine.
I got that one.
Ben: Okay good.
Vivid tangerine. *Laughs*. So what’s the biggest struggle you have when it comes to creating?
Jacob: Uh, scheduling?
Ben: Yeah. Scheduling.
Jacob: Getting us all in the same room is tough sometimes just because of the way life goes. And I think- I’ve said this to Ben before- when you have even just a general understanding of the way music works, like the rules of music, you always find- I always find myself going “That’s too simple, that’s too easy”. Like, “How can I make this- somebody else already did this, how can I make it a little bit different?”. Or something. You know, when you’re messing around with something, with chord progressions and stuff, it’s like alright. Obviously, every chord progression has already been done, but how can I make this part a little more unique. That’s hard for me. And also writing lyrics. Writing lyrics is always a last minute afterthought. We write all of the music and there’s been times when we were done recording all the music and I had to come back weeks later to record vocals. And on the new album that’s coming out, I wrote all of the vocals like two or three days before-
Ben: I swear sometimes you write the lyrics on the way to the studio to record.
Jacob: Yeah, I’ve definitely done that before. I don’t know, the way we write music… I don’t normally keep that in mind much. I think we both like to know that we can listen to-
Ben: Like it stands alone by itself.
Jacob: Yeah, like if you took the vocals out of it, it would still sound interesting. That it wouldn’t be boring, you know? SO yeah, I guess the music comes first and the lyrics and vocals are kind of like icing on the cake I guess. So that’s hard for us.
Ben: Yes, for you. I don’t have any part in that.
If you could play any show in the world- any bands, any venue- what would it be?
Jacob: So dream show, dude.
Ben: Dream show right?
Jacob: Okay, I’ll pick the venue. You pick the band.
Ben: No no no. Band is harder.
Jacob: Alright, we’ll each pick a band.
Ben: I got the venue!
Jacob: What venue?
Ben: On a yacht.
Jacob: Yacht show?
Ben: Yeah, yacht show.
Jacob: So a yacht show…
Ben: With Slipknot.
Jacob: Slipknot would be on there…
Ben: That’s mostly a joke.
Jacob: But only, not always as a joke. I would definitely play a slow with Slipknot.
Ben: Okay now like a real band.
Jacob: We’ll do four bands! Okay, so us, Slipknot, and then two real bands. Slipknot is influential to us, I think.
Ben: But they would have to open.
Jacob: That’s fine. Is it only active, living bands and stuff?
Nah, it could be Nirvana if you wanted.
Jacob: That makes it harder! How about… Who would you pick?
Ben: I have a lot of bands that I love but I would feel weird playing with. Like it would be a weird line up.
Jacob: We already have a fucked up show, dude.
Ben: I mean, Slipknot…
Jacob: Favorite band. Like a band that you think in a million years that you could never play a show with.
Ben: I think common ground for all four of us would be Death Cab.
Jacob: Yeah, Death Cab. Who do I even listen to dude? Who do I absolutely wanna be…
Ben: I don’t know. But okay, so Slipknot, Death Cab for Cutie, us, one else.
Jacob: Frank Ocean.
Ben: Yeah, Frank Ocean. What a weird line-up.
Jacob: That’d be a great show! Are you kidding me?
I’d go see it.
Jacob: That’d be sick.
I’d get a press pass, man. Go backstage.
Ben: On a yacht.
What would backstage on a yacht even be?
Jacob: In the water dude. Like one of those zoned- out things…
Like the plexiglass things that dip down? Is that what you’re talking about?
That’d be pretty cool.
Ben: Imagine all of us just hanging out in that little area and how weird that would be.
Jacob: Dream show, dude.
Ben: Wait! For it to be a dream show, I would play the trash can in Slipknot.
Ben: They have a trash can player. And that would have to be me.
Jacob: Guest starring.
What do you consider your biggest musical success?
Ben: Probably doing a full tour.
Jacob: Yeah! I think being able to get around the country without having to-
Ben: Drive ourselves deeply in debt.
Jacob: Starve and die. The fact that people care enough to help us get from A to B- like on the other side of the country. And then I think in terms of accomplishments… owning records. To have a physical piece of art from pre-production to post-production. It’s just really cool overall. It’s really gratifying to see a finished product. So we’re excited for that. And just the fact that we can tour. Not that we’re this huge band, but the fact that we can get around is like… It’s a sign of that first step to success or whatever.
What inspired you to start making music?
Ben: Rock band. No, Guitar Hero.
Jacob: My first musical, like, experience or whatever, was when I was ten and I did this thing called The Young Americans. They’re based out in California and they tour around the world and they do like these workshops at schools. So they do all grades, like elementary through high school and stuff. My older sister did it and my mom signed me up to do it with her. That was the first time I heard The Beatles and stuff like that. Then I went home and found CDs and started listening to music and started caring about it. And then I started learning how to play guitar and piano. That’s definitely where it all started for me.
*It is at this point that the video I was recording cut out and I didn’t realize it until about 4 questions later, so we had to go back and re-answer them. That’s why the following answers aren’t as descriptive as the previous ones. Fair warning.*
If you could hear any person living or dead sing to you, who would it be?
Jacob: Okay, so mine were John Lennon or Amy Winehouse and Ben’s was Tiny Tim.
Who, aside from any band or musician, is your biggest influence?
Jacob: Yeah, mine were definitely probably the three from the album art. So when we were figuring out this album- when we write an album, it’s not like we have this huge broad concept- so that album took a long time to write actually, and then we sat on it for a long time. But anyway, when Ben was making album art and doing mockups, I told him I wanted those three people on there. So that was Charlie Chaplin, Edgar Allan Poe, and Walt Disney.
Ben: I was just reinforcing Charlie Chaplin.
What’s your favorite book… Harry Potter (Jacob) and Farewell to Arms (Ben), right?
Alright, I’m better at remembering things than I think. Favorite musical artist?
Ben: My top 3 from the last few years or so… Tokyo Police Club, Saintseneca, and Death Cab For Cutie.
Jacob: I think mine is either The Beatles or Michael Jackson.
What do you like to do other than music?
Ben: Art. Graphic design.
Jacob: I like petting my dog. Being a sweet dad to Noodle. And then I like to watch shows, movies, shit like that.
What’s one piece of advice you have for young musicians?
Jacob: I guess mine would be… don’t… I don’t know, if it’s something that you’re passionate about and you like, try not to sleep on it. Like life happens and stuff, but I had to quit my job last year so we could go on tour. You can figure stuff out. Don’t necessarily be worried. Sometimes it’s better to just do it.
Ben: If it speaks to you, let it.
Jacob: I don’t want to regret not doing it in like 20 years. I don’t want to be like, “I should have gone”. You know what I mean? So if you wanna do something, just do it. Try it.
Ben: Mine is to play as many shows as you can and meet as many people as you can. Because that’s one of my favorite parts of being in a band- the people you meet, the traveling.
Lastly, what’s your lucky number?
Sweet. Do you have any last words for the readers?
Jacob: Uh, menefreghista.
Ben: What is that?
Jacob: Menefreghista is Italian for “One who simply does not give a fuck”.
Ben: That’s good.
Jacob: Menefreghista. You know, words to live by.
You can follow Perspective, a Lovely Hand to Hold on Instagram at @perspectivealovelyhandtohold, and be sure to check “What Not To Do” out now on iTunes and Spotify!