-Interview- Hail Alien (8/29/18)

Hail Alien talks about the current Punk scene, Michigan music scene and much more.


From: Detroit, MI
Sounds like: Basement Punk

Answered by Spence (S) and Mini (M).

1. How did you get started with music and how did you develop your sound?

S: Um, we learned how to play.
M: We played in a basement together.
S: Yeah we basically learned how to play our instruments with each other.
M: Developed our sound by listening to the same music together while playing exclusively with each other.
S: Yeah, we had an exclusive relationship very early on. [laughs]
M: [Laughs] Literally, no one else.

2. Who thought of the name “Hail Alien” and is there any meaning behind it?

S: How did we think of the name Hail Alien? The internet. [both laugh]
S: I did an online band name generator and it was one of the first ones to come up, we went through a bunch more that had been generated but we went back to it pretty much right away.
M: Yeah.
S: Is there any meaning behind the name... it rhymed and kind of sounded... oh, it was really annoying to say.
M: We both like aliens and it's annoying to say.
S: [Laughs] It's really annoying to say. [both laugh]

3. What do you want people to take away from your music?

M: ...Bruises. [both laugh]

4. How would you describe your sound to the average listener?

M: We’ve called it ‘Basement Punk’ from the beginning…
S: Yeah, I’ve always had a hard time describing it, I’ll ask friends who come to shows what they would call us… My favorite response has been ‘loud.’ [laughs]
M: Raw and loud. [laughs]
S: A band we played with once gave us the tagline of “Hail Alien: Hooks and Fury”, which made us feel pretty cool.

5. Who are three bands you’d like to tour with?

S: Ooo like now or like any time period? It'd be cool right now to do a tour with Royal Blood 'cuz they're another two-piece.
M: Yeah, Royal Blood... umm...
S: Greta Van Fleet just because they're from Michigan and famous. [laughs]
M: Noooo...
S: [laughing] Yeah, no.
M; Royal Blood, Blink 182 just 'cuz.
S: Just 'cuz.
M: Any Metal band, honestly. Like The Fall Of Troy... The Word Alive would be pretty cool just because they're a heavier band.

6. What are your three desert island albums that you'd never get tired of listening to?

M: Fall of Troy Doppelgänger, Blink-182 'Bhudda', and then... Royal Blood [both laugh] whatever that last one is, 'Out of the Black' or something like that.
S: Yeah, can you tell we've been listening to them lately?
M: Yea, right.
S: I'd say The Menzingers' 'On The Impossible Past' for sure, and then maybe... August Burns Red's 'Messengers' and [Green Day's] 'Dookie', I grew up on that s***... it's the first CD I remember reading the insert of while listening to it.

7. What’s your take on the current state of Punk?

M: It sucks.
S: It lost its edge.
M: It f****** sucks.
S: It slipped into more of like a fashion thing in two-thousand-and-f*****-whenever-'American Idiot'-came-out and went down from there.
M: Yeah I would say it's all Pop-punk now which isn't Punk.
S: Pop-punk is all too, it's all too, uh... bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, which is against the whole point of it... It can be fun but it's not the point. It's okay to define yourself by more than the fact that you like pizza [laughs] Be upset about things, it's okay.

8. What’s the current music scene like there in Michigan both locally and statewide?

M: Techno. [LAUGHS]
S: Yeah if it's not techno no one really cares, big bands or, like, big acts come through the big venues... Locally, I mean it's fun, like, we make sure we have fun when we're on a show with touring bands but a lot of times the current state can be frustrating.
M: Oh, what's the current state? Uh, well-
S: Denial. [laughs]
M: One of my favorite bands lead singer just died, so. [laughs]
S: ...So, yeah.

9. What’s your take on legal/illegal music downloading?

S: I think all music should be free, it's progression of the music industry and its pointless to get hung up on it. You gotta figure out how to make money somewhere else.
M: I think music should be free but I like the idea of donating to bands that you care about.
S: Right.
M: I like the support of local music but I think it's dumb that you're kind of forced to pay for the bigger-name artists.
S: Music is progressing and people are trying to like hold onto an older idea of the industry... people are gonna figure out a way to get the music, trust me. If I like your s*** --
M: -- I'll pay for it.
S: Exactly.

10. What’s next for Hail Alien?

M: Our next show.
S: Yeah, exactly. [both laugh]
M: What’s next for Hail Alien? Hopefully a record deal and then from there a real album and a tour.
S: Yeah. A tour, an album, tour the album... get on our promotion game going.

11. Any shoutouts?

M: Yeah, shout out to Kyle Pavone.
S: Hi, Mom.