After making its debut in 2012, the Los Angeles-based band has spent the last several years evolving from vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Kimi Recor's solo project to an all-powerful glam '80s alternative band–with a twist. DRÆMINGS, now comprised of Kimi Recor (vocals, guitars), Tom Thorson (bass, synth), Christopher Vick (guitars), and Nathaniel Meek (drums) is looking to end their month-lng residency at The Echo with an EP release party on Monday, April 24. They will be accompanied Monday night by Ones To Watch favorite Lauren Ruth Ward, Chilean pop star Francisca Valenzuela, and future rock band CASSINI.
The quartet announced the self-titled EP, DRÆMINGS, is due for release on April 21. If the band's previously released and already loved singles, "Fire in Hell," and "Great Escape," are any indication, the EP should be stellar. Pre-order the record here.
Ahead of the big day, we had the chance to catch up with vocalist Kimi Recor. She touches on the band's residency at The Echo, themes of global awareness and feminism in the upcoming EP, plus some very valuable tips for new artists in the LA music scene.
Read more below and RSVP for Monday's show here!
OTW: Congrats on
your Echo residency this month! Why do you think the Echo is such an
important venue for up and coming artists? What have been your favorite
shows there as a fan?
Kimi Recor: I’ve been going to shows at The Echo since before I moved down to LA. It’s such an iconic, east side venue. The sound is great, the room feels good, and they always have good music. It’s one of my favorite venues, and it feels like home to me. I always love the shows Part-Time Punks put on, especially when they have local bands covering classic bands from the 80s or 90s. I saw King Woman there recently, and she was just beyond amazing. I also remember seeing Chelsea Wolfe on the Echo stage years ago, and you could just tell she was going to be a superstar.
OTW: How has the residency been going so far? Any stand out moments?
Kimi Recor: The residency has been amazing. We’re very lucky that the Echo lets us turn each residency night into a themed, demented surrealist prom. I think every night has its standout moments- getting to play music alongside these super talented bands, that we also count as friends is beyond our wildest dreams. Covering Enya on night one was definitely one of my favorite moments.
OTW: How did you go about choosing Lauren Ruth Ward, Francisca Valenzuela and Cassini as support for the April 24 show?
Kimi Recor: All the bands that played our residency are also good friends of ours. That goes for the last lineup as well. Lauren and company are dear friends of mine, whose meteoric rise has been so incredible to watch. Francisca is one of the most talented women I know–besides being a Chilean super music star, she also created Ruidosa, a beautiful female-powered festival in Chile (and Mexico). I am always inspired by her, and SO excited that she was in town the night of the residency. Kin from Cassini is also a good friend–and his band is SO good!
OTW: How did you meet your band? How do they contribute to the live show?
Kimi Recor: Chris, my guitar player, and I have been playing in bands together FOREVER. He is my brother from another mother, and the person who taught me how to play guitar. Thorson, our bass player, came on board about two years ago, when DRÆMINGS was still my solo project, and I needed a bass player for a tour. Nathaniel joined late August, after our last drummer went to medical school. Although it started out as a solo project, DRÆMINGS is now very much a full band. We wrote the new EP together as a band, Thorson produced it, and we’re all working super hard on creating magic around it. I couldn’t do DRÆMINGS without my boys–they’re my brothers in weirdness.
OTW: Why is it important for you to become
more political with your writing now more than ever? What themes do your
upcoming EP touch on?
Kimi Recor: Well, it goes without saying that we live in strange times. I think we’ve lived in a bubble for a long time–and to have it burst open the way it has…well it’s changed everything really. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t feel the heaviness and fear that bears on the world. It seeps into everything. Nothing feels safe, and in a way, it just also shows the privilege we’ve had for such a long time. There’s places in the world that have never felt safe, that always seem to be in turmoil–and in comparison, to that, we still have it easy. But I think there’s an awareness now that wasn’t there before. I think this new EP touches on that. I feel a true loss happening–and the heartbreak that our EP carries isn’t a personal one, it’s something that is our shared consciousness.
Another theme that we explored was this new reality that is lived largely in our computers, and how it feels like it dehumanizes everything. It’s figuring out a way to cope with the fact that we are slowly turning into cyborgs.
I think one of the heaviest themes in the EP, however, is about finding my voice as a woman in a world that is still largely run by men. Over the past few years I was locked into a label situation that felt very oppressive, and within this EP, I got to explore my own voice and freedom again–it’s angry, sad, but most of all its powerful and resilient. Getting to sing the songs every week makes me feel like I get to take my power back again and again.
OTW: You're also a major part of Play Like A Girl Records - tell us about how that started and what you guy do/stand for.
Kimi Recor: PLAG Records is an off-shoot of our female collective, Play Like A Girl. We have such an incredible music community, and we wanted a way to document and release music, and help bands and musicians that we truly believe in build themselves up. We have so many rad releases lined up, and can’t wait to share them!
OTW: How else do you stay involved in the LA
Kimi Recor: I go out almost every night to see bands. I’m either at the shows PLAG throws, or at friend’s band’s shows, or at total stranger’s shows to check out something new and different. I am SO inspired by all the incredible musicians that have flocked to LA–it’s really a magical place right now. It doesn’t matter what genre you like–there’s something for everyone, and it’s all KILLER!
Photo by : Emery Becker
OTW: What are your top tips for new bands in the LA community?
Kimi Recor: Practice. Write songs. Go see other bands. Introduce yourself. Make friends. Start playing shows. Play all the shows you can. Keep seeing other bands. Once you start having fans, get pickier about what shows you play. Play out of town. Invest in yourself. Don’t sign anything without showing a lawyer. If you want your band to make money–run it like a business. If you want to just have fun, just have fun. It’s what you make it.
OTW: Who are 3 artists on your Ones To Watch list (up and coming) and why?
Kimi Recor: There’s so many!
Iress- If you love heavy music- these kids are it. They make doom-metalesque shoegaze, and Michelle’s vocals will rip your heart out of your chest.
Holy Wars- I give these guys six months to blow up into the mega-stars they deserve to be. Their live show is flawless, and their songs are insane.
Sabrina Is Not In This Chat - They’re not even out of high school yet, and these girls are making some of the coolest, strangest music I’ve heard–also their singer does crazy spoken word ‘ala Patti Smith. I am completely smitten with them.
OTW: What should we be prepared for on April 24?
Kimi Recor: Complete and utter madness. We are releasing our EP on vinyl via PLAG Records–and have 250 limited edition copies we’ll be selling. There will be surreal video installation art, a stacked line-up of talent, and a whole lot of neon nightmare madness. The theme of the night is Fortune, so come get some of the good luck we’ll be casting onto the audience.