I recently caught up with Chris Ward and Andrew Thiboldeaux of Philadelphia’s own “Pattern is Movement”. They were the 2008 January issue of Philly Weekly’s “biggest indie bands” (and in 2013 are Philthy Mag’s biggest indie band to watch). If you look them up online they are likened to Dirty Projectors, Beirut and Grizzly Bear. I dont really lump them into that category as Pattern is Movement is their own unique sound that they have been cultivating for the past decade. I don’t normally say this but: Chris and Andrew are seriously two of the nicest people I have ever met in my life. They are going to be headlining at the Union Transfer in Philadephia tomorrow night (10/24). You can purchase tickets here. You seriously need to go see this show. Their music changed my life and it will most likely change yours for the better after this experience. You can pick up their new 12″ entitled “Suckling/Untitled” at the UT show to boot!
Chris and Andrew are ad-mist a tour right now but took a moment to speak to my publication.
Interview Legend: PT: Paul Thorson(interviewer) / CW:Chris Ward / AT: Andrew Thiboldeaux
PT:What does your band name mean / where was it derived from?
CW: We took the name from t.s eliot’s “burnt norton.” Not exactly sure what it means, but when we saw it spelled it out – we all loved it!
PT:How did you and Andrew meet?
CW: Andrew and I met when we were teenagers at youth group. We both loved Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic” and we both decided to start a rap group, but not just any ole rap group – a christian rap group! We have been making music ever since.
PT:Andrew’s voice is pretty amazing. It almost seems as if he was classicly trained. Can you elaborate on this?
CW: He is not classically trained — its all natural.
PT: I first met you and Andrew (i think it was 2005) in Newark Delaware at a U of D show. What i loved the most of your set was the use of analog instruments. What are your most notable analog instruments used in your albums and live performances?
AT: My favorite has probably been the 150 year old celeste we used on our latest album. You could feel the peoples’ bones who made the thing in every note you played.
PT:What is Pattern is Movement trying to achieve musically?
AT: On previous releases we tended toward the functional when it came to performances to tape, and a big part of the focus was on real-time production. For this latest album our goal was to really capture some instinctual performances, and hit the production side of things harder during mixing. I think the result is our truest album, emotionally.
PT: Who influences you?
AT: I was inspired by a lot of modern gospel and r&b players on this album. The album wound up sounding more like ‘rhythm and beard’, but I definitely let that part of me take the reigns for a good chunk of this album. CW: I was very inspired by James Blake, Thundercat and Drake for this album.
PT: How has it been working with Home Tapes? I have heard nothing but great things about this label.
CW: Hometapes are an amazing label and more amazing people. They have been such a wonderful support to both Andrew and I during this whole record. We love them like family.
PT:If you could pinpoint it, what was your favorite show that you have performed and why?
AT: I’d say LA with St. Vincent a few years back. We were still getting our sea legs at the beginning of that tour, but by that LA show a few days in, we felt like sea captains, but for a little while. CW: I’d say it would be when we played with the Roots at Brooklyn Bowl. I remember distinctly looking behind me and seeing Questlove and feeling a rush of excitement I’ve never had before on stage.
PT: I have heard your band cover Radiohead and Beyonce, where can your fans get recordings of these amazing covers? Were they ever released?
CW: Radiohead was never recorded, however, you can hear the Beyonce cover on Daytrotter and its on a tour only EP. Also – we just covered D’angelo and its available on our new 12″ single.
PT: Chris, you have really soft hands (seriously you do). Can you tell us your skincare regimen and how you keep them so soft?
CW: HA! Its just all natural man!
PT: “Suckling”is a very “mystical” release. It appears if magic may or may not have been involved. If you agree with this statement: could you elaborate?
CW: No magic – just lots of dim lighting in the studio.
PT: Who is the artist and what is the meaning behind the album art of “Suckling”?
CW: Adam Heathcott from Hometapes created the art and I have no clue of the meaning, but I do know its rad!