“I feel like we’re at the peak of ourselves as a band, so I’m excited to get out there and play these songs,” says William Keegan, guitarist and vocalist of SoCal power-poppy garage rockers Together Pangea. The trio released their fifth full-length, DYE, last October on Nettwerk Records, and they’ve dropped numerous singles and videos from the release, most recently “Wanted Out,” an instant anthem which resembles the sleazy neo-glam of Toilet Boys.
Together Pangea have already played a number of shows in support of DYE out West, and in late March they kick off a US tour that will have them headlining Underground Arts on April 9th (with immediate support coming from our friends, Skating Polly). During my recent phone chat with Keegan he tells me that getting to play live is his favorite way to interact with fans: “I think the ultimate response – the ultimate feedback – is when you play it live and fans already know the words and sing along with you. We’ve been on the road, so we’re starting to hear that with DYE, which is really exciting.”
During our chat, Keegan reveals to me that there was a time prior to working on DYE that the band wasn’t sure of its future, but that once the album process began Together Pangea was almost immediately rejuvenated: “Just recording this album and putting it out and going on tour have been really great.” And, like most of the artists who’ve released albums in the past year, Together Pangea had a little more time than usual to work on DYE, despite the fact that most of the songs were written prior to the pandemic.
“We had a lot more time to rehearse before going into the studio… We also took a month doing it, which we normally don’t. We did it like a 9-5. We showed up every morning and worked on it all day.”
Despite the fact that Together Pangea seem to reside firmly within the realm of contemporary garage bands, when I ask William Keegan about some of his favorite albums, his taste proves to be notably varied, although admits that narrowing it down can be hard. “We were trying to come up with our top 10 albums recently and I had a lot of trouble with it,” he says, before telling me that his list would definitely have to include The Beatles’ the White Album, Frank Ocean’s Channel Orange, Violent Femmes’ self-titled debut, and Smashing Pumpkins’ Siamese Dream. He also tells me that a lot of his favorite music from his teen years still holds a special place in his heart: “I really liked Weezer and Modest Mouse… and I was a K Records fan in high school… A lot of people probably say this, but there’s something about when you’re a teenager and in your early twenties, when you’re figuring yourself out, and the music you listen to is such an important part of your identity.”
In addition to their upcoming US dates, Together Pangea has a month’s worth of European dates throughout June and July, both playing festivals and opening for Jimmy Eat World and The Get Up Kids, which Keegan tells me he’s super excited about: “It’s gonna be fun to be on tour with Jimmy Eat World and The Get Up Kids. I grew up loving both of them.” And when I ask if he has any dream bands with whom to share a stage, he tells me that it’s primarily bands from his teen years, even if some of them may not be quite the same artists he grew up loving: “The teenager in me wants to play with all those bands that I listened to as a teen, so Modest Mouse and Smashing Pumpkins, even though Billy Corgan is kind of weird…”
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