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OREGON MUSIC NEWS STORY TODAY ON LOGAN LYNN & THE GENTRY: "EMOTRONIC GOES POST-PUNK"!

OMN (Oregon Music News) came to The Odditorium the other night while we were setting up for yesterday’s shoot and interviewed me and The Gentry. They ran a story today, along with the interview and some MP3 LIVE audio from yesterday!!! Click HERE to check it out at their site or keep reading below…

From “Oregon Music News”: (5/26/2010)

“Logan Lynn & The Gentry: Emotronic goes post-punk”

It is 9pm and Logan Lynn and The Gentry are scrambling to sound-check in a cavernous warehouse space in Portland’s NW industrial district. “We’re in the Dandy’s kingdom,” Lynn says of The Odditorium, the sprawling studio of the Dandy Warhols.

The main room has giant murals leaning on almost every surface, a small fleet of motorcycles in the rear. There’s a kitchen outfitted better than most restaurants. The oddly placed nooks, crannies, windows and doors suggest a building cobbled together from several smaller ones.

The band is setting up for an early morning video shoot at The Odditorium with local CBS affiliate Koin 6. They’re shooting promo videos too, for a tour they’re kicking off this Thursday, May 27th, at the Doug Fir Lounge with DoublePlusGood and Fleshtone.

Logan Lynn is known for his emotronic, electro-pop, and OMN has profiled him before. In the past he’s mostly performed alone, sometimes bringing along a producer like Cars & Trains, while he stood out front crooning into a mic over layers of soft electronics. But for this Thursday’s show, and this summer’s upcoming tour, he’s brought along a full band: slamming dance-electro rockers The Gentry.

He calls himself a “bad hostess” as the band hurries to set up. He seems anxious, but affable. Will an act that’s gained popularity for soft, emotive electronics sit well with an accustomed fan base after adding a full, raucous band?

“I was scared about what people were gonna do,” Lynn says. But after their first performance at Blow Pony in February, “We had every single ear and eye on us. They were into it. I checked the video just to make sure. It’s real.”

The transition began in December “and we just went full force, we started practicing 30 hours a week.” OMN caught up with Logan Lynn, and Gino Mari (vocals, guitar), Steve Taylor (synthesizers, bass), and Andrew Carrion [A.C.] (drums) of The Gentry between rehearsals to talk about the change. Plus, there’s a new live track of their collaboration below.

(To listen to Logan Lynn and The Gentry rocking out on “Bottom Your Way to the Top” (LIVE at the Dandy Warhol’s Odditorium on 5/25/2010) click HERE.)

OMN: Looking at some old stuff, I noticed that Gino had done a remix for you. Is that where the relationship began?

Logan: Well kinda. The remix relationship had happened because they had played a show with us when we played with Dhalia [at East End]. I was impressed with how they were. It was the first I had sort of seen of electronic rock or something that made me want to dance, but with live instruments. Back then… there were a lot of people trying to do that and [The Gentry] were wild enough to entertain me. When it was time to do the remix record I hollered at them cuz I knew that they would be able to do something good… A couple weeks into doing the remixes I got a weird licensing deal from my label, and it was for some new Cedric the Entertainer show [laughs]. It was for this scene where, they’re like in the car “rollin’ up” and it was supposed to be some sort of hip-hop in the car, and then when they open the door it needed to get really “gay” [everyone laughs]. It was from Dreamworks or something.

Gino: Yeah, I think it was like a cop or something.

Logan: It’s like a cop rolls up there, and then they roll down the window, and it sounds really gay. So I was like if anyone can do something weird… out of the 28 guys I had doing remixes, these guys could do it. None of them are gay, but I knew that they had dirty minds. So I just picked the people that I thought were most perverted on the list.

OMN: Gino qualifies.

Gino: I’m perverted? You think I’m perverted? I’m just a sweet guy, what are you talking about? I am a gentle giant.

Logan: I disagree

[Laughter]

OMN: I’m wondering, where was the approach?

Logan: You came to my listening party.

Gino: Yeah that’s right.

Logan: I had a hell of a time figuring out my live show, from the first time I started playing until now. It has taken a while.

OMN: With your live show before, it was pretty much pre-programmed with you singing?

Logan: Yeah. The idea initially was a “singing DJ” and then somewhere along the line it turned more into like…

OMN
: Being the performer versus being the DJ.

Logan: Right, I took the headphones off and stepped up. It just took me a while. I have crippling stage-fright, historically. That was my problem I think. So I was gradually getting more recognition, and feeling less comfortable as more people were looking and having opinions about what I was doing on stage. And it became clear that I needed a band, and I wanted to work with somebody who I respected. And these guys came to my…

Gino: Aww. [laughs]

Logan: Listening party and something clicked, and I was like “What are you guys doing? Are you guys really busy right now?”

OMN: How long was that transition in your career?

Logan: From 2000 when my first record came out.

OMN: So really that long, almost ten years before you decided: “I need to get a band.”

Logan: Yes. But there was like 6 years where I was like in party town, living in an alternate universe. I lost some time to the party wagon. I think I got serious about all this in 2007. Since [then] it’s been one thing after another. It started with my producer from Pillar to Post. I kind of dragged him on stage an said “You HAVE to do this, we’re gonna go and play shows!” And he ended up moving. Then, I worked with Cars & Trains. He’s an indie, electro-pop, one-man show and it was great, I did that for a year. And then it was just time to make it louder and wilder. I needed something to pull me out of my shell, I think, and the loudness has done that. And with Gino, these guys on stage, it’s way less scary, it’s fun instead of being terrifying.

OMN: From seeing past Gentry shows, Gino is a hell of a frontman.

Logan: Totally.

Gino: Aww, guys.

Logan: I’m shy and he’s not.

OMN: But for this project at least, Logan, you’re the actual frontman, so you have to sort of step up, beyond somebody who is used to having that role.

Gino: But what’s good is that I kind of force him to. Because it’s not like I sit back. I’m still me.

Logan: He’s still Gino out there.

Gino: I’m still all about that rock ‘n’ roll, escapist raaaa, crazy.

OMN: So what are your roles now. I mean A.C., he’s quiet in person, but he’s a monster on drums. For Gino, are you playing mostly backup stuff?

Gino: I play guitar, and I sing backup stuff, and I’m gonna do keyboards. But mostly just harmonies and guitar.

OMN: Steve, what’s your role.

Steve: I play mostly synth and electric bass. I don’t really play leads or anything like that now, it’s all bass.

OMN: For The Gentry, as a band, do you have a dedicated bassist right now?

Gino: It’s a machine.

Logan: We like computers.

Steve: After seven of them we replaced them with a machine.

[Laughter]

Logan: The way that the show goes, just to give you an idea, we’ve merged the units. We’re going on tour together as kind of one band, but it’s two bands. The Gentry sort of starts off the set, and plays their set… and they kind of bring me on stage. [Then] we play a whole other set where they don’t really change their position, except that Gino sort of slides over, and I pop out… Once I pop on, they’re still The Gentry, but it’s my songs. But they’ve been totally reworked by these guys.

OMN: And are you gonna do anything by yourself, or is everything formatted for a band?

Logan: No, it’s all brand new.

Steve: There was talk…

Logan: There are some times where its calm, and it’s just me singing. But there’s not really time where I go and clutch the mic in anticipation of something happening.

OMN: Going back and listening to your stuff, Logan, it seems really sensitive. The emo thing gets tagged to you a lot.

Logan: Sure.

OMN: But I think of The Gentry as being really macho. Even though it is dance music and ’80s, there’s a certain machismo to it.

Logan: Its chick bangin-rock.

OMN: Yeah so now its chick-bangin’ rock mixed with dude-bangin’ rock.

[Laughter]

Gino: It’s just an appreciation of sex.

Logan: Just bangin’ all around. I’ve been called the “Ambassador of Bisexuality” before, and I’m not bisexual. But my imagery that I put out in my videos… I had the first gay kiss on MTV, well man-to-man.

OMN: Are you worried about alienating people who came to like your through your softer sound?

Logan: I don’t know, I’m kind of in the business of alienating people. In the beginning, I was making records that I didn’t think anybody was going to listen to. And then when they started listening I changed it up again and then made some weird electro-clash record. I think the common element in all my work is me, and my words, and my songs, and my melodies. That stays the same no matter what the energy behind it is. This is just like a brand new energy that’s been worked into the same songs. People are going to recognize the songs. They just hit heavier and have grown large and epic instead of soft and sweet.

OMN: But do you think it still is dance-y?

Logan: Oh, it’s so dance-y.

Gino: It kind of like [an] electronic Buzzcocks, Stooges. Really primal simple parts.

Steve: We really tapped into ’70s punk for a lot of these songs.

Logan: It’s like dance-punk.

OMN: ’70s punk is the last thing I would ever think when I heard your stuff.

Logan: I am not punk though. That’s the thing, that’s what I’m saying. I haven’t changed the way I’m singing necessarily. It’s them, they’ve brought their Gentry. That’s the thing. I’m still soft. They’re hard, I’m soft and it comes together in this new way. But it’s familiar. I think we’ll hold on to my fans, and [The Gentry] are gonna get some new ones.

OMN: And you’re comfortable now, or even excited.

Logan: I’m so excited, everything rules. And even A.C.’s energy back there… That alone versus some programmed beat it changes the whole fucking scope.

Steve: It changes the whole dynamic entirely.

Gino: Well the three of us have been playing [as The Gentry] for so long we have a natural…

OMN: It’s been like six years.

Gino: Even longer. What’s cool is that we get to try out a lot of things that we’re interested in the moment. And it’s nice to not be the frontman, cuz I’ve always been the frontman. I’ve always had to be the singer. To just be a guitar player… it’s fun, the simplicity of being able to leave [the mic]. I’m not attached to a microphone, though I do sing vocals I can leave, and the song isn’t done [just] because I’m not singing.

Logan: You can jump off the stage.

Gino: Exactly, I can do my crazy thing and it lets me take that exhibition further because I’m not trapped to the center of the stage and singing into my mic [where] if I miss my cue everything is fucked.

Logan: That’s my job.

Gino: It’s cool too, because we’ve been really into dynamics lately and we get to do some experiments with some really soft parts of songs and then big, loud. Just experimenting with playing as a band rather than being an electronic unit. I mean we still use computers and we still…

OMN: So there’s still a lot of programming there, but some of the songs are free form.

Logan: Some have [no programming].

Gino: And they’re totally different from The Gentry.

Logan: Its working, but its been an adjustment.

OMN: Especially as a DJ where you have a record, a program, something else in front of you the whole time.

Logan: Definitely. It’s a new world. It’s a more enjoyable world from what I’ve experienced so far… There’s not one sound within our band or within our set that makes it pinpointable, but it’s all one thing. It’s all hard, fast, rock, dance, wildness.

OMN: Are you working on any new material that you’ve only just started with the band, or is this all old material?

Logan: No, no. Yea, I finished making a new record, which we’re mixing now. So I’d say half the set is stuff from this new record that nobody has ever heard before. They’re gonna hear it the first time as The Gentry’s version of it.

OMN: Is there anything from that you’d be willing to share with OMN?

Logan: Sure, yeah definitely, but I have to check with some people on that [laughs]. I’m not in charge of me anymore.

Logan Lynn seems anxious but confident about the new sound. “I’m in contact with the people who are listening to my music. That’s how this whole thing started, that’s how its built up to this point. That’s how I know somebody’s gonna be there tomorrow.”

It’s those relationships that fuel Lynn’s music.

“It’s great that I get good reviews or whatever, but the people who I actually care about are the people I’m talking to online, that are coming up to me after shows, that are interested in what they just heard. You gotta feed the tree.”

Logan Lynn and The Gentry will be playing this Thursday, May 27th at the Doug Fir Lounge, 9pm with DoublePlusGood and Fleshtone.

Category: Interviews, Music, News, Parties and Events, Press, Reviews, Shows, Tour, Uncategorized, Unreleased Material

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