Meet Cardboard Kids from Tyler, Texas! Founded by singer / songwriter Jake Germany, their edgy indie sound is destined to blissfully rock your world. The collective has recently unleashed a dynamic new EP entitled Demons On The Ropes, a disc of wildly infectious tunes that should garner the band a good deal of attention. In this interview with Jake Germany we discuss his thoughts on working with a full on band, the future of his solo endeavors, their unusual yet sublime music video for Damaged, and other wondrous concepts. Read on…
Where is Cardboard Kids based out of and what is the music scene like there?
We’re currently based in Tyler, Texas. It’s a super small town in East Texas. The scene here is interesting. We’ve got several older bands and musicians such as Eisley, Say Anything, Mutemath, and Ivoryline but as far as the functioning scene around here, its mainly just local metal bands…so it’s odd that we sort of sit in the middle of it all. Definitely an interesting place.
Where did the name of the band Cardboard Kids come from and what made you decide to use that for your band?
Well the last solo record that I put out was actually called Cardboard Kids and the concept behind it was to never let where you’re from define who you are. I think that really applies well to each of us in the band so we sort of just transitioned from that record to this band and decided to own it.
Jake, after recording on your own for so long, what made you decide to form a band?
It was just time. Our drummer, Brandon, has actually been playing with me live off and on since around ’08 and our guitarist, Austin, has kind of always been around and has dipped his hand into the writing process so it just made since to make the move. These guys just get it.
Where did you meet everyone in the band and what other projects have they been in before?
Like I mentioned, Brandon has played with me a lot in the past and he was also in another band called Numerals that was kind of a shoe-gaze rock outfit. Austin was in a great band called The Lion and The Sail. They were a sister fronted indie band that last toured with Eisley before dismembering. Both bands were from our area and were both so talented. I think it was almost like, when those two bands broke up, Austin and Brandon were the only ones that really wanted to keep grinding while everyone else sort of settled into 9-5’s.
Is there any story or concept behind the EP title Demons On The Ropes?
I think that we all have dealt with anxiety and kind of living within our own heads and letting that get the best of us sometimes. I guess its just a title that represents that struggle of overcoming yourself everyday. I think everyone has a little bit of crazy in them.
What inspired the lyrical content for the song Damaged?
We’d prefer for listeners to think what they will. I will say that its come from a pretty twisted point of view, but that’s really it.
Who had the most difficult time lying on the floor and staring at the camera for over four minutes on your video for Damaged?
Hahaha probably Austin. Rewatch that video and count how many times he blinks.
Do you prefer performing with a full on band or performing acoustic?
Full band. People always said I seemed so comfortable onstage alone but it was the most anxiety-filled thing I did haha everything about the show was on my shoulders only. Being up on stage with the guys now is much more fulfilling too. We’re a tiny little family and we feed off of each other almost as much as we feed off of the crowd.
If there was any artist or band or either current or in history that you would like to open up for, who would it be and why?
Oh man…that’s so tough. If it were up to me, it would definitely be Michael Jackson. Dude was just on another level.
At this point, have you ever played in the Los Angeles area or plan to do so in the future?
We’ve been in the LA area several times individually with our other acts but as Cardboard Kids, we’ll be heading there in the fall after we complete our full length.
Jake, will you still be doing your solo material or just concentrating on Cardboard Kids for now on?
All efforts are geared to Cardboard Kids. I still pull out the acoustic from time to time but for now that’s just between me and my macbook.
What’s up next for Cardboard Kids?
We’re actually moving to Nashville in July. Upon the move, we’ll be tracking the debut full length with Vance Powell (Jack White, The Raconteurs, Kings of Leon) and Tres Sasser. Then, touring. Everywhere.
Any final words of wisdom?
(Interview by Kenneth Morton)
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