Getting To Know Patternist
Getting To Know Patternist
Patternist is ready to rock your world with their blissfully thought provoking tapestries in the grand tradition of Bad Suns and The Rocket Summer. Fronted by musician Gabe Mouer, Patternist has recently issued their full length debut entitled I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here on InVogue Records. Patternist has toured with The Stolen and is about to hit the road with Andrés, which includes a local stop at Chain Reaction in Anaheim on October 30th. Highwire Daze recently caught up with Gabe Mouer to find out a whole lot more about Patternist and their dynamic new album. Read on…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Patternist, and how long the band has been together.
My name is Gabe, I write, perform, record, produce, and mix in Patternist, I sing and play guitar live. I’ve been putting out songs as Patternist since mid 2015.
Where is the band based out of and what is the local music scene like there?
The weird thing about Patternist is that we kind of have no home base, most of the year we live directly in between Seattle and Portland, and spend a few months out in Atlanta, GA. We can’t really claim any place as home. Ashton (bass) and I both graduated from Portland State, and started the band that year, so we still cling to Portland as our “official” city, haha. The local scene in Portland is strange and very capricious in activity, mostly catering to harder bands and shoe gaze-y, 90’s revival indie bands. Most of its All-Ages venues have closed over the last 5 or so years. It can be a hard town.
How did you wind up signing with InVogue Records?
We’ve been in contact with Nick (CEO of InVogue) for a little over a year, around the time I started working on the LP. He was very passionate about the project and we kept in touch as I was turning this disparate collection of demos into an album. It was important to me that we partnered with a label that were fans of what we’re doing above all else, and when I sent Nick the record he just seemed to get it. We were lucky.
Is there any overall story or concept behind the album title I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here?
Yeah, so I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here is a semi-concept album comprised of 10 short stories that share a common thread of exploring doubt and self-isolation. The album title is taken from Summer Reading List, track 9 on the record. When I was trying to come up with a title for the album I was going back through the lyrics and it leapt out at me. I had unwittingly written what’s basically the slogan for my life, haha. It felt very fitting for the overall theme.
Select two songs from I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here and what inspired the lyrics.
The whole record is very personal to me, but two songs where I feel like I really accomplished what I set out to do would probably be Bikes and Summer Reading List.
Bikes is a song about leaving everything you’ve known in the middle of your formative years, and how nostalgia can eat away at us as adults. Through a series of vignettes, I was aiming to capture those little memories that feel inconsequential at the time but can leave a heavy mark.
Summer Reading List is a track I was initially hesitant to put on the record because I thought I might come off like too much of a dick, haha. But I wanted to tap into that paradoxical perception you have of yourself and your peers when you’re a moody, shy teenager. This very Holden Caulfield-esque place of utter self-loathing while maintaining delusions of intellectual superiority.
What are you looking forward to the most about your upcoming tour with Andrés?
Anytime we’re on the road I feel most content, it’ll be great getting to hit a lot of cities we’ve never played before. I think with Andrés’ connection to the post-hardcore scene with bands like Dance Gavin Dance and Issues, we’ll be playing to a crowd that’s pretty new for us!
What could one expect from a live Patternist show?
If anything the songs feel larger live, especially the older songs. I’ve been trying to take a much more organic and natural approach to our live show over the last year, I want things to feel more raw and visceral, rather than just recreating the recordings.
If Patternist could open for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Oh wow, it’s so hard to choose. I’d still love to open for a band like Jimmy Eat World — Clarity and Bleed American had a profound impact on me growing up and that band is still pumping out solid records. I got to see them back in July with Third Eye Blind, I almost never go to shows that I’m not playing anymore, it was transcendent, haha. If I can cheat and give a second, it’d be Joyce Manor.
You made a guest appearance on The Stolen’s song Millennial. How did that come about and what does that song mean to you?
The Stolen guys have become really good friends of ours since we toured together back in 2018. Ashton and I talk to Rob (guitar, songwriter and producer) and Mike (drums) a few times a week. We’ve got a big group chat going, haha. Rob and I had talked about working on music together for awhile, and we both started working on our respective LPs at the same time. He reached out and asked me if I wanted to do some keys/synths and help to flesh out harmonies on this track that eventually became Millennial, and I jumped at the opportunity. Reading the lyrics, it just felt like the shit I think about all day, and I told Rob as much. That song is funny, because from a lyrical perspective it fits right in with all of the tracks on I Don’t Know What I’m Doing Here, it just happened to come from Rob’s brain instead of my own.
What would you like a listener to remember the most after hearing your music for the first time?
The main takeaway I hope sticks with people after listening to Patternist is that they’re not alone in living with doubt.
What’s up in the New Year for Patternist?
Oh man, if only I could plan that far ahead. I just try to take it month by month. Hopefully more touring, and if we’re lucky enough that someone wants us to make another record, we’ll start work on that. But I’m just as in the dark as everyone else as to what the future holds.
Any final words of wisdom?
Guitars are cool, don’t let anyone convince you that the electric guitar isn’t a uniquely effective and important tool for self expression. Make more guitar records…
(Interview by Ken Morton)
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