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The Spiraling Sounds of Lilac Kings

The Spiraling Sounds of Lilac Kings

The Spiraling Sounds of Lilac Kings

Meet Lilac Kings from Oklahoma, ready take on the nation with their exhilarating indie rock / post hardcore reveries.  Love You More is the name of their latest EP, now available via InVogue Records – and it’s destined to tantalize the senses of all types of music fans looking to be swept away by gloriously vibrant melodies and impactful lyrics.  Featured on the EP is very special guest Aaron Gillespie from Underoath on the song Shore Leave, lending his massive talents to an already impassioned recording.  Highwire Daze recently caught up with guitarist / vocalist Dylan McBride (also in the band Cicadia) to find out a whole lot more about the spiraling sounds of Lilac Kings.  Read on…

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Lilac Kings, and how long the band has been together.
Hey there, I’m Dylan. I write and arrange all of the music for Lilac. And I also play guitar and sing. The band in it’s current state has been together for about a year and four months. The band started as a solo/studio project of mine. I rounded up some pals from other bands to help me put on a live show and eventually got to where we are now. And everything fits super well.

Where is the band based out of and what is the local music scene like there?
Well, when I started the band, we were based out of Tulsa. I’m still here in Tulsa and the other guys are all in OKC. We make it work but it does make interview things difficult at times. The scene is interesting. It’s small. I’ve noticed in touring though that the talent in our scene is phenomenal. I believe that it’s harder to break out here than other places, therefore pushing out local musicians harder to attain the momentum. It can be neat to see.

How did you wind up signing with In Vogue Records?
We were nearing the end of our contract with We Are Triumphant Records and beginning our journey with our new manager Jack White of Get Even Entertainment. He put out some feelers and InVogue seemed to be the right fit.

Is there any overall story or concept behind the Love You More EP title?
Not necessarily. I suppose you could derive that each song, in it’s own way, is about self love.

Who produced Love You More and what was it like working with them?
Our guitarist Skyler Wilkerson produced the record. He’s phenomenal. It was great working on this one because we had taken a lot of time off work to tour the west coast and then the virus hit. So we holed up in his studio and recorded all of these songs.

Select two songs from Love You More and what inspired the lyrics.
Letting Go was inspired by that feeling you get when you’re exhausted with the monotony of every day life and you think to yourself “Man, I really need a vacation.” I really wanted to do something chill and feel good.

Shore Leave is about letting go of the establishment of religion. I know a lot of us especially in the Midwest and the south have gone through some difficult experiences with that. But also about getting out and experiencing love and spiritualism yourself. Finding it yourself. Without the overly mandated politics that don’t even have much to do with the texts or foundational beliefs of whatever it is you believe.

What was it like working with Aaron Gillespie on the song Shore Leave and how did Aaron become involved with the recording process?
Jack hit us up one day like “Hey, y’all want Aaron on a song? I know the dude (or how to get a hold of him)”. And we were like “Uhhhh yeah!?”. It was rad. He’s a really nice guy. And we were all stoked to work with him seeing as we’ve followed his work since we were basically kiddos. Definitely surreal.

What has it been like to release new music right in the middle of a pandemic? Have you had any shows or tours cancelled because of it?
It was strange. However, we felt no pause in releasing new music. We felt it was an important time for music. We love creating it as well and I feel like we’ll always have something to put out no matter what the current climate is. As far as touring, we had a 20 day run starting on March 13th that we had to cancel due to the virus hitting the states literally RIGHT THEN. It’s fine though, we migrated all of our efforts into producing Love You More.

What could one expect from a live Lilac Kings show?
You can expect Cam to hit the crap out of his drums (he’s so aggressive) and you can expect Caleb to slam his head around and shimmy and shake. We like to keep the energy high and the performance tight. But also we love cracking jokes with each other on stage. So, smiles all around.

If Lilac Kings could open for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Oh man, what a tough one. I think right now, we’d really fit in on a show with the band Camino. But also Circa Survive. From the past, I’d go with Edison Glass. Just because they’re a huge influence of mine. Also, I never got to see them play.

If the music of Lilac Kings was a donut, what kind would it be and why?
Haha, I love this. We’d be an octagon donut because of the slight math rock influences. We’d definitely have sprinkles because we’re kinda sparkly. I’d go with chocolate since we’ve got some darker, emotional aspects to our lyrics.

What’s up next Lilac Kings?
Writing and recording more music! Not much else to do currently, the way we see it. But when touring ramps back up, we’ll be out there on the road trying to collect some experiences!

Any final words of wisdom?
Love yourself. Give yourself a break from time to time. Don’t be afraid to leave friend groups that hurt. Don’t be afraid to embrace love from others that you don’t think you deserve. And don’t be afraid to hand out love to others. But seriously. Love yourself.

(Interview by Ken Morton)

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