By Brian Tucker
The 70s inspired punk and hard rock and roll trio released The New Rock n Roll in January. Now a six-member band, the full-length brought together songs from their last EP Gimmie Some Lips with three new blistering tracks – “Turbocharged,” “First Date,” and “Running From the Law.”
Timed for the album release show at Gravity Records on April 11th is a new video for the song “Hot Mess.” Depending on how things go with the pandemic the band has hopes to re-enter the studio to record a new album of material or release songs as singles as they get tracked and completed.
Below, singer and guitarist J.P. Verardi talks about writing songs and adding to their sound for the upcoming album.
Songs pack a lot of punch at around two minutes or less. Is this harder than it looks to write shorter songs?
Verardi: Honestly no, I kind of just followed a pattern for writing lyrics and riffs for a while and I feel like they are just catchy and to a point. So, that if you like it you’ll play it more than once. The new record I think will be a lot more into production on my half with more instruments and synth instead of just guitar bass and drums. I want to expand for a bigger sound.
My buddy Matt Gabs of the former band The Biters will let me call and chew his ear off about sounds and what we could be doing. It makes me more comfortable that he kind of took me under his wing from barely knowing us and really gives sound advice. With his permission we’re actually going to be doing a Biters cover on the new record
Do you think you’ll be writing different songs post-COVID? Or just more enthusiastic, party-minded material?
Verardi: Both. I’d rather write about the virus considering how much of a bummer it really is. The Girls’ songs, the only real thing I’m trying to do with a message is to tell my story and make people happy. And that’s it. I really just want to make people dance have fun and forget the problems in the world when they come to our shows and just have a good time. Realistically, it’s better if they come to shows and mosh around some. Get out their frustrations in a safe space than to go out and do a bunch of drugs on the streets and do wild reckless stuff that wouldn’t end well for anybody.
Did you start with guitar classes or studying musicians from the punk rock era?
Verardi: First off, I’m so OCD that I make each guitar amp and drum head sound a certain way because music to me is a feeling. If the smallest thing is off there’s just that slight change that may effect your emotions. I want the songs to move you in a way so the overall tones are very important to me. I guess I’m pretty anal about that. But my heroes definitely effected the overall sound, for instance Joan Jett, Johnny Thunders, and Jack White have always played a huge role in my life and I would say it comes a lot from them.
You have a knack for writing catchy, memorable songs. Do you have an idea and go at it, try not to over-think it?
Verardi: Honestly it depends. I wrote “Hot Mess” in literally five minutes and other songs I’ll write something catchy in my phone. Then a month later I may hear something else and write it down then. But usually I like to knock it all out at the same time. If it comes to you in the first fifteen minutes that’s usually what is most catchy and fun to let come out of your mouth so that’s what I’d assume others would want to do as well. I just really want songs people can sing along to.
Have you postponed the release show to later in the year?
Verardi: We haven’t set a date for the release party but I really wanted to give back to the community of everyone who has supported us and let us come this far. I truly am thankful for every single person who comes out to shows or let’s us play show at their establishment. We appreciate every single person and shout out to Matt and Chuck at Reggie’s and Matt Keen of Gravity Records for helping us out all these years.