Jun 8, 2016

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Let it be said that Beverly‘s Drew Citron is no shrinking violet. Sure, she lost co-conspirator Frankie Rose soon after the band’s stellar debut album, but Drew pressed on and the new full length ‘The Blue Swell‘ marks a clear improvement in both the songwriting and production departments, continuing the band’s swirly take on febrile dream-pop, perfectly suited to fans of the Breeders and Lush. We asked her a few questions about the new record, its sounds, and the gear and people that went into recording it.

What’s been inspiring your music lately?

I’m really into the new Cate Le Bon, Big Thief, and Dick Diver right now.

What in life brought you to the bittersweet world of having a band?

There’s nothing else for me! I’m just making songs all the time and I like getting together with my friends and playing them, and then traveling all over to play shows.

Beverly‘s songs seem at least in part influenced by shoegazer, but the guitars don’t

The less pedals the better in this regard, because if you want the guitar to sound huge, you want as little disrupting the signal chain as possible when you step on the fuzz.

sound particularly effected – do you get your distortion from the amp or from pedals?

I like to get a high gain, on the verge of breaking up “clean” sound through the amp for the majority of our live show. This way, I only have to use one distortion pedal for a big chorus. The less pedals the better in this regard, because if you want the guitar to sound huge, you want as little disrupting the signal chain as possible when you step on the fuzz.

What fuzz pedal do you use? 

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Wren & Cuff Russian Tall Font (Big Muff emulation)

Wren & Cuff Russian big muff. It’s got a gritty, warm, huge sound, and not a tinny, synthetic one. Some big muffs compress and squash the natural height & tone of the guitar, and create an almost synth-y quality. Which is cool for some songs of course, but not necessarily Beverly songs. The cool thing about playing with pedals is there’s no right answer, and fiddling around with knobs gets real fun, real quick. I really want an EBow, but feel like it’s more of an indefinite borrow than a purchase.

What guitar do you play and what’s the story
behind it?

I play an American {Fender] Strat from the late 80s in a color I’ve dubbed “Olive Grey.” I learned electric guitar on a strat body guitar built by Richie from Richie’s guitar shop, a NYC legend who would be angry I’m mentioning him in an article. When I saved the money for a classic USA strat, this is the one I upgraded to. I love the wide fret board and I play with 11 gauge strings, it’s a great rhythm guitar.

We read you are also a keyboard player, are you into synths? We hear a few in the new album…

Yes! Scott ran to Main Drag and bought their last Korg Minilogue a few months ago. It sold out in a few days. It’s awesome. Everything you could want in an analogue synth, plus programming and built in delay function. It’s affordable and won’t break. That’s important – having a [Roland] Juno 60 is incredible, it’s my favorite synth, but it’s always breaking. I’ve never seen one that has 100% of its functions intact. That said, it’s worth keeping because they’re so special, and the sounds are so beautiful. You can just turn it on and play anything and it inspires an entire song.

How much of your recording is done at home versus in the studio?13244678_1172913492729438_5866700570169130398_n[1]

Our record was tracked by us entirely “at home” or rather, at Alphaville, Scott’s venue in Bushwick. We then did overdubs and some vocals at Dr. Wu’s with ultimate *angel* Yale Yng-Wong. He produced our first album, too.

Is there a person outside the band that’s been important in perfecting your recorded and/or live sound?

So many. Every time I do live sound or record a band or just talk to a musician they share something I hadn’t thought of before. It’s always a dialogue, and it’s my favorite thing to talk about. On record though, I’m going to say Jay Braun, my awesome engineer friend, who recorded a lot of the guitars on the first record, and just has the best taste in music. Shout out to Jay!

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