The Lusitania is brothers, Michael and Blake Duncan, Charles Berry, Adi Kanlick, and Will Daugherty. Adi Kanlick is repping The Lusitania for the purposes of this interview. They are one of the 29+ bands playing one of four stages at the inaugural Neon Desert Music Festival in El Paso on Saturday, April 30, 2011.
The Lusitania is the first band of our El Paso Week of Neon Desert interviews that is actually based in EP. Five strong, I’d say they’re holding things down on the border with their singular brand of rock & roll.
Listen to “Your Existential Hero” from The Lusitania’s debut release, Rain and Rivers, available at Tembloroso Creative Lab.
Click the first pic to go to The Lusitania’s Facebook Page and second, at the end of the interview, to get to their MySpace Page.
Interesting Fact: If you get an out-of-town The Lusitania show early, you’ll most likely catch them playing Frisbee in the parking lot. According to the band, no tour van is complete without an orange Frisbee.
1. I asked another Neon Desert Artist what their name meant and I have to ask you the same thing. Where did The Lusitania come from? Mike said he always wanted to name the band after a shipwreck, so The Lusitania was the name that came to mind. A few years ago he said that some people may think that naming the band The Lusitania would mean that our career would sink, but he said he saw it as a catalyst for war.
2. How would you describe the sound of the El Paso music scene? The music scene in El Paso has become much more diverse in the past few years. The emo music scene was more predominant several years ago, like in the early 2000s, but it has certainly matured from that. There is a lot of variety within the scene now with post punk bands, experimental/psychedelic, singer-songwriters, and rock and roll acts like us.
3. Where does The Lusitania fit within that? I think all the local bands within El Paso fit into their own niche, including us. One of the great parts about having a diverse music scene is that you get variety when you go to shows. So, we’re definitely comfortable with our place in the scene because we’re part of this diverse group of musicians. I don’t think we’d have it any other way.
4. Since you’re from El Paso, do you feel pressure to rock harder than other Neon Desert Artists that aren’t? Any healthy competition with the ones that are? We are really excited to be part of the Neon Desert Music Festival and to be able to share the stage with all these different acts. We definitely don’t feel like there is any competition with any of the other bands. The point of the festival is to be able to see all kinds of different bands and listen to music you may have not been exposed to before.
I think that many people who have seen us live would agree that we give it everything we’ve got when we’re on stage, whether it’s to five people or to a completely packed room. We’re going to bring that same energy with us on the day of the festival.
5. How did you get hooked up with Neon Desert and what do you feel this means for El Paso? We were approached by the organizers of the festival to play several months ago. Considering this is the first real music festival for El Paso, it’s very flattering that they came to us and asked us be a part of it. As a musician and as a resident of El Paso, I think this is a huge step in the right direction. El Paso has always had a very lively music scene and this is only going to bring more attention to it.
The organizers of the festival have already done a really great job in booking some terrific bands and I think there’s nowhere to go but up. Hopefully, this music festival will get to the point where it could be in competition with ACL, Coachella, and Lollapalooza. We are definitely looking forward to the festival, seeing how it progresses in the future, and we hope that they’ll keep inviting us back.