Today we’re stoked to premiere a new tune from Oakland-based band Babewatch, taken off their upcoming self-titled LP. Along with the tune, the band were kind enough to answer a few questions about their history, the inspiration behind the song and what we can expect the upcoming record. They’ve also provided probably the greatest definition of the term “dad rock” there will ever be. Babewatch is set for a late spring/early summer release date on Some Weird Sin Records, but scroll down to hear “Brian” in all its wigged-out rock n’ roll glory right here on Lo-Pie. – MT
Give us a brief history of Babewatch. How long have you been a band?
Babewatch is four friends: Callum, Chase, Eli and Peter. We’ve been a band for a little over two years and we’re based out of Oakland.
The band was formed in Santa Cruz when we were just young slugs. We came together after Callum and Peter and Chase all hung out as slugs in Europe. When we got back to Santa Cruz we decided to start a rock group of rockers. This is when Eli “big drummer bike man” Lyons, a man with a powerful taste for the Hamms, jumped in. This first incarnation of the group was called West Night Core, named after an infamous bus that ran at night in the redwoods. We cut our teeth on the Santa Cruz day keg/house show circuit. When we moved to Oakland we became Babewatch.
4 boyz, 1 dream.
How has your sound changed over the years?
The band started as a group of friends that hung out and listened to records and drank Hamms. We started to play music and kinda moved into our garage surf guy rock sound. That’s pretty much what our first EP, Guys Hanging Out, is. It was us hanging out and our days in Santa Cruz. Our sound is still garage-y and has a surf vibe to it, but I think we’ve embraced our more psychedelic and 60s garage influences.
What’s the scoop on the new record? Who is putting it out and when can we expect to hear it?
The record is 11 songs and it’s our first full length release. It’s about a lot of stuff like being transformed into a dog, a basketball team in Indiana, a garage, our friends, a pool house, and a guy named Bong Rip Brian. We’re still working out details but you can expect vinyl and cassette and it should be coming out in the late spring. We’re very excited about it!
We’re premiering “Brian” with this interview. What’s the background on this song?
“Brian” is about this Santa Cruz guy named Bong Rip Brian. We don’t actually know if he exists but wild stories circulated about him, and his nickname really cracked us up. We had the music written for a new song on the album and decided to make the lyrics about him. So the song is about him and how we heard he got locked up. It’s got a lot of energy and we think it’s a good representation of the new album.
Did you have any specific goals with this new record? Your last tape was pretty garage-y and lo-fi, but the new tracks sound a lot fuller. Where there any specific changes in songwriting process or production that are notable for this release?
The new album is a lot different than our last tape. The first EP was made up of songs we had played for a long time and had written long before recording. They were created while we were still in Santa Cruz and captured the surf sound that we first started playing.
This new release was written over a few months specifically for this project. It was our first time sitting down and writing deliberately for an album so it was definitely more focused. We moved away from surf rock and focused on our more psych, post punk, and 60s garage influences. It also drew from the Oakland sound and some of the bands we play with up here. We were making trips to LA to record the album so it was a more serious push to create something. It’s got some surf at the core of it, but it’s a mixture of a lot of different styles.
How long did the record take to make? Where did you record it?
We wrote most of the record over the summer. It was recorded in November in Los Angeles at Roach Motel with our friend Greg. We came down a few times and would record and hang out and work on the album. He was an awesome dude to work with and we had a great time recording.
You’ve described your music as “dad rock” in the past. What does “dad rock” mean to you?
Hmmmm, its a tough question and we haven’t figured out what its all about. I think it means being a Dad at a party and changing the song to “Night Moves”.
List yr Top 5 Dad Rock Records.
Hard to put just one Springsteen record but…
(in no particular order)
The River – Bruce Springsteen
Naturally – JJ Cale
Workingman’s Dead – Grateful Dead
Sticky Fingers – Rolling Stones
Surf’s up – Beach Boys
Alternate: Excitable Boy – Warren Zevon
Any plans to tour soon?
We’re doing a short West Coast tour in March. It’s gonna be sweet. We’re also doing a larger tour in the summer after the album comes out.
Here are the March tour dates come check out a show!
3/4 – Eugene – Ant House
3/5 – Portland – The Convent
3/6 – Seattle – Victory Lounge
3/8 – Vancouver – Red Gate
3/10 – SF – Bottom of the Hill
3/11 – Santa Cruz -The Perg
3/12 – LA – Lot 1
Favorite kind of pie?
Callum – Strawberry Rhubarb
Peter – Chicken Pot Pie
Chase – Apple Crumb a la mode
Eli – Lemon Shaker