Film School hail from San Francisco in California. The band consists of Krayg Burton on vocals and guitar, Nyles Lannon on guitar, Jason Ruck on keyboards, Justin Labo on bass and Ben Montesano on drums.

Film School have previously released a 7" single 'Harmed' (Full Frame Records. 2000) ; an album 'Brilliant Career'(Me Too Records, 2001) and an EP 'Always Never' (Amazing Grace Records, 2003).

The band recently signed to Beggars Banquet in Britain and released 'On and On', an EP, in September. Their self-titled second album will follow in late January.

Pennyblackmusic spoke to Krayg Burton shortly before they began a British tour supporting The National and at their own headlining gig at the Water Rat's in London.

PB : I first heard about you guys when you toured over here last year.

KB : That was last September. We came out for about a week and a half of shows.

PB : Apart from last year's tour is that the first time you have played outside of the States ?

KB : Yes, it was. Our current line up has been together for about three years. I started the band in '98 as a two piece. We did the 7 inch, then we split up, and then I put together a batch of songs and recorded 'Brilliant Career'. Lots of people helped out, and I started writing songs with the band at that point. We became much more of a collaborative band and that's how we have been for the last three years.

PB : Both the album and the 7 inch are both credited to Film School, aren't they ?

KB : Yeah, its all credited to Film School. It's just the members that have changed.

PB : Has San Francisco got a big music scene ?

KB : It has got a huge music scene, but it is super cool. Just in the last few years there's been so much growth. It's really alive.

PB :. Why did you choose to sign to Beggar's ? They're a good label

KB : It's been great. It's like everything worked out perfectly with them. We have always been fans of all their bands that have been part of the Beggars group, such as those who are on the 4AD label. I guess most of the stuff that I have listened to have been on those labels. We talked to other major labels and they weren't really right for us. Beggars isn't a machine. The people there have been so supportive, but I do know Beggars care. I am not saying others don't, but I didn't want to be part of a six month hype and then be dropped. We wanted a label, where we could devlop a career in music, writing good songs and turning fans on rather than being part of the hype train.

PB : A friend of mine described the band's sound to me as The Cure's Robert Smith fronting Slowdive.

KB : I can't hear the Robert Smith thing.

PB : On 'On and On' I can hear The Cure in the keyboards and guitar but not elsewhere.

KB : Some people hear it. I like The Cure, but I am not trying to be them. I grew up listening to a lot of British music, and it doesn't surprise me that I have got some of the mannerisms from those bands in my vocal. I think that happens with the music you listen to and a lot of my favourite bands are British.

PB : How would you describe the band's sound ?

KB : I wouldn't say we do have a shoegazing element, although we are early 90's shoegazing fans. We all like My Bloody Valentine for example. It's almost impossible to describe, but I would say that it is psych indie rock.

PB : Is the album done ?

KB : Yeah, we saw the test pressing today. It's coming out on vinyl as well.

PB : Future plans ?

KB : I think after The National we will be in the States for a few months.

PB : Any messages for your fans ?

KB : We have got this far with our fans. We are just grateful they like our music and so we just want to continue in a way we feel comfortable.

PB : Thank you.


The photographs that accompany this article were taken by Anthony Strutt











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