255 N. Front St.
Sat., 3/12, 10 p.m.
For an electrician, the term “dialectric” is a common technical idiom used in one’s vocabulary. As a fan of electric, rowdy and over-the-top garage/punk performances, the term might become a more frequent turn on the tongue and not as a reference to a roadie who wrangles equipment wiring. Nostalgic admirers of immortal bands like AC/DC and the Ramones will be in for a retro thrill with Port City’s own radiant rockers, The Dielectrics. Like their idols, they play fast-paced with stand-out riffs and hammering beats like it’s still the punk rock movement of the 1970s.
This quartet of raucous musicians, formally members from an array of different musical ventures, joined together in 2007 to form the effervescent band The Dielectrics. Starting as the brainchild of guitarist/vocalist Andrew and fellow guitarist Jason, they juggled the idea of forming a band that embodied straight rock ‘n’ roll. Brad became an addition on drums and Jason suggested Brandon to fill the bass player void. Each member brought their unique approach to the project, collaborating and blending the live shows into a sound that’s “loud with the fury of a knock-down drag-out brawl, leaving ears ringing and rafters loosened,” (Bootleg Magazine).
The release of their EP “Turn it Up!” created buzz and fans delighted in the 2010 follow-up album “All Night Radio” available on iTunes. They have been featured at events such as the Heavy Rebel Weekend and The Port City Rumble. Already being aired on FATCATradio.com and local stations, The Dielectrics are broadcasting their music to larger audiences.
They’ll be shaking the rafters loose this Saturday at the Soapbox, as part of their trek along the East Coast in their trusty van. Andrew, co-founder of The Dielectrics tells encore Magazine what makes their band more than an electric insulator.
e: In your opinion, how have The Dielectrics evolved over time?
AC: Over the past few years, I’d say we’ve evolved a little bit in our tunes that we’ve written. Seems like our first EP “Turn it Up!” was a little less structured and less thought-driven. In other words, we just wrote some riffs and recorded them, which isn’t a bad thing at all! But now, it seems like we take our time writing and we’re not so “rushed” to put out new material. When we went to record our last record ‘All Night Radio,’ we tried to step out of our simplicity, a little bit, and made sure while we were in the studio, we played it how we wanted and what we thought would sound good.
e: What are the major influences when writing the music The Dielectrics play?
AC: You know it’s really hard to focus on maintaining “your own style” and staying to that style of music. In other words, it’s hard to draw from influences sometimes without just purposely ripping them off. Personally, I’m a huge Ramones fan, and a fan of punk rock, but I also love AC/DC, Elvis, and garage rock. You can probably hear all of those influences in some of our tunes, at least that’d be really cool if you did. As far as local acts that I enjoy and admire, I do enjoy ASG and The Needles— both of which have great musicians that we know.
e: What are your rehearsals generally like?
AC: Our rehearsal space is kind of messy —with tons of broken drum sticks, tons of broken strings, ash trays full of butts, and a lot of gear that we’ve collected and stashed in that small room. We also keep our travel cases and merch boxes in there, too. We’ve practiced twice a week for years, and stick to the same rehearsal schedule. Rehearsals are different. If we have a slew of shows coming up, then we put together a set list and run through it a few times, and how we’re going to structure the set. If we have a little bit of time before we have some shows, we try to write and work on new material.
e: Are there any bands or musicians you enjoy sharing the stage with?
AC: Honestly, we’ve played with a lot of really talented bands – more talented than half the shit that comes through the airwaves sometimes (haha). [There] have been some favorite bands we’ve played with from time to time, but we all enjoy different styles of music, so we usually enjoy at least ONE band on the same bill as us. For me personally, we played a slew of shows with our pals the Koffin Kats (from Detroit), and they put on a hell of a show- very energetic and talented musicians, those guys are. Both pals of ours American Speedway (from PA), and Crank County Daredevils (from Ashville, NC) are always fun to play with. Scotty, the singer from Crank County Daredevils, does a spot-on impression of Brian Johnson from AC/DC.
e: Where do you see the band going?
AC: Hopefully we can continue in the direction that we originally planned to go: forward, haha! Sometimes we hit snags due to families, jobs, other hobbies, etc, but we all have the same goal at the end of the day, and that’s to have fun and to try to play music that people can dig and get into. Sometimes it’s hard considering that we all have blue collar jobs and other lives outside of our rehearsal space, but we just trek on through.
e: Is there anything your fans or future fans should know about The Dielectrics?
AC: Come out to shows and support local music! Even if it’s not The Dielectrics you want to support, just try and support local music and venues. When people complain about not having “any good shows in town” or our “scene sucks,” it’s us and other equally hard-working bands that try to get people to come out and enjoy going shows.