Interview by Amy Mullin
NAME OF BAND: 27
How long have you guys been together?
Maria: We had initially recorded some stuff with another drummer, but we didn't really become a touring band until Neil joined the band in 2000 I believe?
How did you meet?
Ayal: Maria & I had both been playing around Boston in other bands, and when those fell to the wayside we started playing together. Our previous bands were pretty heavy & noisy, so initially we didn't really even intend to be a band, we were just trying to play quieter more experimental music than we had in our previous bands. After we'd been playing a while we thought it'd be fun to play some shows, and it just kept going from there...
What are your musical influences?
Maria: George Martin.
Ayal: The Beatles, Black Flag, EPMD, The Police, Prince, all the stuff we grew up with...but we don't consciously bring any of that into our music, just whatever seeps in naturally...
How did you come up with your bands name?
Maria: We're not into numerology or anything like that, but the number 27 seemed to come up in a lot of significant places. It is also Ayal's lucky number. So when it came time to pick a name, we kept referring to the band as 27. We wanted to have a sort of minimalist name for the band, so it just sort of stuck. Plus we figured since it was just a number and not attached to any word, that we wouldn't have any conflicts with any other bands since rarely does anyone use just a number for a name. But we were wrong! When we were starting out we were asked by two or three other bands to change our name because they wanted to use it.
Ayal: But lucky for us we had it first!!
What are your plans for touring this year?
Maria: Hopefully Australia for the first time in June to see kangaroo and promote the release of Let The Light In on Transelectric Records in that country. Then in early fall we'll be heading back to the UK and possibly Europe to promote the record we're are in the midst of recording which will be out on Undergroove Records.
Which band at the moment that has made it big over the last year do you respect the most?
Maria: This might sound corny, but we respect any band that works hard and stays original and true to themselves no matter how big or small they are.
Ayal: Of course we're partial since they're good friends of ours, but we're very happy that Isis has achieved a lot of success over the past year. They're great people and work as hard as anyone we know.
How would you describe your music to people?
Ayal: That's always a tough question...we try to make each song different by using different approaches, textures, samples, etc, but it's Maria's vocals that tie them all together.
Which is the best venue you have played at?
Maria: One of the top five, maybe top three, or maybe even top one would have to be Vera in Groningen, Holland. They have the most amazing sleeping quarters upstairs from the venue. They have several rooms, each is boldly designed by a different artist. And the city itself is just gorgeous and clean. More bikes on the streets than cars.
Ayal: We've been lucky to play lot's of great venues. Couple of my faves are the Reitschule in Bern Switzerland, it's a giant old squat with an amazing restaurant, and I've got a softspot for the Old Angel in Nottingham: had our first show ever in Europe there with Isis and Johnny Truant, it was really a magical moment.
What you do on a 'normal' day?
Maria: Work, write, record, hang out with our cats, talk with our families.
Ayal: day: job. night: music. that is all.
Can you let us in on any secrets as to what the future holds for your band?
Maria: The future holds the secrets.
Check out 27 on their website www.27.vg