Months and months back when we started putting this dream show together. Kristen and I had the brilliant idea to get anyone who could make it from all of the bands playing our night on the 12, give them pizza, give them beer, record the ensuing conversation, and then post what sense we could make of it here. Um, it’s now Tuesday the 11, this hasn’t happened and I don’t think that it ever will. Though it is likely to go down in squaregirl history as one of my least plausible ideas (thanks Kristen for humoring me at least.) Still bound and determined to get an interview with some one in one of the bands before the show, I sat in my office and wondered to myself, “Who is awesome, and likely to be bored enough at work to take part in a completely spontaneous and unprepared interview via AIM?” The answer on both fronts (particularly the former,) is Aaron Kyle of Le Switch. Aaron and I chatted a bit about the formation of the band, Myspace, and per his recommendation I have at least one more record to add to my already quite long list of records I need to own.
SQGM: First of all, I need to thank you (collectively) for being the squaregils first friends on myspace (after me and Kristen.)
AK: Were we? That's neat. Prolly cause I'm on online all day.
SQGM: And your our favorite L.A. band.
AK: Even better!
SQGM: So i think we asked you first, but still...
AK: I pressed that approve button with gusto..Let me tell you
SQGM: That's what we like to hear!
AK: Hahahahaha. I haven't pressed an approve button like that since.
So I'm curious as to how things progressed in the early days, I know it was just you and joe at first.
SQGM: Did you play many shows as a duo?
AK: Yeah we played a bunch, that was how we [were] rolling those days.
I think we played with the monolators as a 2 piece at Mr. T's. That's when they were a 2 piece, lot's of 2's.
SQGM: Oh interesting.
AK: Yeah. It was cool seeing another band that was a two peice, gave us comfort.
SQGM: This was 2005, right? Or before?
AK: Yeah that was 2005, we met in 2004. Joe and I at first didn't really think that we should have this big sound. we were really content on the two piece idea cause then we only had to worry about us, but he was playing on a suitcase drum set with percussion then.
AK: Yeah. We planned for it to be as stripped down as possible, but then Maria came along. she was like, "I play the trumpet and viola." She said that could could fill out bass stuff on the viola
so we stuck with it for like 7 or months, 7 or 8.
SQGM: With the duo thing, or as a three- piece?
AK: 3 piece, we were only a duo for like 5 months, end of 2005 into 2006. When we got together in NY he played a full kit and we stuck with that cause it was a lot bigger. Haven't gone back to the suitcase since. although I do love it.
SQGM: I can't imagine that it would be quite as condusive to what you guys are doing now, but yeah, I bet that sounded pretty cool. Any recordings from those days?
AK: ummm. Yeah there's an entire record Joe and I did with our friend Laura right before I went on tour across the country - solo. It's just an Aaron Kyle record, but some switch songs on there in their beginnings.
SQGM: I think that I've heard tale of this record...
AK: Hahahahaha. Possibly, I have a handful of copies.
SQGM: So once you went into three piece territory w/ maria was it just a case of "well we might as well add keyboards, and and a full time bass player" ?
AK: Sorda, yeah. I think we got a little tired of it sounding so thin. We asked Chris to come play with us for a few shows. See how it went. It was just kind of like..Let's get bass player,
but Chris isn't a bass player. He's a guitar player in disguise. He's a better guitarist than anyone I know.
SQGM: I hate to admit it, but i've never noticed whether or not he plays guitar on any of your live songs, or if it is just him on bass, you on guitar?
AK: Chris plays bass live all the time.
SQGM: Okay, that's what i thought. have you ever entertained the idea of trading instruments during the show? Do you play bass at all?
AK:I can play bass, but it'd be hard to play his basslines and sing. He pretty much makes it so no one can play his stuff. Hehehe.
SQGM: So the guitar talents of Christopher Harrison will remain hidden to Le Switch fans?
AK: Maybe on the new record you'll hear some Chris on guitar.
SQGM: Ooh something to look forward to. Are you recording another ep, or a full length?
AK: A full length, 10 songs.
SQGM: Oh nice.
SQGM: Was the next record always going to be a full length or did that change once you got the label behind you?
Le Switch recently signed with local label, Autumn Tone Records.
SQGM: Congratulations on that by the way.
AK: We actually changed it when we started recording. We had 7 (songs,) and we were like it's only 3 more for a full length. Sooo, I had a new song. We had an old song that we never play live, and josh had a song that I really liked. So we decided, why not make it a full length?
SQGM: Sounds like a good plan. On that note, one thing that is really intriguing to me about your band is that you list "bands we like" under the influences section on Myspace. I find that alot of bands list so many bands as "influences" then don't sound as interesting as any of them yet, I hear some element of most of the "bands you like" in Le Switch. But it all works together as something different. Sorry for the long lead in on that one, but that is something that has always been fascinating to me about you guys. And having said that, any new stylistic directions that we can listen out for on the new record?
AK: Hahahaha. Ummm, that's cool. We all love music soo much, we're really just music music geeks that love to play music too. As far as they changing on this new record, I think people can expect things to be more orchestrated. On our last recording...it was everything you heard live was how you hear it on the recording, this one will be the same just with a little [more] ummmph.
SQGM: Ooh very nice. Yeah the music geeks that play music too thing really comes across for your band. Which i think is good. I can't honestly say that iI trust musicians who say they don't listen to that much music. I find that slightly confusing.
AK: Yeah. I always think that's weird too. Like most of my fave local bands have great tastes in music and love all kinds of music
SQGM: Who are some of your favorite local bands?
AK:Well, I have a lot.
SQGM: Okay, top 3 then?
AK: Too hard. Cause I like so many for so many different reasons. The Broken West, Division Day, Tandemoro, The Henry Clay People, The Parson Redheads, I Make This Sound... I could go on and On..but I think these bands are some of the best.
SQGM: Okay, now I'll ask an even harder question. Favorite record released in the 1960s?
AK: In the 1960's huh?
SQGM: Or the 1970s You pick.
AK: I only get to pick one?
SQGM: Okay both.
AK: That's too hard. The 70's I'd have to go with all time favorite is, Donny Hathaway – Live. That album changed my life.
SQGM: Oh cool. I have a 45 of Donny Hathaway and Roberta Flack covering "You've Got a Friend.” It's pretty great.
AK: That song is pretty sick live, he does a cover of jealous friend live too.
SQGM: Is it both of them performing it?
AK: Just him and his band at the troubadour in LA in 1071, 1971. Hahaha, 1071. He's really old... He knew Jesus.
SQGM: I bet the troubadour was quite different in 1071. I imagine it was an outdoor venue then?
AK: Yeah, totally, lots of stoneware --- Maria joke.
SQGM: Well, I will certainly have to add that to my list of albums to pick up. You know, you could actually choose your favorite record from each decade from the 60s up until the present day. I'd be happy to print that.
AK: Revolver by the Beatles in the 60's.
SQGM: Good one.
AK: 80's - Out of Step - Minor Threat
SQGM: Were you in a hardcore band when you were a teenager?
AK: Maybe… The growl comes from somewhere.
AK: 90's - There's Nothing Wrong With Love - Built To Spill. They changed my life in high school. I thought everything was punk rock up until I heard Built to Spill, and Sebadoh. First indie rock show I ever saw, was Sebadoh - during Harmacy at the El Rey. They blew my mind. Dino Jr's is a runner up for the 90's.
SQGM: And it's funny, that kind of sounds like the story from [Sebadoh song] "Gimme Indie Rock."
AK: I just stepped out of the, "Our Band Could be Your Life" book.
SQGM: Oh you mean you just read it?
AK: No, I meant it sounds like I just read it and stepped out of it.
SQGM: Yeah, it really does.
This led to a brief tangent about the possibility of any new movements like the ones covered in that book occuring, and then we had to carry on with the rest of our respective days. However, movement or no, I think Le Switch are a band that people will be talking about for years to come. They may even change a few lives along the way...
Le Switch are headlining our Squargirls night Wednesday December 12 at the Scene Bar in Glendale, and I don't think that it is possible for us to be any more excited about this fact. You can be on the look out for a guest DJ set from Mr. Aaron Kyle at a future Squaregirls night. And also be on the look out for the very first Le Switch full length record in April or May of 2008, which will be released through Autumn Tone Records! It will feature my favorite Le Switch song, “Pristine!" Hopefully if you've ever caught their live show you understand my excitement behind that one. In the meantime, you can download the song "Tounge Tied" from their EP Hello Today, which they self released earlier this year.