Six Points Interview: The Jaguar Club

The Jaguar Club is a 3-piece indie rock band from Brooklyn. They are heavily influenced by the college radio music of the 80's and Brit Pop. Mixing the sounds of bands like Echo and the Bunnymen, New Order, Joy Division, Pulp, Talking Heads, R.E.M. and The Smiths, they make highly danceable music that takes a little from all of those bands. Since I am one of the few people in the region who is familiar with them and they are playing DC9 for Six Points Music Festival on Thursday night, I caught up with them and asked them to introduce themselves to the music fans of the area. Will and Jeremiah were nice enough to talk to me and our conversation follows.

Right now, Six Points Music Festival is all of the rage in DC. Due to your involvement, your name has been around town and hardly anybody knows you. I've actually had several people ask me, "What is this Jaguar Club of which you speak?" Take a minute and introduce your band to DC.

Will: We're from Brooklyn, New York, though none of us are natives. We are a three-piece comprised of Yoi on bass, Jeremiah on drums/backing vocals and myself on guitar and lead vocals. We pride ourselves on our live shows, which hopefully isn't setting us up to have pie on our faces Thursday night. Personally, I think that performing is just about the best thing in the world. Recording is something that I find incredibly painful. Basically, we do what we want to do on stage and we’re fortunate that other people think we're onto something good.

How would you describe your sound?

Will: If I had my way, we'd sound like Bob Dylan fronting Blondie.

Jeremiah: That's pretty good.

W: But somehow we end up sounding like New Order and The Smiths.

J: Well, that's what I'm going for. So…

W: Cool. Fine, you win. I hate you.

J: Cool.

You've actually played DC quit a lot lately. I believe that this will be the third time since early March. How did you get involved with Six Points and is this a trend that we should expect to continue?

J: A friend of ours is from DC and thought that we'd be a good fit at Six Points and we're trying hard to…

(Will Interrupts)

W: Let me field this one. There's something about the DC music scene that's really appealing to us. All the bands seem to know one another, and go to shows, and they just seem to be supportive of each other, which is a nice change to what we're used to in New York. Obviously there are a lot of pluses to being a band in New York, but a real "scene" isn't one of them. So, yes… we will be back as often as DC will have us. We really feel comfortable playing there.

You were in DC a couple of weeks ago to release your new EP. Considering that you haven't formally been a band for a year yet and you already have 2 CDs out, how do you feel that you have grown in that time?

W: Well at least half that year was spent trying to figure out how to be a three piece and not a quartet. We've actually been playing together for more like a year and a half and I used to only sing, but then our guitar player quit - about this time last year actually. So there were a lot of depressing times and a lot of uncertainty, but we toughed it out and now it's starting to feel like we've really come into our own as a live band.

J: I agree, I think that the songs were basically always there. The first EP we recorded on our own with nothing really, just a four track in our practice space. So with this new release, I think we wanted to show what we could do with a little more polished production.

Given the pace that you have been going at, when should we expect another release, July?

W: We're going to be releasing a 7"single with "World Gone By" and a slightly different version of "The Sirens" on it, but we aren't really planning on releasing anything new for the time being. We need to work this one for a while, I think. Part of the reason that we put out a 2nd EP so quickly, was that we kept hearing "your CD doesn't do your live sound justice." Which makes sense, since that one was recorded before we ever played a show.

J: We've definitely got the material for a full length; it's just that so few people have heard what's out already. So, we're going to try and get this release out to more people and in the meantime, we're always writing new songs and debuting them live.

Do you have anything else that you would like to share with the fine citizens of the district?

W: I love that the crowds in DC dance. You don't get that everywhere and it makes a huge difference for us and our energy on stage. We're not just a band for dancing, but that's certainly a big part of the equation. So continue dancing DC. We love it and we'll see you at DC9 on Thursday night.

Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. It is always a pleasure.

W: Anytime, sir. Thank you.

I'll leave you with a couple of songs. If you are intrigued, check out the show on Thursday and pick up a copy of their wonderful EP.

World Gone By
Beautiful House