PISTON READY: pure high energy rock’n’roll from Seattle, USA

PISTON READY is a high energy rock'n'roll band and probably the best live act in Seattle, planning a tour in the West Coast this next August with The Leeches

Hi. Tell us something about the Piston Ready project.
The band was formed in September of 2010, after Lauren and myself met on a sunny summer afternoon while drinking sweet tea vodka. Fueled by a mutual interest forAmerican and Scandinavian high energy rock n’roll bands, we started writing original material, like they used to do in the good ol’ days; with a guitar and a couple of beers. In a few months, we were lucky enough to find the rest of the band’s members among friends (Ocean Ford – bass guitar, Mike O’clock – rhythm guitar and Danny Vondirtbag – drums) and just 4 months later, we played their first show. It became clear that we had something worthwhile after playing just a handful of shows, so we decided it was about time to cut some tracks. We recorded 4 original songs for our 4 song EP, “Westbound and Up” that came out in the spring of 2011 and was well received by both the audience and the press. In the summer of 2013, the band was set to enter the studio and record their first full length album when we lost one guitar player and the drummer at the same time. we decided not to abort the mission and did just what it had to be done; looking among friends again until they found the right people to complete PISTON READY. It took a while but after a couple of failed attempts, we found Mischa and Dana (they also play in another band called Witchburn.) Almost two years after the first time we were finally ready to enter a recording studio which we did last month. We recorded 11 tracks that are going to be released as soon as we found a record label that wants to help us spread our Rock’n’Roll gospel.

Tell us something about your last album.
As I just said, we’ve just finished the tracking session and the songs are now ready to be mixed and mastered. We recorded 11 tracks, 10 of which are going on our first full length and we are hoping to release a 7″ soon ( split with a top secret band) that will include the other unreleased tune plus one that is already on the record or maybe a cover.

How is being in a band from Seattle – USA? What’s the best live act in your area? Tell us something about it.
Well, Seattle is where we live now and to be honest, no one in this band is from Seattle but we like it here. The scene is not in a very good shape lately (a lot of clubs closed in the last year and a lot of good bands suddenly called it quits) but I’m already seeing some improvements. New small clubs are opening, new bands are starting to play out and all the bands that are active in town are ready to put out a new record. Best act in town? Piston Ready of course! Ahahah. Ok I really believe we are among the best bands in town now but if you want some names here’s a list of what we think are the bands that you should check out. Witchburn, Zero Down, Bigfoot Accelerator, Guns of Nevada, The Demolition Kings, The Kamikazies, Torch Burner just to name a few but the list could go on and on forever. There’s something for every taste from metal to punk rock. Take a few minutes to go on line and check em out and maybe you’ll find your new favorite band!

Tell us something about the Seattle music scene? Are you connected to other bands or musical movements in your area?
I don’t believe a united music scene really exists in Seattle. I believe there are several music scenes that somehow coexist peacefully like the metal, the punk rock and the rock & roll scene. Then there’s the rockabilly scene that is really small but very active and there must be an hip hop scene and an “alternative” scene I know nothing about..
There are a few clubs that I’d like to mention that are keeping the fire alive; The Mix, El Corazon and Slim’s Last Chance in Seattle, Darrel’s Tavern in Shoreline and Tony V’s in Everett are the places where you wanna go play (or just attend a good show) and good times are always guaranteed.

Which artists have influenced your style & sound, if any?
We all have different backgrounds but I think we can all agree with four names. The MC5, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Ramones and Black Sabbath. Our sound is a perfect mix of all these bands. The Heart of the Motorcity, The Soul of the South, the Punch of the big apple and the Dark side of the brain of the British countryside. But don’t despair…We like new bands too. Scandinavian scene? Check! Old school California punk rock? Check? Original outlaw country? You bet your ass we do! Classic Heavy Metal? Check… who said rap? Hmm…No thanks.

What’s the last live music show you’ve seen?
We like to support our friends so we try to go to as many local shows as possible. As a band? I think we all together saw Crobot when we opened for them last September (was actually our first show with the new line up) and they were amazing. OH, and Alice Cooper! He’s still the shit!!

Tell us something about your best and your worst memory on the road.
The worst? Easy. We call it “The show that never Happened”. Was a few years ago when we still had Mike and Danny in the band. We booked two shows in the same night (smart I know!) An early one in Tacoma for a motorcycle club where we, let’s just say, could not refuse all the drinks offered to us. And then a second one in town. The second show was at Slim’s and we played with this great band from Frisco called Badstrip. They played a great show. We did not ( Mike was so drunk that fell on the drum kit and the rest of the band wasn’t in good shape either) but luckily no one was there to witness our performance and for once we thanked people for not showing up and, since we knew we sucked so bad, we decided to call that show “The Show that never happened” to remind us what not to do in the future.
The best one? We have plenty of those. Our Shows with Electric Frankenstein were all great. Opening for Nashville Pussy and The Supersuckers was on our bucket list of things to do as a band. Being played on the radio both in town and in Spain was pretty cool too.

Did you plan to have a tour in the next future? Tell us something about it.
We are thinking about it and probably it’s gonna happen once the record is out. For sure we will play some shows this next August with The Leeches for the Northwest leg of their West Coast tour. Nothing is set in stone yet and it needs to be planned really well or you’ll end up losing money.

We know some members of Piston Ready are European. What are the differences in the way you book shows in Europe and in North America? Is there any difference in professionalism, organization etc.?
Well, Yes. Dee is from Pizza Land. Everybody knows that!!! For what I’ve seen on both sides of the pond, nowadays it’s the exact same thing. There are differences for sure. Booking a show and running a club here are serious business. Bands are required to promote their gig and put up a good show or you won’t get paid and you won’t be asked to play again for sure. Only two things I hate about the way shows are put together here. No food for the bands and never ending bills with 5, 6,7 bands where the first band ends up always play for the sound man, the security guys, some of the other bands’ members and their girlfriends. Also the last band, unless it’s a big frikkin name, gets screwed cause by the time they get on stage, most of the crowd already left. No Leoncavallo effect here. Also shows start very early. But if you play well and, after you paid your dues, you start playing good slots and you will always have a good time.

What do you think of Livetrigger.com? Do you think it could be a good tool to facilitate the process of booking and organizing shows? Do you have any suggestions?
Personally I think the idea beyond LiveTrigger is great. Bands got lazy and they think now you can promote shows just by posting an event on FB. WRONG! You still have to be out in the streets, put up posters (and actually make posters that are not horrid ) and be seen at shows. Or contact radio stations (internet radios are good as well). You can summarize all these things with one word; Networking. Livetrigger offers you the first tool that every band, club and booker needs. A network of industry people that are here not just to be seen but to contribute to live music events. Reverbnation started with the same idea but they got greedy and the lust for money replaced the love for music.