Pr0files JT press71

Interview: Pr0files – New Album, SXSW Trip, & More

Longtime pals Lauren Pardini and Danny Sternbaum originally collaborated on music under the moniker The Boy Traveler, alongside Sonny Moore (who’d later to go on to be known as Skrillex). After going on to create music separately – Lauren working with DJ Khalil, Danny with his band Baby Monster – it wasn’t until 2013 that they came together to once again write and record songs.

Thus birthing the project known as Pr0files who, “write songs about sex addiction, hypnotherapy and love.” If that description isn’t enough to keep you reading, we don’t know what is. They just released their debut Jurassic Technologie in February, and we’re excited to have the duo joining our TuneCore Showcase Day Party on Friday, March 18th at Vulcan Gas Co.

 

Danny and Lauren were kind enough to answer some questions for us regarding the collaboration, their new album, and their plans for 2016 after SXSW:

How did the two of you meet, and when/how did you click musically?

Lauren:  We can’t exactly pinpoint it, but we think we met in New York first when I was in college working at a recording studio. Friends of Danny were making a record there and we’re sure we met then; but we finally gelled when that band came out to LA and it just so happend we were both living there. Danny was running a recording studio, and we both loved Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode. He’d practice learning to record on me when I played piano and sing! We literally grew up together in our music technique, it’s pretty wild.

Danny: Lauren often reminds me that I may have been dressed up as a dinosaur when we first hung out in LA. Don’t worry, it was Halloween.

After the departure from The Boy Traveler, you each went on to maintain successful music careers in different areas. What was the energy like when you began making music together again?

Lauren: It was so refreshing when we started working together again because we were always into electronica, and working with other people you don’t always end up working on your choice style of music. Danny was fresh off of touring Europe so he was really driven to get our project going because he wanted more of the same in his life.

Danny: After The Boy Traveler project came to an end I started a band called Baby Monster with another friend of mine. I had been doing a lot of studio work at the time, engineering, writing and producing for other artists, but being in that band really helped shift my focus to working on my own music. With Baby Monster I learned a lot about being an independent band. All of this really helps with Pr0files since we do virtually everything ourselves. We started Pr0files knowing just how much we could do on our own, which was – and still is – exciting and liberating for us.

Do you feel that after being apart musically in between the two projects gave you each a chance to collaborate in a whole new way? 

Lauren:Absolutely!

Danny: Yes, definitely! We were already fans of each other’s music so we went into this with the idea of just making some music together for fun and seeing what comes of it.

How do you use living in LA to influence or impact your songwriting and production styles?

Lauren: I truly believe that our music fares well in a car. I am ALWAYS in my car in LA, ha. Our studio is in downtown LA and it’s one of the coolest driving cities because there are a lot of hills and the freeways wind in and out of skyscrapers and mansions. I listen to our mixes and demos often at 1:00am on the ride home and the lights and the eerie emptiness LA nightlife has to offer really inspires me. I want our stuff to sound like driving in a video game or a movie and I do think our production goes there.

Danny: LA is such a multi-dimensional city with a lot contrasting elements, one obvious one being the beautiful weather with the grittiness of the city. I think our music reflects a lot of these contrasts.

Speaking of LA: as musicians, what do you consider to be some of the pros and cons of living in such entertainment-soaked city?

Danny: I moved to Los Angeles a week after I finished high school, so it’s hard for me to imagine what it would be like doing this anywhere else. One thing that is a pro as well as con is that it’s really easy to be seen and heard in this city. Many artists and musicians don’t get enough of a chance to develop their own identity before getting music industry people involved.

Lauren: It’s mostly pros. It’s definitely soaked, but it’s also a small world once you’re in it. I grew up in Philly and it’s much more difficult to get your music going there. Once I moved here, meeting the right people was so easy and meeting other people who love music as much as I do is a dream. I honestly, can’t think of any cons.

You’ve been accused of evoking happy and sad feelings simultaneously by more than one critic. Did this anecdote come as a surprise, or was it something you were going for? 

Lauren: Yes, we always say- we make “depression or disco.” I love to dance so even when I’m upset I make myself push through and socialize. I remember reading a quote once that said something along the lines that the point of life is to not to feel happy or sad, but to feel. That’s our whole mentality in this band.

Danny: Hah! I think that describes our music perfectly. Isn’t that what life is all about? It’s the contrasting emotions that keeps it all exciting.

What has gone into developing and mastering the right kind of live performance as a duo with so much sound?

Lauren: We spend a lot of time honing the live show. We want it to be theatrical with lighting and the set while incorporating our music talents which takes a lot of planning since we’re a DJ hybrid set-up. Danny designed all of our lights and then we remix the tracks for live too so we can play keyboards, guitars,bass and drums ourselves on a lot of it.

Danny: For us, the live show is just as important as the music. We try to create our own world and bring the audience there as well. There’s quite a theatrical element to it, lots of lights, fog, weird stuff. We’ve looked to some of our favorite bands for inspiration such as The Knife and NIN.

How do you plan to take advantage of all the opportunities abound during your debut SXSW as Pr0files? How can you draw on previous experiences with other music projects you’ve traveled there with?

Danny: So much incredible music happening this year and excited to try and see as much as we possibly can. Also l’m really looking forward to hearing Tony Visconti speak. I’m a fan of so many of the records he’s produced.

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The cover art for your debut full length Jurassic Technologie is awesome. Where did the name come from, and how do you feel the art represents you as a duo?

Lauren:  We named the album after “The Museum of Jurassic Technology” in Culver City. It’s a museum of oddities that is filled with some of the the weirdest stuff I’ve ever seen. I went there on an epic date with my muse for the album and Danny went there with a friend.

In the end, my muse and I ended our relationship and Danny’s friend sadly passed away. We had the title for the album before we started making it, so it definitely ties into the whole happy-sad vibe for us. We both had great memories there and both of the people we experienced it with are no longer in our lives. We changed the “Technology” spelling to “Technologie” in an homage to our favorite French Touch bands like Daft Punk, Air & Justice.

Danny: We wanted the “Jurassic Technologie” cover art to reflect this modern  – mixed with 70s/80s –  sound of our record. We had this album title chosen long before we had even written a lot of the music on this record. I think it helped guide us in the overall sound and direction of the album in terms of having the classic feel paired with a modern approach.

What are your plans for riding the momentum of Jurassic Technologie’s release into the rest of 2016?

Lauren: We plan to tour. Getting lots of fans hitting us up everyday asking when we’re coming to them. It’s our number one priority.

Danny: Yes! Definitely touring and trying to get in front of as many people as we can. It already feels amazing to us just knowing that people are listening to and enjoying this record.