Two years after the release of their debut album, LUCA comes back strong on their sophomore attempt, You’ll Never Be At Peace With This.
Release date: Jan. 26th, 2018
As is the case with many bands, LUCA began in an ostensibly unpresumptuous manner, a group of friends getting together to play music. After a while, the members of LUCA realized they had something special. In 2016, LUCA self-released their debut album When It Comes to You, I Do Things the Hard Way, a raw and energetic first album chalk full of catchy choruses and interesting guitar riffs reminiscient of the post-punk, emo sound of the early 2000s. However, their new album You'll Never Be at Peace With This marks a definitive turn toward the evolution of their sound, and this time around they teamed up with Nathan Hussey of All Get Out , a band signed to Andy Hull's [of Manchestera Orchestra] label Favorite Gentlemen , to mix and master their new album.
Over the course of the last year, I have heard mumblings from various friends about the DIY scene down in Bryan, Texas. Two bands from Bryan, The Ottoman Turks and Odd Folks, have since become Dallas transplants turning my attention down south. LUCA first popped up on my radar a few months ago after hearing their song "Come So Far" on a Bryan/College Station compilation album released by Sinkhole Texas, Inc. - a local record label in Bryan.
Earlier this week, lead singer Josh Willis checked in with me to answer a few questions about LUCA and their new release.
Tell me about the origin of LUCA:
We started playing together in the fall of 2013. At the time we were a four piece and were kind of just hanging out and jamming together to keep ourselves from getting too bored. We realized pretty quickly that we had a good thing going between us and decided to give the whole band thing a shot. Four years later and we're still around when we've seen so many local bands come and go. Feels pretty cool to look back and see the evolution of the band with different members that have come and gone and the songs we wrote from day one that have either dropped off of our rotation or we've completely changed.”
I've heard a lot about the burgeoning DIY scene in Bryan, what do you think is the driving force that fuels the energy in the music community?
The DIY scene in Bryan is so great. We try to get any band we play with form out of town to come here and experience it because every time they end up having a big welcoming crowd and at least one or two people who will buy everything they have to sell. It's just a super welcoming community that loves the arts. It's a small community but it feels huge when everyone crams in a small dive bar to see you play.
Tell me a little bit about Sinkhole Texas Inc.:
Sinkhole Texas Inc. is a local record label here in Bryan formed by members of that DIY scene I talked about. They started it as kind of a way to just help local bands at least have a CD out there for someone to listen to. We would never have gotten to the point that we're at now without them.
How did you come to meet Nathan Hussey and what made you decide to bring him on as the producer of this album?
So this is one of those stories that probably seems so simple that it can't be true but basically I went to see All Get Out in Houston and after the show I went outside and saw Nathan talking to some people so I waited my turn. I knew he worked with some bands in the past but it wasn't like a well-known thing that he did so I just brought up that if he is still doing that kind of work I'd love to talk to him about it. He immediately asked me to email him our demos and stuff and it all just took off from there.
I wanted to work with Nathan because All Get Out has always been a huge influence on my writing from day one. So to get to work with a direct influence seemed like a no brainer to me, and it has truly been the greatest experience. I've learned a ton from him not only on the writing side but also about just what it takes to be a musician. The dude has incredible drive.
Where did the inspiration for the title of the album come from?
So the album title comes out of one of the songs on the album. It more so represents my feelings on the subject matter of every song on the album in one way or another. This whole album at its core is just about moving on from things, self-acceptance, and growth. These are all things that have been big in my life over the past two years and I had this weird feeling one day that even if I move on from whatever it is that I might not ever be at peace with the fact that it happened. That idea really stuck with me, and so after tossing around a bunch of album titles with the guys this one seemed like the best fit.
What would you define as the major differences between this new album and When It Comes to You, I Do Things the Hard Way?
So that album was our first album, a culmination of our work from day one, just a huge milestone for us as a band. I think they are similar in a way but extremely different at the same time.
The first noticeable difference will of course be the quality, working with more professional equipment and a producer etc. has made for a much better final product. I personally feel like this album is much more focused since it was written over a smaller period of time and has all been carefully crafted and chosen for this specific album. I also think you'll hear a band that has been playing together a lot longer than it had been on that first album which might not be a super noticeable difference at first but the chemistry and dynamics in the songs feel much more natural I think because they're literally coming natural at this point.
Do y'all have any plans to tour around regionally and/or nationally with the new album?
I have some touring that I'd like to do with the band but it's becoming increasingly more difficult for us to do those kinds of things. Jeremy, our bass player is married and Ross our drummer is getting married in like two weeks. I'm not married but I have a dog at home and that's basically being married. We also all have full time jobs and all the fun adult stuff that comes along with them so if we do some touring I would guess that it'd be brief. We will definitely be doing weekends around Texas when we can though!
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