Sirs, “Shellshock”

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We can all thank a little DIY imprint by the name of Double Double Wahmmy for putting Purchase, NY on the indie landscape map. From rocking out to LVL UP, Crying, Quarterbacks, and more, one of their latest signees Sirs has been a welcome imposition since they dropped their single “Imposter” on us a few weeks ago. Playing it loud and proud, the Sirs gentlemen gentry of Justin Jurgens, Kyle Seely, Hart Seely, and Mike Caridi masterfully manage to transfer the chaoas, charm, and energy of a live show to tape; as heard here on their debut of “Shellshock”.

Sleepless nights and the excitement of uncertainty are sent through the space echo of “Shellshock”. Justin sings out and spits up the gravel of dreamless evenings and writer's block obliterated by the band's clever timing. The raw elements of Kyle, Hart and Mike's instrumentation and timing are helped out from Hunter Davidsohn's production that keeps the sound stripped down to the bare wires while tied with powerful restraint. As a result, Sirs take you through the stages of shock with measured percussion progressions that end, begin, and burst midway with false stop/start breakdowns. The addictive, frantic and frenetic of the song abides according to it's preordained watch where the time-trickery makes three minutes seem like a mere one minute as well as an inexhaustible ballad that could repeat forever.

The Sirs fourpiece talked to us about formalities versus keeping and kicking it casual, best and worst gigs, and an exclusive peak behind the music, and behind the making of their upcoming cassette for Double Double Whammy.

First, what brought you to settle on the name Sirs?

There's not a great story about how we got our name, it really was as simple as one day Kyle suggested we called ourselves 'Sirs' in a silly accent, and the rest is history. Sorry I can't think of a more interesting anecdote to go along with that, ha.

Are you all more obsessed with formalities? Casual-ities? And why?

I think we're pretty much lumped into the majority of our generation that uses, 'yo dude', or 'hey man' a lot—so I'm gonna say we're pretty casual. Definitely don't call people 'sir' or 'ma'am' on the reg! Sometimes people think they're really clever and will refer to one of us as 'sir', that kinda happens quite a bit hah.

What is the source of this “Shellshock”?

“Shellshock” has a lot to do with making next steps, being unsure of where you're going and what you're doing, and working up the courage to do something completely new and out of the blue while at the same time being stuck in a rut and feeling like you'll never get out of it, and i think that's what the 'shellshock' I'm referring to in this song comes from. Probably one of the hardest parts of going out into the world has been taking that shot in the dark and leaving behind everything that makes you comfortable. Sometimes things don't always work out, but you gotta try right? Also, I think when I wrote these lyrics I was really into watching movies and documentaries about World War One.

<p>Is it anything like sticker shock? Because everything is expensive as hell these days.

Hah, didn't know what this meant at first, but yes everything sucks.

Tell us about the upcoming EP that we've been so juiced on.

We've been hanging onto these songs for a while, some written and played as early as our 2012 summer tour. We wanted to take our time with the recording process this time around though, and really focus on getting a sound that we all felt was more interesting than our previous feedback heavy releases. We recorded this EP with producer Hunter Davidsohn, who also produced our friends Porches. latest record, Slow Dance in the Cosmos, who really pushed us to experiment outside of our comfort zones, and we're super thankful to him for that. 'Shellshock' in particular feels like a good cross over between our full length and this EP – it switches back and forth between super fuzzed out, high energy classic Sirs kinda vibes, into poppy verses where we really tried to experiment with vocal and instrument effects. Before we named it 'Shellshock' we were just calling it 'Space Echo Song' because most of the instruments, including drums, were being run through a vintage analog space echo effect to get some weirdo effects. Also, cool anecdote – all the vocal effects were being manipulated while Justin was in the booth singing, which is why some of the echoes last longer, or cut out short. We're super happy with the product, turned out cool I think!

Describe for us the best Sirs show ever.

We love playing at the school where we started the band, SUNY Purchase. Shows are always wild there, and we feel a lot of love and enthusiasm from the crowd, our good friends always come out so that's super nice too. It's always a really special time when we get to play there, which lately has only been once or twice a year.

Now describe for us the worst Sirs show ever.

Once we played to no one except and old man and his wife in a bar in Carbondale, Illinois, and the whole set this old coot kept yelling at us to 'face our fans', and called us douchebags a bunch.

What is the Sirs game plan for closing out 2013 and ringing in the who-the-fuck-knows-what of 2014?

We've got three amazing cassette release shows planned for November!

Sirs' self-titled cassette EP will be available November 19 with pre-order available from Double Double Whammy.

Their self-titled full length is also available now from Topshelf Records.

Catch Sirs at the following gigs:

22 – Purchase NY – SUNY Purchase with Please, High Pop, and Weird Korea (reunion!)
23 – Brooklyn NY – Shea Stadium with Radical Dads, Shark?, and Porches.
24 – Philadelphia PA – Golden Tea House with Idiot Kid, Glocca Morra, Porches.