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Avan Lava Brings New Flavor To EDM

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Giddy pop rockers Avan Lava are certainly the masters of multitasking. In February, the group released their sophomore Flex Fantasy EP, followed by multiple appearances in both local and national locations. And still, the members of Avan Lava have continued to balance work as producers, composers, and mixers for other bands such as Cold Cave and Fisherspooner. Ian Pai found a little time to chat with Melodysiac about they key to keeping it all together.

Melodysiac: I heard that you self-released your EP Flex Fantasy. What is the best and worst part about self-releasing an album?
Ian Pai: Best part is that you have no one else telling you what to do. Worst part is that you don't have anyone telling you what to do.

You also work for other bands. What difficulties do you find when working with music that is not your own?
It's generally easier. The hardest part of writing music is being objective. When you are producing other people's music, it's much easier to get in that headspace. Maybe the hardest part is getting people to work. Usually by the time they get to the studio, they're so tired of working on their music, all they want to do is hang out.  

Since you are so well versed in the technical side of creating music, do you find that you approach the industry and writing/recording process in a different way?
Absolutely. The more sides we see, the more respect we have for everyone and everything that has to come together to get a song out into the world. Being able to record and mix our own music has been extremely liberating. We're not limited by how much studio time we can afford, or gear that we need to borrow, or by someone else's technical limitations – or imagination for that matter. That's one of the hardest things about not knowing the technical aspects of making a record. You have to find someone who does, who also gets what you're trying to do, and is willing and able to do it for whatever budget you have. Failure on any of those points can lead directly to making a record that you didn't want to make.  

Avan Lava took SXSW 2012. Best part?
Chaos. It's always good for creativity. 

Your live shows have been dubbed ‘high energy’ by many a source. Is the lively factor important for you to get the crowd moving?
Absolutely. We've all spent too much time at shows in the past few years standing around and listening. Listening is great when we're at home, or in the studio, or riding the subway. If we're at a show, we'd rather be dancing!

I read that your band was born during a conversation in Brazil. Do you think that this place of birth shows in your sound?
No, not specifically. But there is something magical about Brazil. We went to some funny clubs there. People there will dance to anything. You could play the Buzzcocks, Britney and Buddy Holly back to back and no one would drop a beat or bat an eyelash.

If you had to describe the Avan Lava sound in three words what would they be?
Laser. Sex. Dance.

If you couldn't make music in New York where would you go?
Vermont. That's where we wrote a good part of Flex Fantasy. Best places to write are where there's absolutely nothing to do. The town we were in shut down at 8 p.m.

What are your touring plans for the upcoming year?
Play as much and in as many places as possible, while still leaving enough room to make each show special.

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Photos Courtesy of Avan Lava


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