A catch up with Frankie and the Witch Fingers

Photo by David Evanko

Photo by David Evanko

It seems that LA is becoming the epicentre for today’s psychedelic rock resurgence, and no band is making greater waves than Frankie and the Witch Fingers (FATW). Having first discovered the ferocious garage rock after the release of their latest album, Brain Telephone, we caught up with the quartet via telecom to discuss their rise and plans for the future.

Hello from across the pond! Have we got the whole band today?

Hi! Yeah, the entirety of FATW is here today (Dylan Sizemore, Josh Menashe, Alex Bulli, and last but not least Shaughnessy Starr).

Rad! Tell us a bit about the early days and the formation of Frankie and the Witch Fingers?

We're four weirdos that would die without making music together. The band started in 2013 in Bloomington, Indiana while we were all making noise in different groups around town, and gradually shifted into all making noise together. At the time Glenn Brigman was on drums, and we were making all the records in his bedroom.

From bedroom band practice to the summer of 2018 playing shows across Europe, how was that experience? 

We love it over there! It's so accommodating and friendly. It was pleasantly surprising how many folks knew about the band, considering it was our first time there as FATW. The real trip was waking up every day in a new country! New language, new food, new world. Really just want to take a second to appreciate how amazing Italy's Autogrills are - If every country had Autogrill, we'd be a lot closer to a perfect world. Generally speaking, touring Europe is much better than touring the States. We'll be back in May, and can't wait to see all our friends again!

It’s been a good year and a bit now since the release of Brain Telephone, how have things changed since the release of that album?

2018 was a transformative year for us. Our drummer Glenn left to focus his creative energy on his main band Triptides, and Shaughnessy Starr joined up right after the European tour. We immediately began writing and recording a new album, and took that new material on a North American tour with Australia's Stonefield in the fall. Our creative process and work ethic has improved a lot this past year, and for us that is the ultimate goal - to get better and better at what we love.

So can we be expecting a new album in 2019?

You can! We’re very excited for everyone to hear our newest album, coming out early 2019. We recorded it at our friend Zachary James's killer home studio, Studio 666 in Silverlake. We put a lot of time and effort into making this an intricate body of work that we're all really proud of.

Tell us a bit about the record.

In the past, we've recorded songs as they are still being fleshed out, and almost used recording as a way to write different parts of the song spontaneously. The process was a lot different this time. For this record we spent a month or so fleshing out all of the song parts, then rehearsing and refining the arrangements. All of the core instruments on this album were recorded live in the same room, which made working on this project especially fun. We worked out and planned every detail as a unit, and doing that really made this record stand out to us. I think we'll always remember this record as a turning point for the band creatively. Also, Harry from Greenway Records has been an absolute pleasure to work with - he's as excited about making vinyl as we are making noise - we feel really lucky to be working with Greenway. 

Keep up to date with Frankie and the Witch Fingers on Facebook here.

Interview by Will Fenton.