Initially just a side project, Some Kind Of Animal has grown to seize the music world with their dark and dreamy songs.
This Pittsburgh, PA-based band finds solace in misery. Comprised of Anthony Jardine (vocals/guitar/keys), Tim Mulhern (vocals/guitar), Tony Tortella (bass) and Dave Rocco (drums) their music is a trip through a grimy world.
These songs make your heart fall into your stomach.
“A lot of the songs on this record, and I imagine the next record, kind of take the listener on this dark journey, where they may not entirely feel great about life after listening,” Jardine tells BTRtoday.
Their self-titled album came out last year on Get Hip. With tracks like “Love When I’m Dead,” “Been Down This Road” and “Just Lonely” the album perfectly accompanies anybody going through heartbreak, tragedy or just feeling downright rough.
Catch Some Kind Of Animal at Get Hip’s SXSW showcase and read the entire interview with Jardine below.
BTRtoday (BTR): How did you all meet and decide to form Some Kind of Animal?
Anthony Jardine (AJ): We all met through the music scene; a game of telephone if you will. Tim and I were both pursuing different projects and Tim recorded my old band, which he later became a member, from there we started writing some dark shit after finding solace in misery.
Dave and I played together through high school and pursued our pipe dream and stuck with it despite our becoming rich and famous. Tony (not to be confused with me, Anthony) was always in and out of the music scene in different friends’ bands, and when we were in need of a bass player who has some pipes he was delivered to us on our doorstep. We took him in and he’s helped groom the band with his vibe.
BTR: Where did the band name come from?
AJ: For a while there many bands were trying to creatively use the name of an animal when thinking of band names—hipster shit. So, we figured the name Some Kind of Animal would meet that criteria to fit in with the cool kids.
BTR: How would you describe your band’s vibe in one word?
BTR: Tell me about your self-titled album, is there a common theme throughout it?
AJ: Not necessarily, it’s quite difficult to write anything too happy or uplifting, so we usually take a more dismal and thought-provoking route. The songs on this last record consist of fiction, experience or philosophical elements coinciding with an anxiety to it. A lot of the songs on this record, and I imagine the next record, kind of take the listener on this dark journey, where they may not entirely feel great about life after listening. [Laughs]
BTR: Anything in particular inspire some of the lyrics?
AJ: We enjoy some metaphors and lyrical ballads—perhaps an F bomb here or there. I’ve always been a huge Walt Whitman fan and his ability to use the current state of mind through juxtaposition of what’s actually going on around us. I’ve also always been a literature nerd, so I enjoy honing my writing through the influences of nearly every era of literature.
BTR: What’s your favorite track on it and why?
AJ: Every new song is my favorite track until I hate it the next day. [Laughs] Each song on the record has its moment. I don’t often just listen to the record for listening sake, rather I critique a lot of it, but it always helps for writing new material. It’s always tough to ask an artist this question because when I think about writing a song, I don’t think of it as being mine—it’s for others to pick apart and indulge.
BTR: When did you start playing music?
AJ: Twenty four years ago. My old man had a guitar sitting in the corner of his bedroom that consisted of three rusty strings. I’m not sure tetanus crossed his mind as I bloodied my little fingers trying to make sound, but that’s where I first discovered and learned to appreciate music.
BTR: How did you end up with this kind of folk/psych sound?
AJ: I’m not really sure, I suppose, as it is with every band, you throw all of your influences into a blender and despite it having that vomit hue it actually tastes delicious. Or something like that.
BTR: Who are some musicians you guys are currently spinning on repeat in your life?
AJ: I would say Elliott Smith is one of our favorites. Some others would be Jeff Buckley, Radiohead, Margot & the Nuclear So and So’s, Sigur Ros and older soul stuff.
BTR: What should we keep an eye out for in the future of Some Kind of Animal?
AJ: Right now we’re both stoked and honored to be apart of SXSW with the Get Hip crew, and our manager Mike has been working like a dog to land us two official showcases. As of now we have four shows down in Austin, and we are in the process of writing and recording our second record in Indianapolis with producer Tyler Watkins of Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s. As most people know the music industry is a fickle beast, but we plan on plugging away and seizing every opportunity we can in order to get our music out there.