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The Pains of Being Pure of Art 

The Pains of Being Pure At Heart:

Exclusive interview with Evan Chase 

group shot

The Pains of Being Pure At Heart are really, really great. Groove is in their indie shoegaze-y art. 

I had the chance to sit down with Peggy, Kip and Alex at Schuba's in Chicago during their nine-city US tour. 

Here’s what they had to say about their rave Pitchforkmedia.com review, the joys of creativity 
and where they got their amazing band name and Kurt Cobain’s "Cardigan.

On The Pitchforkmedia.com review:


Kip: It was a wonderful thing. I think the things that still matter in the Internet Age, touring and playing for people and putting on a good show---all the things that seem 100% old school. I think that’s a good thing; it makes bands work for their dinner. You have to earn people’s acceptance and it’s not just handed to you.  

Peggy: It’s cool to receive accolades from the indie community. I think a lot of people heard us for the first time after reading the Pitchfork review.  

Where The Pains of Being Pure of Heart Name Came From:

A friend wrote a children’s story called "The Pains of Being Pure At Heart" and its moral, as all children’s stories have morals, that the time you spend when you’re young traveling with friends and the friendships that you forge at that time of your life are really to be valued and celebrated. It’s a nice way of thinking about our band---we’re all friends and young and we have these adventures getting to go places and play music together. It’s a pretty fitting name. The phrase feels really right.  

Artistic intentions/Comparisons to My Bloody Valentine and The Smiths

Kip: It’s always flattering when people draw comparisons to our music to such incredible artists as Morrissey or My Bloody Valentine, but our music is more about us and a natural outgrowth of who we are as people and who we are when we plug in our instruments and play that’s us. We have a huge respect for a huge canon of music through the past, but we’re pretty happy being The Pains of Being Pure At Heart. If people want to draw comparisons to bands that are a lot better than us, that’s fine, but we’re happy to be our own world. 

On The Pains of Being Pure At Heart cd 

Kip: We wanted to capture that and document that so these songs lived in a permanent way. To have that final product sound like and not be something we’re not. It was a very natural-sounding record. 

The Pains of Composition process 

Alex: Kip writes the songs and brings them to everyone. 

Kip: Behind every great writer is a great editor. I think creativity is over-valued in our society. Being creative is a wonderful thing, but being able to pick-and-choose. But if it was just me there’d probably be thirty songs on the album and twenty wouldn’t be that good. 

Peggy: We also get a lot of ideas from just hanging out. Inside jokes and stuff. Like Kurt Cobain’s "Cardigan."

Inspiration for Kurt Cobain’s "Cardigan" 7” single 

Kip: All of our experiences and our friends’ experiences, they’re (the songs) very much about our collective experiences, shared experiences. 
The title’s almost a reference to what the song sounds like. The song sounds a lot like the Vaselines. My introduction to The Vaselines was through Nirvana’s covering of them and Kurt Cobain’s championing of these smaller indie-pop bands that would’ve never gotten mainstream of any attention in the U.S. He took the time to use his celebrity to further other bands and offer listenership. The song isn’t about Kurt Cobain but the song wouldn’t have existed were it not for Kurt Cobain. 

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