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Interview: Paper Thick Walls

Paper Thick Walls won our most recent poll and they are celebrating the release of their debut album tomorrow night at The Hideout. I thought it would be the perfect time to ask them a few question. You can read my interview with Kate Schell and Eric Michaels of Paper Thick Walls here.


Interview with Paper Thick Walls

- by Jason Behrends

Paper Thick Walls are currently our band of the month, and the are celebrating the release of their debut album A Thousand Novels tomorrow night, May 6th, at The Hideout. Kate and Eric from the were kind enough to answer a few of our questions. Kate Schell (piano, trumpet, vocals) and Eric Michaels (guitar vocals), the writers for Paper Thick Walls, met in college at Loyola University Chicago where they discovered that they shared a mutual producer for separate projects. They became really great friends and started to write together in 2008. Two years later the band became what is now the fivesome unit of Paper Thick Walls. Andrew Sabo (drummer) grew up with Eric in Portage, IN and has been playing music with him for a decade. Jacques Rene (mandolin, violin, guitar) played in a band with Eric previously and we loved the orchestral work he put forth in that group, so we asked him to join PTW. Kate also met Jacques in college where they wrote music for fun occasionally. She knew he'd be the perfect addition to this band. Roger Sherman is a very talented musician in the city of Chicago where he has played in numerous blue grass type bands. We literally just called him up and gave him a rough cut of our work. He fell in love with what is now 'A Thousand Novels' and has been playing music with us for about a year. We all love each other.

Deli: Where did the band name come from?

Paper Thick Walls (PTW): We came up with the name chillin in a hot tub and hearing arguments In the next room. Someone made a comment that the walls are paper thick. Ergo paper thick walls

Deli: What are your biggest musical influences?

PTW: Influences: Sufjan Stevens, Arcade Fire, Tori Amos, Catpower, Radiohead, Damien Rice, The National, The Beatles (honestly, who can't say the Beatles are an influence?)

Deli: What artists (local, national and/or international) are you currently listening to?

PTW: Bigger artists, currently listening to The National, Tallest Man on Earth, Bon Iver, MGMT. Local bands: Derek Nelson and the Musicians, Dastardly, Jon Drake and the Shakes, The Damn Choir.

Deli: First album/concert?

PTW: Kate's first concert: Billy Joel/Elton John back in Detroit about ten years ago. Her first album bought: Kate Bush 'Hounds of Love' . Eric-I think the first concert I ever attended was the band YES with my dad. It was unbelievable. The level of musicianship those guys have blows me to smithers. I love YES. I can't remember the first album I bought, but I think it had to be the "Beatles 1s."

Deli: What do you love about Chicago?

PTW: Kate- Chicago is a beautiful, clean city with cool architecture. I love Lake Michigan, beaches, boats, fireworks, July Air, water shows, the museums, the pizza, and all the art and culture the city has to offer. Eric - I love the artwalk along the beach in Rogers Park. Each neighborhood has a such a unique vibe to it that makes a Friday night out worth talking about the next morning.

Deli: What, if anything, do you hate about it?

PTW: Kate - What I dislike about Chicago: Traffic and the Blackhawks. - Eric disagrees with this, he loves the Blackhawks.

Deli: What are your plans for 2011?

PTW: Plans for 2011: Releasing our freshman album 'A Thousand Novels' on May 6th at the Hideout here in Chicago! Also touring with the band, playing 150+ shows, making great memories, and working our butts off to become signed artists.

Deli: What was your most memorable live show?

PTW: Kate - As of now, I'd have to say that our most memorable live show was when we played CMJ Music Festival in New York City 2010. It was our first show with Jacques! And the chemistry on stage between us all was undeniable and has been effortlessly maintained since. Eric -I really enjoyed one night we had at Duke's in Rogers park. It's a small neighborhood bar but it was just packed full of our friends and everyone was singing and dancing and clapping and it made me all warm inside.

Deli: Can you name a few other local bands you feel particularly close to on an artistic level?

PTW:I guess we are playing in a similar genre of music as Derek Nelson, Jon Drake and the Shakes, The Damn Choir, and the Loneliest Monk. We've bounced musical ideas off of The Damn Choir, and have recently become really great musical friends. We are also really into Derek Nelson and very excited to have him open our CD release show May 6th.

Deli: What's your favorite thing to get at the deli?

PTW:My daily dose of ham, Gaga gossip and a banner for Chicago's artist of the month!






Paper Thick Walls
A Thousand Novels



Company of Thieves "Queen of Hearts"

As we have mentioned Company of Thieves will be releasing their next album, Running From a Gamble, on May 17th. The band just released a great acoustic video for the track "Queen of Hearts".


Sarah Weis: Musik & Plus Cassette Listening Party

Stretch your mind so open and step into the mystical world of Sarah Weis. The latest release from the local cassette label Plustapes is the far reaching and career encompassing effort from Sarah Weis. Musik & Plus is a 25-song collection of the best moments and sounds from this adventurous musician, actress, and just all around creative person. This is infact is her debut album, but this songs and images have been circling our consciousness for years.

The cassette will be released in June, but Sarah is holding a virtual listening party on May 10th at 6:30. She will be playing the new cassette on her Fisher Price tape player. Join the party here.


The Part Five @ Empty Bottle

The Part Five have a new single out called "C-Clamp". It comes from their new full-length release called The Tightening. The track reminds me a little of early New Order, but with a little more rock and a little less of the '80's cheesy. I love how this tracks breaks down around the 2 minute mark and then comes back full force.

The Part Five will be performing at The Empty Bottle on May 15th with Dozens. Tickets are only $3 and the shows starts at 7pm.


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