Against All Odds; An Interview with Resilient

With other projects falling through and some serious life-altering events occurring, it’s truly amazing just how Philly band Resilient came about.  However, the world works in mysterious ways and this instance is one of those times.  Within the center of the group is an empowerment that each member carries within themselves as they press forward.  With that comes an emotionally driven arrangement of truth and strength.
Resilient latest album How To Peach is an effortless visual of a band that is just beginning to find their sound.  Influences ranging from grunge, punk, and prog-pop, Resilient prefer to not go about creating music in particular style.
Ghettoblaster recently caught up with the members of the band to talk about their inception, the music scene in Philadelphia, the recording of How To Peach, and much more.
I saw that the band recently wrapped up a tour.  What was it like being out on the road?
This tour was a blast.  It just was particularly rough for us health-wise.  Almost all of us ended up sick with something cold/flu-like….and Katie ended up with pneumonia eventually.  So, we were obnoxiously coughing on each other in a small van with very little sleep by the end of it, but we made it happen.  (It’s okay.  We’re on antibiotics now).  The shows, themselves, were fantastic! Alicia and Lennon were on double duty each night playing with us and Burned Out, Still Glowing and did a marvelous job.  We met so many kind people in each city that we certainly hope to see again (bands and enthusiasts alike).  It’s always refreshing to explore other music scenes and see how people support one another.  Portland, Maine is a solid new favorite.
When did it become clear the members of the band wanted to begin playing music?
Erin: “I always felt surrounded by music, so it was impossible to imagine not doing it somehow.  Some of my earliest memories are from my Mother’s gigs with her band.  She’d bring us along when we were little tykes and at that age, she just seemed like a Rockstar to us.  So as soon as I could wrap my hands around an instrument, I followed suit”
Katie: “I took interest in music in elementary school wanting to play trumpet, but I didn’t make the cut so I gave up on that.  I tried playing Violin but didn’t do so well.  When I was about 11, I met my Mother’s friend and drummer, Tom Stokes, in the percussion section at a music store one-day …we played a drum beat together and it sunk in for me that I could do this”
Lennon: “When my guitar hero was murdered on stage”
Alicia: “I dunno…it was always a natural thing for me.  I’ve not played an instrument since 3rd grade and I’ve always needed to play music”
What would say is the state of the music scene over in Philly?
The state of the Philly music scene is ever-blooming.  There’s always a dope new artist to listen to and even when you think you’ve seen it all, there’s another spot you haven’t been yet to check out for a show.  There are lots of venues (not to mention house shows) in different neighborhoods to explore….and there’s always multiple shows going on each night.  The only tough thing about it is choosing which show (or shows) you can make in a night…especially if you’ve got friends in a lot of different bands that you want to see.  It’s still the best big-little place to be for music.
The band came together under unique circumstances as everyone was dealing with various matters.  When did it become clear to everyone that Resilient had to happen?
Resilient just sorta became a band to help a friend’s band fill a bill at a South Philly bar for one night, but we had such a good time….we knew we wanted to keep doing it.  So whenever that was (probably about four years ago now), that was the moment.  We didn’t know what was going to happen, but meeting up for practice each week and just offloading all the stress and bullshit we were carrying around felt like the best thing.
Erin-you had surgery to remove a rare brain tumor in your head a few years back.  Did you find yourself wondering if playing music was never going to happen again?
Yeah.  That was a major concern and very tough to come to terms with.  Brain surgery is no walk in the park and can often go wrong in all kinds of ways (which is why they make you sign the death waiver).  I just prepared for the worst while hoping for the best and luckily only lost a chunk of my eyesight… I’d most definitely rather that than not being able to play music.
With everything that the collective group has had to go through, how does it come through within the music?
The music we make has always been a channeled reaction to what’s going on around us or inside us…and the words just make it more literal.
How long did the recording process for How To Peach take?
How to Peach came along quicker than our last recording.  We rehearsed for it for a few months and also added a new member (Lennon) right when we headed in to record…but this time it only took three months to go from recording to mixing/mastering, which is record time for us.
What were some of the things that the band wanted to achieve while recording the new album?
We wanted to make something that was a bit more well-balanced sonically….and we also wanted to have our first full-length record done in an actual studio environment instead of trying to do everything on our own, but not lose any edge in the process.  Lee McCartney did an excellent job engineering and helping us achieve what we were looking to do.
The band is mostly made of strong women.  Has the band had to deal with sexism? 
Yes.  We all deal with sexism on the regular, be it blatant or subtle…at shows or at work.  It’s unfortunate, but that’s the way of our world and some people still don’t know when they’re being creepy.
What does feel needs to be done in order for women to be more respected within the music scene?
In order for women to be more respected in the music scene, it’s almost as if people need to “become blind” in a sense to truly check their pre-conceived notions and judgments at the door…whether we’re talking about the type of person who assumes that a virtuosic musician (who happens to be female) playing an instrument is shockingly “alright for a chick”….or the almost opposite type of person who acts as if a woman playing music poorly is better than she actually is because there are other motives at play (or they’re just majorly overcompensating).  In either case, no one’s doing said women any favors and the playing field still isn’t level.  At the end of the day, a person wants to be treated like such: a person.  A musician wants to be recognized for their music and their abilities in delivering it.  And we are all just people who play music…no matter the appendage.
When can we expect some new music to come out?  Is the next album in the works?
We have been writing new stuff, but will be taking time in the Winter months to slow down with shows a little to focus more on it.  We hope to get back in the studio soon!
Resilient’s latest How To Peach is out now.
For more on the band: