Becky Kessler (Violent Mae) on Kid

(Photo by Kenell Turner)
Kid is the sophomore release from Connecticut-based duo Violent Mae. Rising out of Becky Kessler ’s guitar driven songwriting and multi-instrumentalist Floyd Kellogg ’s production style, the record is a document of a band coming into its own. The duo defies expectations by creating a dynamic fuzzy low-rock sound.
Violent Mae was never intended to be a band. Becky asked Floyd to record and produce her first solo album, and as soon as they hit the studio, chemistry and dynamics between the two sparked the evolution of an artistic partnership. The self-titled debut initially released in 2013 garnered national attention and was re-released early in 2015 when it hit college radio riding a wave into the Top 100 for 6 weeks on the CMJ Radio chart.
Ghettoblaster recently caught up with Kessler to discuss Kid, which drops via Telegraph Recording Company on November 20.
When did you begin writing the material for Kid?  
I wrote most of the songs for Kid while we were recording our first self titled album. It’s interesting because the first one grew out of North Carolina and Kid is all Connecticut based except for the title track. I wrote the bones of the song “Kid” when I was 17 in North Carolina.
Which of the songs on the LP is most different from your original concept for the song?
Probably “Flame” although I didn’t really have a clear concept when I was writing it. Floyd asked me to try a different vocal approach which I think made the tune happen stylistically, for us.
“Birthday” is such a sad song. What’s the story behind the lyrics?
“Birthday” is the most intimate track on the record for me.. It’s about growing up and finding out you have the same needs, challenges and fears as an adult that you had as a kid, like you never really grow up or out of it. And sometimes hard times make you weaker, not stronger. there’s this lyric.. You’re all grown up for years now, it hasn’t killed you yet, but it’s made you weaker.
We hear a lot of PJ Harvey and a little bit of Nick Cave in your music. Are they influences of yours? Who are some your influences?
They are not actually, but I dig both of them, so that’s cool you hear that. Floyd and I share Morphine as a major influence. He’s way into Soul Coughing and Talking Heads. The biggest one for me is probably Jeff Buckley, because both his singing and guitar style influenced me a lot.
Do you have any plans to tour outside of your release show this winter?
Totally. We haven’t solidified anything yet, but that’s next on our to do list.
(Visit the band here:
Catch them live here:
11.21 • Lyric Hall (New Haven, CT Release Show))