SXSW Spotlight: Robbers On High Street

If you’ve been going to shows in New York City, you KNOW Robbers on High Street. The indie rock sextet has been selling out venues throughout the city and is ready to release their highly anticipated forthcoming album Hey There Golden Hair. First, they visit Austin for SXSW. Frontman Ben Trokan took a few minutes to answer some of our questions. Enjoy them below:

Robbers on High Street has been performing publicly for almost 10 years now. How do you think you have evolved through out the decade? What’s something the 2001 version of yourself would tell the 2011 version?

Ben: It’ll be 10 years next year. That’s nuts, I never thought about that. You think we’d have some more records out. To me it feels more like 2 different bands, the band as we were before we released Grand Animals in ’07 and the one after. It’s a better band now and it’s definitely a lot more fun.

As far as 2001 Ben, he really wouldn’t have shit to say. If anything I’d rather have 2011 Ben tell 2001 Ben stuff like don’t eat that tuna sandwich in the green room at Carson Daly, buy that van from Major World in Queens even though the salesman will slap you on the ass, and say no to that Beatles festival in Louisville unless you want to have an olfactory sensation of smoked turkey leg every time you hear “Anytime At All.”

Your new album Hey There Golden Hair is your first full length since 2007. How did you prepare differently for this record?

Ben: The preparation was about the same, I’d make demos and we’d practice them live, but the recording process was different. We bought a 16 track and stayed on tape the whole time which has some great limitations to work with and you get some interesting end results – mono drums, four dudes singing back ups around one mic, etc. And mixing was literally very hands on, it was like a performance in itself which is so much nicer than a bunch of dudes sitting around one guy on a computer.

Your songs have been featured on several different movie soundtracks. If someone were to make a movie about the band, who would you want on your soundtrack?

Ben: Is this a cleverly disguised what are your influences question?
Grassroots, Flop, The Action, Buzzcocks, Pretty Things, Kinks, 20/20s, Music Machine, ELO, Five Day Week Straw People, Thin Lizzy, The Eyes.

At SXSW, every band plays tons of showcases, some that even have a wild mix of different genres. If you were to put on your own SXSW, who would you want to play it?

Ben: Charles Bradley, Dungen, The Bees and I’d go big too. Get some ridiculous sponsor money and try and work out a Jam reunion. C’mon guys get over yourselves and do it already!

Free “Electric Eye” MP3

Catch Robbers on High Street at SXSW:

Wed Mar 16: Official SXSW Showcase @ Momo’s 11PM

Thurs Mar 17: Trumer Pills Afternoon Social @ Klub Krucial 12:45PM

Thurs Mar 17: .MUSIC Presents Texas Tornado Showcase @ Rusty Spurs 2:30PM

Fri Mar 18: Come To Mecca Party @ ROIAL Midnight

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