The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Interview Josh Jones
Photography Dan Wilton
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart are right up there with the friendliest band you could ever stumble across. And stumble across them we did at SXSW (we were actually stumbling – they’ve been friends with ‘SUP for ages). I caught up with singer/guitarist Kip Berman, bassist Alex Naidus, keyboardist Peggy Wang and drummer Kurt Feldman as they sweatily stepped off the stage after headlining the Insound party in a car park. We managed to get literally five minutes to have a chat before they zipped off to play another show before heading back to NYC and get out on the road to promo their excellent sophomore record Belong (Slumberland, 2011), which I really hope you have listened to a hundred times by now.
You guys have been non-stop this week haven’t you?
Kip: We played a festival down in Mexico just now – it was amazing. We didn’t get much time to experience much of it though, as we had to come back here.
Didn’t you come to SXSW earlier, play, go to Mexico and play, then come back here and play?
Alex: Yeah, and then we’re going straight out on tour across the US when we get back to New York as well.
[We're interrupted by an authoritative man with a loud megaphone, shouting 'CAN EVERYONE PLEASE LEAVE THE AREA… PLEASE MAKE YOUR WAY TO THE EXITS NOW. NOWWWW!']
I guess we should hurry this up… What have you guys been up to? I last saw you at ['SUP Editor] Cameron’s Christmas Day party, Kip.
Kip: We’ve just been hanging out, doing some real quality hanging. Ummm, I guess a lot of band practice.
Peggy: We’ve spent a lot of time at Angelica Kitchen. That’s our favorite restaurant.
The worst thing about that Christmas Day was being duped into buying wine product at a bodega in Brooklyn.
Kip: What? Like box wine?
Alex: No, no, no. It’s not real wine – it’s like that fake wine that you get that’s only 5% or 6%.
So the album’s dropping right now. Are you excited? Are you bored of it?
Alex: Bored of it now. We’re ready for the next one.
How’s your SXSW been?
Kip: It’s not been too bad. This is our third SXSW – we actually played the ‘SUP party the first time we were here. We played out on a patio with Micachu and Telepathe.
Who have your SXSW picks been this year?
Kip: I want to catch Veronica Falls.
Alex: I caught them last night, they were really good.
Kip: Also, The Weekend who we just played with. They’re good friends of ours.
Peggy: I wanna see Edwyn Collins.
Kip: And Pulled Apart By Horses, we played in a basement with them in Leeds once. One of their guitar players used to be in a band called the Manhattan Love Suicides, which were actually the inspiration for us forming a band.
[And with that, we were ushered out of the parking lot.]