Editor’s note: Listen Up is a Q&A featuring locals in the arts and culture community.
This week: Local musician Nick Anderson. His band Nick Anderson and the Skinny Lovers is releasing its album “Ephrem” at 9:30 p.m. Friday at the Mousetrap, 311 S. Barstow St.
How would you describe “Ephrem”?
It is a three-part album that goes over the last three years of our lives kind of growing up in our 20s and having big dreams.
Why did you decide to have three parts?
We had a few songs to start and we wanted to get some music out into the world right away.
From there it turned into this thing where each part of “Ephrem” was a different idea and a different feel as we had gone through the transformative part of our 20s. The first part is right out of college, first job; the second part is in your job and starting to figure out being an adult; and the next one was where do we go from there?
Has any of the music already been released?
Two of the parts were released on their own and then part three no one has heard yet.
We’re releasing part three with the other two as a full album, but we completely remixed and remastered all of the songs so they’ll sound a little different than how people might have heard them previously.
How did this album grow or change your relationship with your bandmates (Ian McAlister and Jeff Durow Jr.)?
I would say it made us all grow as people. We settled in to who we wanted to be or who we strive to be as we went through this album. It was really cool to see those guys come out of their shells as performers, I came out of my shell and we all started to figure out who we wanted to be.
I think you can hear that over the three parts. As you get closer to the end you can see we started to figure out who we wanted to be as a band and what we wanted to say.
What goals did you have going in?
When we first started the album, I just wanted to write music, put it out and keep playing. It was right after the end of my old band so I just wanted to start a new project.
But the second part we started getting super creative, and our goals were just to make a really good couple of songs. We worked really hard on those, and those were the ones that ended up getting licensed to MTV, Netflix and Discovery.
In the third part, our goal was to write songs that were going to be catchy and that people would relate with. Also trying to write songs that were fun and a little bit more upbeat because a lot of our songs to that point were more relaxed and ambient.
What do you think of end result?
We are super pumped about how the album actually sounds. We worked with Justin Anderson and Justin Green and a few different studios in Eau Claire.
It’s definitely the best sounding record any of us have done, and the best songs we’ve ever done, especially this new part. We are finally finding our stride as a songwriting group and figuring out what Nick Anderson and the Skinny Lovers should sound like.
How do you hope people respond?
I hope people connect with it somehow, whether it be the way I meant it when I wrote it or if it means something for their own lives. The whole reason I and the other guys in the band do music is to connect with people and have them feel something.
What will the release show consist of?
We have a band from the cites called The Shackletons coming — a band we’ve become good friends with.
They’re going to end the night, and the Over Unders is going to open the show.
We’re going to be playing the entirety of the new album, which we haven’t ever done before and we’re also going to play some new songs, which will be cool.
As far as the production value of the show, we have some more lights and fun type of things on stage for people to watch so it’ll be more of a show than people have seen before.
We’re trying to make it the best show of the year. We’ll have our albums available there as well as other merchandise.
We dedicated the whole album to Scott Glenz. He passed away two weeks ago, but he was a big fan, and is the dad of our bass player’s girlfriend. He’s played with us several times.
We have a remembrance to him inside our album booklets and we’ll do a toast to him that night.
— Katy Macek