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In just under a week, this little lady will be covering the CMJ festival in New York City and one of those bands that I'€™ll be sure to catch live is Madison Square Gardeners. Since one girl can'€™t nearly cover everything going on at the festival (I only wish!), we'€™re starting the coverage with some sweet previews for you and post festival, we'€™ll be posting interviews and reviews of my personal favorites playing this year. The first preview? These guys.
Quite possibly one of the most understated yet most known New Yorker based bands, they will be releasing their new EP '€˜Taste the Thunder'€™ on November 4th and will be playing a few CMJ sets to warm up the crowds to the EP. I'€™ll personally be catching them at the Green Room Day Party on the twentieth but check out their myspace for all their set times and take a listen. This band is sure to be one we'€™re talking about soon enough!

How did Madison Square Gardeners come to be?
Mark Stepro and I met when we were both living in Columbus, Ohio. We were on a recording session...he liked my Wilco t-shirt and I was taken with his rugged good looks and his staunch commitment to physical education. It was all down hill from there.

You'€™re about to play this year'€™s CMJ Festival. What are you most looking forward to from this experience?
I'm looking forward to how they spell my name on the badge...it's always different every year. I'm also looking forward to taking a lot of meetings and handling my bizness.

How do you normally go about your live show?
We are usually too loud and have gotten mixed reviews for our controversial covers of songs like, "From A Distance" and "Shocking The Monkey" by TLC. We like to mix it up but not too much unless it's the right timing. Most of our show is all about whether or not it's the right time.

What'€™s your favorite song to play live and why?
I like to play "Blessing" because I don't have to sing it and I get to take a solo. Mark's favorite is probably something more artsy like "My Ex Girlfriend Is A Bad Lesbian On Drugs" or "The Loneliest Degeneration."

Your new EP drops in early November '€œTaste The Thunder'€. What can kids look forward to with this release?
The kids can look forward to really getting to know us for who we really are: 6 young men who are young, but not too old; thoughtful, kind, caring, obsequious, purple and clairvoyant. John sings the best song on the whole thing...it's number 5 I think and it's called "Lose Someone."

How did you go about the writing process for this release?
Most of the songs I'd already written...I wrote "Born With Nothing" with Keith Christopher from the Georgia Satellites after a bottle of red wine that we spilled some of on my living room carpet. "Shoe Gaze Band" is one that me and Mark and Rich and Rob all wrote together at rehearsal one day. That one might be my favorite.

What can fans look forward to with in the next few months from you guys? More touring, possibly a full length?
Yes...in the next few months we'll start recording our full length album...we'll put out another EP in March...we'll be on the road for most of November in the Midwest...we'll be touring the South in January, doing some dates with Drivin' N' Cryin' and we might be coming to Alaska in the new year...MAYBE.

If the band was to hit the road with any three bands/acts, who would they be?
For me, they would definitely be: Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Delta Spirit and the band Dawes. Also Joe Pug would have to tour manage us and sing one song at our show every night to remind us all of why we started doing this in the first place.

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