Just scrolling through Ten High’s Facebook page will tell you that these Fayetteville, Arkansas rock and rollers are right up our alley.
They’ve played shows with some 50thirdand3rd favs – The Uh-huhs, Gymshorts, Bombay Harambee, and Aquarian Blood to name a few, and the artwork for their new EP is courtesy of The Blind Shake’s Jim Blaha. Starting off on the right foot for sure.
The band recently released their second EP Cable Vision – highlighting a progression from the nasty garage psych of their first EP Libido, to a marriage of the Pixies and the spirit of the early punk of 1970s New York. But really this is straight ahead, fuzzed out, punk and roll.
There are some ultra cool songs here – the Ramones stomp of Super Drew, and the sneering attitude of Double Wide are stand-outs for me. One thing is a given, Ten High are definitely a band to watch.
We are….Cat (lead vox, guitar) , Devan (Drums), Matt ( Guitar/vox) and Aaron (Bass)
People say we sound like….
There’s a few that we get a lot. The Cramps, Butthole Surfers, Southern Ty Segall and Television. We don’t really agree with a lot of that but that’s what they say! Some of it’s pretty flattering, so it’s all good.
How did you become Ten High and what’s with the name?
Cat’s granddad started a gun club in Hogeye, Arkansas back in the 70’s and called it Ten High Gun Club. We couldn’t think of a name. We had some really stupid shit picked out. One day Cat was just like, ” Hey, I have an idea, let’s just fuckin’ call it Ten High.” And at the time we weren’t sure if that would be a cool name or not but we kinda decided to keep it , at least temporarily, cos we were tired of not having a name. We were wanting to play shows and shit and we needed a name. Well, clearly, we ended up sticking with it. We found out a few months ago that there’s actually a really shitty, cheap whiskey called Ten High. We tried it and it sucks. We didn’t know about it when we named the band. Don’t drink that shit, it sucks. I just hope our music isn’t perceived as shitty as we perceive that whiskey as tasting. Haha.
Tell about the scene scene in Fayetteville
When people think of Fayetteville, AR, they think of the Hogs and college football and shit. They don’t really think of music. And the scene here kinda reflects that. It’s cool sometimes, but , generally , it’s a college town with alot of college kids and music you’d expect. . All of us have spent a lot of time in cities other than this one. Like, dirty cities. So we all sort of bring this dirtier sound to the table, I think. Cos Fayettteville is super fucking gorgeous and clean and safe. Memphis, Ft Smith, AR and Tulsa, OK aren’t really that way. We really love playing in Little Rock, it’s just a few hours away. Our two favorite bands from there are RadRadRiot and The Uh Huh’s. REALLY cool guys making super bad-ass music.
What music has had an influence on your sound?
Anything with a lot of emotion, I think. Loud rock n roll. The Blind Shake and Black Lips come to mind. The Blind Shake is so bad-ass. Cat is buddies with a few of them. Jim from The Blind Shake let us use some of his artwork for Cable Vision. We love that band so much. It’s so cool watching them because they have so much energy and power when they play, and convey so much emotion. Like , you believe everything that he says. You believe in what they do because their passion is so intense, how couldn’t you? And Black Lips are just so influential on anyone that listens to them. It’s hard not to feel inspired. Besides that, old Stax music. Not that we sound anything like Stax musicians, cos we play garage punk shit so what wouldn’t make sense. But it definitely inspires you when you listen to it. So much feel and groove and emotion. Doesn’t sound fake or pushed, sounds natural and groovy and like whoever wrote it was born to do that shit.
Tell us about your live show… We drink a lot to loosen up. We like to be really loud and let people know that we’re there. We hope they’ll dig it, but if they don’t, at least we had a lot of fun and did everything how we wanted to. We like melting faces.
What influences the band lyrically? Posers. People who have huge ego’s who walk around like they own the place. Some of those people say they play rock n roll, but they don’t. Cos they are too concerned with what everyone thinks about them to possibly play real rock n roll. Rock n roll is about attitude and not really giving a shit if anyone likes you. And saying you play rock n roll when you really play some emo poser whiny hipster bullshit is really fake and shitty and one of our songs is entirely about that exact kind of person. We all know a few. Besides that, drugs and sex and feeling good. Those are all influences cos that’s what we like.
Best concert we’ve ever seen…?
Daikaiju is the first to come to mind. Cos their live show is INSANE. Like, they are loud as shit, and then halfway through the set they set their drum kit on fire. But then, they take apart the drum kit and hand random pieces to audience members to hold and then they hold up the drummer and he plays in the air! Who the fuck does that? Then, Thee Oh Sees, cos who doesn’t love them? They influence us a lot, too. They’re the best. Then, there was a show that a few of us saw that was Ty Segall, Ex Cult and WAND. Ty is the man. Ex Cult is the best fucking punk band ever and WAND is really awesome. There’s no one like any of them. All of these bands I mentioned are all one of a kind. Maybe that’s why they are the best live show, no one’s doing it quite like them and they have lots of energy, you pick up on that when your watching them. The energy, it’s all about the energy. They translate it to the crowd and you feel awesome watching them.
If you could pick any time to travel back to for music, where would you go and what year would it be….
California late 60’s. Cos everything was genuine and badass and the shows were all legendary, although I’m sure they didn’t realize it at the time. Which makes it even cooler.
What tunes are currently on heavy rotation for you…
Lots! Our tastes are all over the place. King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard, they are the best psych garage band ever! On Castle Face, too. So, you know they’re good. Kendrick Lamar, cos we all get down on that tasty hip hop shit. He’s so fucking passionate, love it. Useless Eaters. The Singles. But all of it is bad-ass, everything they do.
If you could open for any band right now who would that be and why?
COACHWHIPS! That’s all. Just cos…Coachwhips.
If you could only bring ONE record (you can all answer if you like) in the tour van/bus/plane what would it be?
Aretha’s Gold, My Bloody Valentine-Loveless, Ty Segall Twins, cos it’s a classic. Those one of a kind records, ya know? Those people ran the game, some of them still do.
When you’re not playing and have some time off, where could we find you…
In the woods smokin’ doobs. That’s about all we do, and getting down on GTA.
From the Random Question Generator:
Did you have an imaginary friend as a child? Do you have one now?
We’re all each others imaginary friends. Aaron’s brother is his imaginary friend. I don’t know what any of that means.
What’s up for 2015/2016?
Well, for the rest of 2015 we have some light touring planned with our buddies in Manateees. We also have another EP coming out , hopefully, the beginning of next year. 2016 we plan on doing some heavy touring and putting out a full length and hopefully getting on some cool festivals. If we’re lucky! 2015 has been pretty good to us, especially for being so new. But we really hope to do some more cooler shit next year! Also, it wouldn’t hurt to have some labels that we fit with helping us put some shit out. Fingers X’D ~!