Listen up fans of the Black Keys and the Arcs, putting a twist on the blues-rock sound is The West Texas Mammoths. They have a gripping pull on me, sounds of that electric guitar so strong, I can only imagine how they would sound live. Their acoustics almost unadulterated as the riffs cut through the air and grab a hold of you, screaming for your attention. Only starting to play together as a band this last February, they knew from their first meeting they were on to something that was going to be big. Just releasing their first EP, The Mammoth, in October, this group is ready for more. West Texas Mammoths are David Kapsner singing lead vocals, playing guitar and piano. Michael Jekot is lead guitar and backup vocals, Tyler Rush is bass, backing vocals, and Joseph Noga bangs it out on the drums, also singing backup. This is what they had to say about themselves…
-Who is West Texas Mammoths?
We are 4 good friends who love to play music. Collectively, we’re uncontrollably goofy, but are very serious about the music we create. West Texas Mammoths embodies our modern ideal of Manifest Destiny. We are heading west into the sunset chasing the dream of quitting our 9-5 desk jobs, so we can play music all the time.
-How would you describe your sound?
It’s a stew of colliding musical dreams. Allman Brothers style lead guitar pushing against emotional and evocatively raw vocals. Funky bass grooves that melt into booming and aggressively anxious drum beats. It’s like Cage the Elephant with more Americana.
-How did you adapt your sound?
Well that’s a little deep! We have all been playing music most of our lives, and listening to all sorts of genres. We play individually and with other people. When we’re all together this is what comes out. Also, burning incense during practice is crucial – for the creative process, ambiance, and body odor…
-How did you meet?
Three of us (Kapsner, Jekot, and Rush) have been playing together since we were kids in Austin. Kapsner met Noga at a hole-in-the-wall Blues bar in east Dallas. They agreed to jam the next day and found themselves on the same page musically. We all met in Austin the following weekend, forming the West Texas Mammoths.
-Are you planning on touring soon or working on an album?
Both! We just released our “Mammoth EP” and are planning to ramp up touring over this next year. We have an album’s worth of material, which we play live. We would like to record our debut album once we get some more touring under our belts.
-Who do you listen to?
We are all over the map on this one – anything from Led Zeppelin to Drive-by-Truckers to Kendrick Lamar. Joey listens to deep house, hard electro, and just about anything else with technical drum beats – giving him a unique approach to our blues-based music.
-If you could work with any other artist, who would that be?
Dan Auerbach. We are all really into his new project, The Arcs. He has recently produced some incredible albums that we really dig.
-What are you working on now?
We are working on writing new songs and perfecting old material. Right now we are split between Dallas and Austin. Our main goal for 2016 is to get all the Mammoths in the same city – so extinction is not an option. #getyourtrunksup