Broncho slows the tempo down ahead of Wednesday’s Riot Room show

Broncho’s new album, Double Vanity, may not have the commercial appeal of its predecessor, Just Hip Enough to Be Woman. It’s dense, layered and droning and yet still manages to engage with hooks beneath the reverb. No matter its commercial viability, Double Vanity rewards with multiple listens.

The Pitch spoke by phone with Broncho’s guitarist and singer, Ryan Lindsey, about slowing the tempo and finding fans in KC.

The Pitch: It seems like Double Vanity is designed for the weather we’re having right now.

Ryan Lindsey: That’s what we were hoping for.

Where did that chill, droney aspect of it come from?

I guess you can write a song and do different things with it, but the most natural thing for me with these songs was slowing them down. They didn’t make as much sense if they were sped up. Anytime we do a song, we mess around with tempos until it just feels right. So, some of it is a process of the speed, and the other part of it is trying to figure out that, if this feels right, how do you fill out the whole picture.

Ultimately, filling it out with a certain amount of reverb and keeping the guitars pretty chuggy, that had the most to do with the droniness of it, because everything stays in this midtempo world. Maybe it’s also that we’ve done other records different ways, where you’ll find out a perfect place to stop and you throw on a different guitar. This one — it felt right to keep everything on the same plane and kind of doing the same thing.

Is it a unique challenge to keep the heft for which Broncho is known, without going as fast?

You mean, like, energy-wise, live and all that stuff? Yeah. It’s like, any time we record a song, we’re trying to figure out how to properly make sense of it in the studio, and then performing it, it’s like a whole other song. Like, how do you get this to make sense. Even on the second record, when we started playing them, they felt really slow, because the first record was faster than the second.

When we first started playing them, we were like, “This feels weird,” because we didn’t know how to go between the two records, other than just not thinking about it. The same thing happened with this record. It was like, “How do we make sense [of this]?” And, really, it was just playing them over and over every night. Eventually you find little places to put energy into that you wouldn’t have previously thought. So, it’s always a math problem. But I like math. [laughs]

In terms of live shows, you used to play Lawrence so often, I thought you were a local band.

Yeah, we were playing Lawrence a lot in the beginning. Kansas City, we didn’t play as much, but then we eventually got to a place where we kind of haven’t played locally hardly at all — including Oklahoma. Kansas City, St. Louis — those places we haven’t played as often, but it seems like we’re circling, playing everywhere else.

We’ll drive way to far to play out first show [of a tour]. We’ll drive to Phoenix to play our first show, which is kind of dumb, because we’ve had some good shows in Kansas City. I like Riot Room.

It seems like so many bands from Oklahoma have made Kansas City or Lawrence a second home, just because it’s sort of the first stop on any tour headed north.

There’s a lot of people we know who have moved to Kansas City from Oklahoma. Like, close friends, so it makes it even more comfortable to go these places. And even, like, New York and L.A. have become that way, because so many people from Oklahoma have moved to those cities that we go there, and our guest list will be even larger in those cities than anywhere but home.

with the Conquerors and Billy Changer
Riot Room
Wednesday, August 3

Categories: Music