Blitzen Trapper exemplifies the honesty and grit associated with the Pacific Northwest sound. Self-releasing its first three albums, the Portland, Oregon-based sextet now finds itself on the famed Sub Pop label. Last month, the band known for its “alternative folk” sound released American Goldwing, its sixth full-length outing. On Sunday, October 16, Blitzen Trapper will return to Birmingham for a performance at Bottletree Cafe. The Belle Brigade and Smoke Fairies open the 9 p.m. show. Recently, we caught up with Blitzen Trapper frontman Eric Earley by phone on the day of American Goldwing’s release.
Brent Thompson: Eric, thanks for your time today. What has this year been like for your band?
Eric Earley: We haven’t been out at all – we’ve been out for two weeks total. It’s been nice to hang out. Last year was hard – a lot of touring. It’s been nice to have this year off.
BT: If you will, talk about the evolution of American Goldwing. Were these all new songs or had some been lying around in bits and pieces?
EE: It’s all new. I wrote all the songs within a few months and recorded them. It all kind of came together real fast for me.
BT: Do you write while you’re on tour?
EE: I don’t really write on the road. I’ll write a whole record in a month and maybe a couple of tracks will come a little later. But, for the most part, I’ll have a whole bunch of songs come at once.
BT: If you will, yalk about the current climate in the age of Internet, iTunes and satellite radio.
EE: You can’t take anything too seriously anymore because things change so fast now. Things are here and then they’re gone. Now, touring is the most important aspect of music, whereas it used to be record sales. Touring is the bedrock of what bands are doing now.
Tickets to the 18+ show are $12 – $14 day of the show – and can be purchased at www.thebottletree.com. Showtime is 9 p.m. with doors opening at 8 p.m.