Rocking Hopscotch: An Interview With The Kneads
Dozens of local and regional bands play alongside nationwide acts, flooding downtown Raleigh with a wide-reaching blend of music genres. Hopscotch Music Festival is on its way to town. One Greensboro-based band, the Kneads, is gearing up for the eclectic Raleigh stage, and was cool enough to grant us an interview.
When asked to describe The Kneads’ sound, Michael Joncas–the band’s guitar, vocals, and bass–responds, “We don’t fit perfectly into one specific genre. The songs on the album are made from the same ingredients used by all the bands we love.”
He continues, “We definitely wear our influences on our sleeves. I suppose you can say we fall into the wide open category of indie rock.”
Band members are Joel Darden (guitar, vocals, bass), Joe Garrigan (drums) and Michael Joncas (guitar, vocals, bass). The musicians have a distinctive pedigree within the North Carolina indie rock scene. Formed in Greensboro, NC, in November 2013, the three-piece indie rock band plays often in the Triangle.
Joncas lists Pavement, (North Carolina’s) Archers of Loaf, The Minutemen, The Cure and The Replacements as bands influential to The Kneads’ sound, stating, “Truly, we all love music so much, the influences are endless.”
Shiny Grey Monotone asserts, “The Kneads have synthesized a sound that defined an era, pays proper homage to it, and goes forth into the good night with torch in hand to show the way for a new generation.”
The Kneads’ debut album, titled “Letting You Let Me Down,” was released in April 2015 on Durham’s Potluck Foundation record label. An article published in Indy Week in August 2014 describes PotLuck as “one of the Triangle’s most vital currents of local music.”
In a CD review published on the Punk News, The Kneads’ sound is described as “refreshing melodic pop rock” which borrows from “post punk and alt-rock influences like Fugazi, Weezer [and] Dinosaur Jr.”
Their album was recorded and mixed by Jerry Kee at Duck Kee Studios in Mebane, NC, between October and December 2014.
“We were so excited to get the opportunity to work with Jerry, as we all knew his work with so many other great bands that we listened to,” Joncas says
Jerry Kee has documented the North Carolina music scene for over two decades. He recorded the first albums by Chapel Hill bands Polvo and Superchunk.
A digital single of The Kneads’ song “Jaded and Rejuvenated” was released about a month prior to the release of their debut album.
Band member Darden is mostly responsible for reaching out to other bands and clubs to set up shows.
“We love to form relationships with other bands, whereby we play in their town and have them come play in Greensboro and support one another,” Joncas relays. “This is something we love about Potluck Foundation Records. We have met so many other great people who are all supporting each other and having a great time doing it.”
When asked about future goals for The Kneads, Joncas revealed that the band members have composed many new songs since their album’s release.
“We are anxious to polish them so that we can start adding them to the set. We would really like to do a small tour up and down the East Coast. Hopefully, next summer. Until then, we hope to keep playing as often as we can,” Joncas says.
The digital download of “Letting You Let Me Down” is available at Pot Luck, at Amazon.com, and on iTunes. CDs, buttons, stickers and T-shirts are available at their shows.