Band Interview: Picnic Lightning

Games, Brrraaains & A Head-Banging Life are pleased to bring you an interview with desert punk rockers, Picnic Lightning.

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1. How did you get started as a band?

Picnic Lightning formed in 2013 with Thomas Ketchersid on vocals, guitar, Cole Watkins on lead vocals and guitar, John Lenox Cope on bass and vocals and Cameron “Green Eggs & Cam” Navarro on drums and vocals. Thomas, Cole, & John had played music together since high school and Cameron joined them after hitting it off at a local Oktoberfest party. They decided to keep him. Their Gilded Youth EP (2014) and eponymous debut album (2016) were enthusiastically received by local press and blogs, earning them nominations for Best Rock Band, Best Rock EP, Best Rock Album in the Fort Worth Weekly Music Awards.

2. How would you describe your sound?

Raw and brooding desert punk, the sound of summer heat and dimly lit clubs. Dark, post-everything wall of sound howls like a dust storm, delivering a spiritual stomp that dwells in the shadowland of trenchant questions and orphic revelations.Our songs deftly touch the inexhaustible complexities of life and do so with sonics as singular as the individual human experience. They croon and holler, stomp and skip, wax thoughtful where vengeance belongs; and vice-versa. It’s the fuel that sets your car aflame or gets you home; the drug that puts you down or brings out the beast. The band’s mantra from day one has been: let no one suffer.

3. What bands/artists would you say have influenced your style of music?

Musically, most directly, it would be Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Ty Segall, The National and Queens of the Stone Age. For us, non-musical would be a variety of art, literature, and film: Rene Magritte, Alex Ross, Francis Bacon, Harold Pinter, Roberto Bolaño, Arthur C Clarke, Rainier Maria Rilke, and David Lynch.

4. Has the rise of YouTube & music streaming helped or hindered you as a band?

Access is everything. Growing up, the ease of access allowed each of us to hear music we would otherwise not have been allowed to possess. It also allows for connection, and for a tipping of the power scales to the masses. Supporting musicians, especially smaller artists, is essential to a healthy long-term music industry, but at the end of the day, we really just want people to listen to (our) music and hopefully enjoy it.

5. What do you enjoy doing when you’re not making music?

Thomas is a published poet and author, and you can usually find him reading, writing, or hanging with his cats.

Cole is an accomplished graphic designer and you can find his pop culture-inspired t-shirt designs here.

John is a communications professional who loves hanging with his family, visiting art museums and parks.

Cameron is a mindfulness teacher, podcast producer, and licensed social worker.

6. What are your future plans musically? Tours?

We’re currently focused on releasing a few singles, writing new music, and booking upcoming gigs. We have Over My Head coming out on May 6th, with a handful of singles being released through the summer. You can find all our new music on Spotify and other music platforms, and you can find our shows on our socials and websites. We’ve got new merch on the way, so grab a shirt.


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  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!