Laura Green ’18
Assistant Arts Editor
It’s hard to define TAUK. Their music transcends and defies strict genre classifications. As it explores multiple directions and sounds. They “don’t limit” themselves, as TAUK’s keyboardist A.J. Carter explained. The self-described “instrumental rock fusion” band, which will perform at Northampton’s Pearl Street Nightclub on March 4, mixes hip-hop, jazz and funk in their improvisational sets. I had the chance to talk to Carter about the album they’re working on and their upcoming show in Northampton.
How does the album you’re working on now differ from your other albums?
It was different in that we took time off to really focus and hone in for this record. We didn’t really have the opportunity to do that before because we needed to get the music out there. The last two records we did while performing about 150 shows a year. This record was great because we took three months off to stay in the studio. We’re really happy with the music we recorded. We laid down 16 tracks, and now we need to figure out which songs are going to make the record. It’s a good position for us to be in.
Why did you decide to create your live album HEADROOM? Where did the idea come from?
We consider ourselves a live band. I think that’s where we excel the most. We wanted people to have an idea of what it’s like to come to our shows, to see where we take the songs, to see all the things we do to make our live shows much more fun, not only for ourselves but for our listeners; taking risks. People like to see and hear the human element. Even if you make a mistake, it’s all part of the show. It’s about how you present yourself. I think in the live record a lot of that comes across.
What’s your favorite thing about performing live?
The energy. It may sound kind of cliché to say. It’s such a weird thing, the relationship between the crowd and the band. We feed off the energy given back by the crowd. It’s an important symbiotic relationship for us.
What can people who come to your Northampton show expect?
We definitely have a bunch of new songs that we’ve been trying out and playing from this new record. I know we haven’t released it yet, but it’s hard for us to sit on new music. We want to make every show different and every show unique. So keep an ear out for new music. It’s a really exciting moment for us figuring out how these new songs take shape live.
What’s the next goal for your music career?
The next step in our music career is to step up some of the venues we’re playing, move into bigger rooms. Also, to keep writing and keep producing and putting material out. We’ve had a lot of growth, but we still need to grow. We want to help spread the word, overall.
Anything else you want to tell The Sophian?
We’re excited to be back in the Northeast. It’s close to home. We’re excited play in our respective home turf. There [are] definitely a lot of exciting things going on that we’re looking forward to. This is going to be a good year.
Tickets for TAUK’s March 4th concert at Pearl Street are $12.50 in advance and $15 at the door.