INTERVIEW: Sean Roberts talks about his new band Asm A Tik and the future of Straight A’s

Photo by Bryan Volz

There is a buzz surrounding Asm A Tik, a brand spanking new band featuring the likes of Louisville mainstays Brian Foor, Nathan Smallwood and Sean Roberts. While people are excited, no one knows exactly what to expect. Before the band plays their first show this Saturday at The Cat House, I was able to ask Sean a few questions about the new venture as well a few other topics..

Never Nervous: There’s a lot of talk about your new band Asm A Tik. Who does what in the band and how did it happen?”

Sean Roberts: Brian Foor plays keyboards & saxophone, Nate Smallwood plays a Warr guitar and I play the drums. Brian originally asked me and Nate to back him up live for his solo stuff. When we got together, we scrapped that idea and started a new band.

NN: You guys are playing your first show a few weekends from now. How would you describe your band’s sound to everyone as most of us haven’t heard anything yet?

SR: I’ll admit that I’m the worst at describing my bands. I can say that I’ve never played in a band like this before. It’s loud without distortion, experimental without feeling lost. There are no vocals. At certain times Brian is actually playing keyboard and sax at the same time!

NN: Are there any particular influences behind the music, or a plan to sound a certain way? Or did everything just kind of happen?

SR: I’m sure we all have our personal influences shining through, but we never sat down and said “I want this band to sound like X”.

NN: I know its early, but are there any plans for a record and such? Is there a bigger picture for the band or are you simply going with the flow?

SR: I guess we’re just going with the flow. I’m sure we’ll want to record sometime within the next year, but what or when is wide open.

NN: I haven’t heard any news out of the Straight A’s camp in a while. What’s the story there? Is a new record and/or tour on the horizon?

SR: We are currently in the mixing stage of making a new record. It’s much different than our first record. It is a beast that I think we’re all proud of, and we have really taken our time to make sure it is the perfect record to our ears. As far as when it will come out, we aren’t really sure. We are hopefully gonna play some shows before that.

NN: Do you have any other music-related projects on the menu?

SR: As far as playing music, two bands keeps me pretty busy. But I’ve also been working with Trip Barriger at Treehouse Audio as an apprentice engineer for the last few months, which is a lot of fun.

NN: You’ve been involved in Louisville’s punk scene for quite some time. Can you remember who was playing the first show you attended?

SR: Yep, it was one of those Insomnicathons they used to do in the 90’s. October ’93 I think. Insomnicathon was a big long weekend of music, art & poetry. I saw Lather, Telephone Man, Bush League, Enkindel, Rodan, Endpoint & more that I can’t remember now. All for $3 at two different venues. It totally blew my little 14 year old mind. But it was more than the music. It was the scene itself. People selling zines & records, the hare krishnas in their van out front selling food. All of the colorful people. It has stuck with me ever since.

NN: It seems there has been an explosion of quality music out Louisville recently. Do any bands/artist around town stand out to you?

SR: I’m married with three kids, so I don’t get out to shows so much anymore. But my current favorites are Alcohol Party, Rude Weirdo & Anwar Sadat.

NN: Finally, tell me about three records that have been blowing your mind lately.

Dead Rider – Mother of Curses
The Sorts – More There
Chll Pll – Aggressively Humble