Cultivating creativity onstage and off
Creative endeavors have a habit of going hand-in-hand and the genesis of NYC-based electropop act Cultfever is no different. Instrumentalist Joseph Durniak met lead singer Tamara Jafar when they were working at a film post-production firm together. Since their self-titled debut album in 2011, they have developed their high energy set at rooms around New York, culminating in an opening set for AVAN LAVA at Music Hall of Williamsburg in April (where they co-headline tomorrow night). Locally Amped chatted with Durniak and Jafar about recording in a Brooklyn apartment, their latest EP and animated music video.
Metro: So how were you able to record in your apartment, especially in New York?
Tamara Jafar: We built our living room into a studio. Part of our process is being able to write, record and produce whenever and we wanted that flexibility. Joe has a good amount of equipment from his engineering background.
Joseph Durniak: Nothing’s sound proof and we can’t do something like track drums, but it’s money saving — and we have nice neighbors.
Metro: Haha, awesome. I noticed that your new EP, “Animals” is definitely happier than your last album. Is there any reason for that?
T.J.: Yes, it’s definitely different. We wrote those songs at the same time that we were recording our first record and realized that they sounded different. We decided to release them as an EP now so that we could release new material before our second album [which will come next year].
Metro: Well it’s definitely great and there’s an awesome animated video for the single, “Animals,” to go along with it. How did that come about?
T.J.: We met an animator, Rich Chapple, known for [Above Average Network's] “Waco Valley Cartoon” and [we decided] to spin an animated music video off from that. It was one of the most easygoing processes we’ve had. He interpreted the lyrics visually and it kind of caught on.
Metro: You’re definitely continuing to get bigger and better opportunities. You’re still unsigned, right? How did you get involved with the Film Shop?
J.D.: We’re doing everything ourselves, but we’ve been having discussions with different labels. [As for the Film Shop,] it was kind of crazy. We met [filmmaker] Zachary Timm while watching Wayne Coyne about ten feet from the stage in Austin during South by Southwest. It was a very South by Southwest ‘summer camp’ [type of] experience.
Metro: I’m sure. What are you looking forward to most on Saturday?
T.J.: Being on that stage, one of the largest stages [that we've played] is so magical. The way it feels is really an incredible experience.
Watch their animated music video for “Animals” below. They play Music Hall of Williamsburg tomorrow night for a co-headlining set with Wild Yaks presented by the Film Shop.