Interview & Photos: Starbenders

Interview & Photos by Keira Zhou

How did the band form?

Kimi: Aaron and I were playing together for the longest time. We played in a band together about 4 years ago, and that band never really made it to the stage, it just kinda stayed in the studio. Once we realized that it wasn’t going to bloom into something else, we decided to go off and make our own band. Then later on came in Kriss, our guitar player, and then Emily. When Emily came, we were finally one unit. That’s kinda how we got started. 

Who are your music inspirations as a band? Who influenced your music?

Emily: We really like KISS, Kriss is a huge Zeppelin fan. We like a lot of metal too.

 Kimi: Like old metal, Deep Purple, Rainbow, UFO, Scorpions. Also, New York Dolls, T. Rex. 

You released a new single yesterday “Holy Mother”? Could you tell us more about the single? 

Kimi: So the song started out as one thing and then ended up as another. And we were super excited for it to become what it became. It was a journey, it's one of those songs that we just had to witness and allow it to kind of take on its own life. And we were happy to facilitate along the way, and really wrestle it down and make it the best it could be. It was a really exciting process for us to get to that point, and was written around the idea of early budding sexuality, and budding experiences of coming into feeling things different way, not really knowing how to place our emotions, feeling guilt for coming into that. And from that the idea evolved into hoping that those feelings would eventually take you over and just the depth and magic of those early experiences, feeling spiritual and all that.

Were there any fun memories you’d like to share when you guys were on tour? This one or the ones before.

Emily: Last time when we were in New York, Kimi actually won a drag contest. Of all the gay men in the contest, Kimi won. 

Kriss: She really killed it. She deserves it.

Kimi: I was an honorary participant, and to be in the New York drag scene and just go to these clubs is something we like to do anyways, when I was pulled onto the stage to do it, it was super fun, cause it’s such a legendary scene here in New York. It was just a New York night.

What do you like to do during your downtime?

Aaron: We actually started doing movie night, me and Kriss, boys movie night. Mostly comedies, but all kinds of movies, anything that we we're feeling. One of us will just be like, I’ve been wanting to watch a movie for so long so we gotta do that for movie night. We like to do a lot stuff together. Whenever we are in a new city we haven’t been before, we try to go see all the sites. First time we came to New York, we tried to see everything, as much as possible we can do in a week. And then sometimes we’ll go see a movie all of us together. We like to go eat ramen all the time, all the food places.

Emily: I read a lot on my downtime. Reading The Runaways’ lead singer’s memoir now, which is really cool. That’s what I like to do. 


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