Silhouette, a group of California refugees, wants to do something different than set up another punk-rock franchise; they want to touch you, as Tayler Wooten (guitar, vocals) makes clear between spilling tropical drinks during a recent interview with the band.
“It’s not so much being a well-known, famous band that we’re bent on,” he says. “It’s the fact that we can share the stuff we create with somebody that’s 10,000 miles away and touch them.”
It takes a certain cockiness, alcohol-induced or otherwise, to casually dismiss your as-yet-unaquired fame. But in this case it isn’t pretentiousness so much as arrogance: They know they’re good. And the earnest, emotional songs form an uneasy alliance with the band’s ambition, as if they’ve cornered the market on expressing human suffering.
“My main inspiration is my daughter,” says Dav Fulford-Brown (drums, percussion, vocals). “I’ve done music my whole life, and I’ve always known I was going to make it. That sounds conceited, but it’s not. I’ve been playing drums and percussion since I was 8 years old. My main inspiration to make it is my daughter, and I know I can give her the world if we make it.”
“Me, David [Fulford-Brown] and Robert [Cross] met in junior high, and we started a band, just a garage band to dork around and have fun,” says Wooten. “And we ended up being able to book shows at 14-years-old. John [Spoon], our bass player, we met a couple of years later, and it started becoming an obsession.”
Since moving to Reno for a change of scene, the band has begun recording their first album with producer Tom Gordon. The wall of sound Wooten and Cross lay down on guitar is reminiscent of early British Shoegazer bands. The vocals often function as another instrument; Cross and Spoon harmonize, occasionally blending in with the guitars, with the result percolating throughout the songs. At this point, it should be noted that the band’s sound has a definite Radiohead (at its most guitar-oriented) influence, especially on the debut single “And.” Perhaps the combined vocal effort doesn’t add up to Thom Yorke, but Silhouette has something Radiohead doesn’t have: a decent rhythm section that moves the songs forward.
“Basically, ‘And’ is a way for me to remind myself I wrote the song during a panic attack,” explains Cross. “I was reminding myself that I was going to be back to normal again and everything was going to be OK.”
“When we write out songs, it triggers emotions, and it’s not just stuff we’re doing with our fingers. It’s stuff we feel 125 percent,” says Wooten.
“We’ve heard a lot of good feedback from people who are doing what we’re craving to do,” Wooten continues. “Paz [Lenchantin] from A Perfect Circle, her and her family have said that our music gives them goose bumps, and that’s Greek to us because we just do what comes naturally to us.”
“I can’t tell you how many times music has saved my life," adds Cross. "If I could just make people feel the way other musicians have made me feel, then I’ll feel like I’ve succeeded."