I haven’t updated this in a while! Hard for me to believe but I started doing this project 5 years ago this month. Last year was really truly crazy in the life of Radiator Hospital. Super fun but exhausting. I made a concerted effort to do RH really hard last year and to really focus on it. Ever since I started playing in bands, I was always in a lot of bands at once, and RH felt like the thing that I will always be doing in the background while I’m playing all this other music. 2014 was the first year since I started RH that I didn’t play in any other bands (which is only sort of true, I made a record with Allison and went on tour twice with that project, but we never played a show that wasn’t also with RH so sort of not the same). It was a little weird to be focusing so much on this project, just because it’s stressful putting yourself out there that much, but all in all it was very rewarding. We made an LP we all really love, released Mall Of America on cassette and vinyl, put out a couple different split 7″s, went on several tours. It feels really good to make things and to create music and community with your friends.
That said, in 2015 I want to take steps back with Rad Hos. I’ve been feeling this overwhelming feeling of disappointment, confusion and disgust with the way the music industry works. It feels so good to be building something really naturally with Rad Hos, to just slowly gain fans by doing what we love as much as we can. But the more we build it, the stranger it feels to me. Of course I am endlessly thankful for all people who love this music, but I’m afraid of the capitalist system that tells me I am more deserving to make music than others, I am someone to look up to or emulate. The whole point of punk is that we don’t have to have that anymore, there aren’t rock stars anymore. I want to use my voice to lift up others who I feel are doing valuable and incredible work with their art, but it’s really scary to feel like I’m in a position where people are listening to me. I don’t feel worthy and I don’t like how it makes me feel. I don’t like how I see it make people act, it’s this terrible sickness that just infects everyone. I’m not exempt from that and I’m not making judgments on how people treat their bands. I just want to make music, it’s the only thing I’ve ever been good at, and I’ve never felt as good as I do when I’m singing a song.
I’ve been listening to a lot of CSNY, and I keep coming back to this song from Graham Nash’s “Wild Tales” LP. It really resonates with me. I’m sick of hanging my soul on the line. I want to separate my music as much as I can from the indie rock industrial complex. Now, I am not perfect and I am not trying to be. I’m sure that I will fail time and again, because the system we are working in is so fucked. But I’m just gonna try my best to be so fucking aware of everything I do. Trying to pay it forward and use whatever success we are getting to lift up the people who deserve it.
Anyways, got a couple records I’m working on that I’m excited for in 2015. Not a ton of touring for RH but we’ll be around. Keep on keepin’ on. -Sam