(Photo: Elise Bergman)
With a name like In Tall Buildings, listeners may conjure up imagery of large cities full of adventures with new faces, a lone soul standing in a corner office on the top floor of the most glamorous, yet stark, corporate building, or a crane scanning the cityscape while filming the latest blockbuster. The only thought which comes closest to describing Erik Hallʻs sound is the first.
Aside from references to love and loss, In Tall Buildings looks at what it means to go through the process of self-discovery. In Hallʻs self-titled album, he examines his past: past relationships, past travels, all while retaining a level of haunting beauty that is difficult to replicate elsewhere. We briefly chatted with Erik Hall while he was on tour about how his musical venture came to be, his influences, and his upcoming plans for the coming year.
This Coast: I know In Tall Buildings took a long time to cultivate. Do you feel your travels and involvement with other bands shaped what you wanted In Tall Buildings to be?
Erik Hall (In Tall Buildings): I don’t know if my relocating to Chicago or my involvement with other bands contributed directly to what In Tall Buildings turned out to be, musically. If anything, they simply allowed me to focus more on the project and simply devote more time to the development of my own music. When you’re on the road you have a lot of time to think and take notes, and I usually end up writing a lot of music while on tour. I was traveling a lot with NOMO at the time that In Tall Buildings was brewing in my head and at home between trips.
TC: There is a wide array of influences that can be heard in your music yet you retain a grassroots feel by recording at home. Why did you decide to go that route with this album?
Hall: The choice to record at home is more a product of circumstance than a deliberate plan. I love to record music, and I have a lot of gear of my own. I also tend to record as I write, using the Pro Tools session as a sketch pad that will eventually yield the actual completed songs. It’s just the way that I work, as opposed to writing a complete batch of songs and then recording them all at once. It’s a trade-off, really, because on one hand it’s nice to have that flexibility and complete control. On the other hand, it’s one of the reasons why my record took me four years to complete…
TC: What are your plans for the future? I noticed youʻre mainly touring on the East Coast along with a few Midwest spots. Do you have plans to expand to a nationwide tour in the near future?
Hall: We definitely plan to tour nationwide in the near future. This summer we have shows lining up for the Midwest while I focus my attention on the completion of the next album. Once the record is done and there are plans for a release, we’ll certainly get back on the road and visit as many cities as we can…
To find out more about In Tall Buildings, visit his website here. His self-titled album is available now via BandCamp, iTunes, and his website.
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