[Part 1 of 2] It’s common to try to describe a band by referencing another band. Good luck trying to do that with Glasgow’s Sons and Daughters. The quartet -- David Gow, Scott Peterson, Ailidh Lennon, Adele Bethel -- certainly doesn’t mimic their geographic counterparts in Belle and Sebastian or Franz Ferdinand, nor Arab Strap or the Zephyrs, which Bethel and Gow have toured with previously. Still, the folk-rock, which blends traditional Scottish sounds with blues traditions, of Sons and Daughters has received critical acclaim for its folk-rock blend, being called "by far the most exciting British band in ‘04” by Dazed and Confused magazine. Prefix sat down with the band before a show with Franz Ferdinand at Volume in Brooklyn, and what followed was a discussion about their tour mates, devoted fans, !!! and SXSW.
PM: So you were sort of friends before or did you pretty much come together to form a band?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: I kind of had a relationship with Adele just from the record shop talking about Will Oldham records or My Bloody Valentine or whatever.
PM: People have asked me what you guys sound like, and I’ve had trouble answering. How do you respond to that question?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: It’s a really hard question. If you’re in a specific kind of band with a specific sound, it’s easier to label. If people ask what we’re like, I say a rock ‘n’ roll band with a folk tinge. But there’s a lot of other stuff in there, like post-punk, so it’s hard to say. I don’t know if I can think of a band that we sound like. We don’t want to sound exactly like any other band; we just like to sound like a mixture of all our favorite music.
PM: Do you think it’s better for people who have never heard you to pick up the CD or see you guys live?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: If you see us live and then listen to the CD, you’ll see different sides of the band. Live, we try to put one hundred percent into every single night. It’s a lot more aggressive, almost violent. There’s more screaming going on and other things that aren’t on the record. Once you’ve seen it live, then get the record.
PM: What made you guys sign with Domino?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: It’s more about what reasons we didn’t have for signing with them. They were kind of our favorite U.K. label. All my favorite bands are from Domino, and there was interest from the very beginning.
PM: Speaking of Franz Ferdinand, how has the tour been so far?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: AB: It’s been amazing.
PM: Is it tough opening up for them because they’re so huge now and since you’re often linked with them? Do you think a lot of guys expect Sons and Daughters to sound like Franz Ferdinand?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: AB: Possibly, but I think it’s great that we sound nothing like them, too. But there are structures of the songs that are very poppy.
PM: There must have been some bad things on the tour, no, like the tour bus breaking down?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: Well, our van got towed in Minneapolis. It got towed away. The next day, one of the people who came to our gig gave us a hamper filled with tea and biscuits and things that we’d been missing from home. It also had a couple of pints of milk, which was in the van when it got towed, and we forgot about the milk. And just after it got towed, we picked up the van and the milk exploded as our friend Leslie was driving down the highway. That was pretty bad.
PM: Wait, that gift was from a fan?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: Yeah, it was lovely.
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: Yeah. She said, “Here’s a basket of stuff that you may miss from home.”
PM: Was she Scottish?
Sons and Daughters: Part One: SP: No, she was American. But she knew Stevie Jackson from Belle and Sebastian, and he recommended that she see Franz Ferdinand and Sons and Daughters. So she did the drive just to see us. Very nice.