Buffalo, NY’s The Tins weave immediately arresting harmonic anthems through a sonic fabric laced with threads of 1960’s psychedelic pop, static-washed experimental indie-folk, and new-wave art rock. Together, keyboard player and vocalist Mike Santillo, drummer and vocalist Dave Muntner, and guitarist and vocalist Adam Stanley, create their own power pop universe where every note sounds Beatlesque.
The trio have come far since their early days in an underground practice space at New York State’s Binghamton University. The Tins first single, “The Green Room,” became a staple of the Spotify Hipster International Playlist, and received Spotify staff picks #2 song of the year. Life’s A Gas, their debut full length, was written by the band with Modest Mouse producer Joe Blaney. Since then they’ve gone on to work with producer Ted Young (Kurt Vile, The Gaslight Anthem) and have garnered millions of plays across all streaming music services.
Their new eponymous LP (out 6/1/18) was produced by Robby Takac of the Goo Goo Dolls, mixed by Ted Young, and features art by legendary Rolling Stone cover artist Philip Burke. “Robby asked us to play a fundraiser at an Italian restaurant in Buffalo” explains Muntner. “So here we are, The Tins, munching on pasta and cannoli, and Robby walks up and says he likes our sound and wants to produce a song. It was only supposed to be one song. Everyone enjoyed working together so much, and just felt inspired… to create an entire album… so we did it.”
Written initially by the individual members in their respective, sundry garden patches, the songs of The Tins blossomed into their full glory when the band came together to jam in their weird, and possibly haunted practice/living space in the small loft above Mike Santillo Senior’s trucking company. The bulk of the record was tracked at GCR Audio in Buffalo NY, apart from a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “State Trooper”, which was recorded at Santillo Jr’s new Mammoth Recording Studio. The record incorporates a myriad of found sounds, from that of a man playing a high-pitched flute, known as Khlui outside of Chiang Mai, Thailand to a group of children singing outside of the giant Catedral del Cuzco at Plaza de Armas in Cuzco, Peru. Additionally, Takac jumps on for a cameo appearance on the Shamisen, a Japanese string instrument whose body can be played like a drum.
The Tins hold their lyrical narratives close to the vest, but broadly the record grapples with the struggle to free oneself from discontent. “It’s about feeling stuck, the need for freedom and escape,” says Stanley. “‘Jigsaw Queen’ and ‘Minute Of Your Time’ both allude to that in the lyrics, and it’s why we felt “State Trooper” was a good fit. We didn’t write it, but, thematically, it sort of reflects the darker side of the same things we were talking about.” It’s certain that the best way to tease out the filaments of meaning is to ingest the record as a cohesive sonic experience; The Tins is meant to be listened to from end to end in one sitting. “A bit of ambiguity allows people to come to their own conclusions” says Stanley. “I’m sure folks will find some common ground with us somewhere in the record. Mainly, I just want to make people dance. What good is this if you can’t groove to it, you know?”
Glide is thrilled to premiere The Tins new album in its entirety (below) – a collection of eight (no filler) songs that each capture the band’s dynamic songwriting chops and an undeniable ear for melody. With shades of punk anguish and hit me with your first shot song impressions, The Tins, like their band name keep their element simple, genuine and rocking.