“Falling Into Skies,” the debut single from Philly scene newcomers Queue, is like waking up. First, your pupils contract, adjusting to the light. Then your surroundings slowly come into focus, but you’re still groggy.
Queue perfectly captures this feeling of early-morning haze. Singer Olivia Price’s voice is thick and smooth, lethargically holding on to syllables at the ends of phrases. Even the drums have a muted quality to them.
The five-piece is split between D.C. and Philly, but you wouldn’t know it from how cohesive “Falling Into Skies” sounds. Although three-fifths of Queue currently works in corporate, nine-to-five jobs, the goal is to one day all live in the same city and focus on the band. It’s still early, but after listening to “Falling Into Skies,” that proposition doesn’t sound all too unreasonable. In the month since its release, the track has received over 5,000 listens on Soundcloud and has been picked up by radio stations in both the U.K. and France.
In other words, Queue is a band you’re going to want to keep on your radar. They’re in the process of booking some Philly shows in the summer, but for now are focusing on writing and recording. Their next single, “More,” is slated for release on May 24. In June, they’ll release a debut five-track EP.
The Key recently caught up with the band — Olivia Price (vocals/rhythm guitar), Tyler Ringland (vocals/keys), Aida Mekonnen (lead guitar), Dan Snelling (bass), and Steve Vannelli (drums) — over email. Read our interview below.
The Key: I was just browsing through your band Twitter, and saw something about Olivia and Stephen going back to PSU. Did they meet in college? How did the rest of the band get together?
Queue: We actually all met in college (Penn State main campus) in the local music scene. Steve and Olivia were in a band called Fairweather Pilots, and Tyler and Aida were in a band called Flashback Forward. Everyone became fast friends and bonded over their love of kitschy 80s pop-rock music. Dan was a childhood friend of Tyler’s and decided to spontaneously learn the bass to fill out the sound. Truly, though, we’re all best friends, which is what makes this band so much fun.
TK: I really enjoyed your first single, “Falling Into Skies.” It’s super well produced, and it’s got a catchy dream-pop sound that manages to stay grounded with some nice guitar riffs and drums. It reminded me a bit of early Beach House, when they had a stronger rock influence. Who would you describe as your biggest musical influences?
Queue: Wow! Super flattered by the Beach House comparison. We all listen to very different styles of music, but I’d say we meet in the middle with a love for Fleetwood Mac, David Bowie, Gorillaz (for the dope basslines), and Foals.
TK: Were you able to record “Falling Into Skies” together, or did you work on it from your separate cities? The fact that you guys don’t all live in the same place reminded me of A Sunny Day In Glasgow (apparently the whole band was never entirely together while they recorded their most recent album, Sea When Absent). Can you guys relate to those logistical difficulties at all?
Queue: We all went to Degraw Sound in Brooklyn, to record “Falling Into Skies” with producer Ben Rice. There are difficulties in trying to develop a song while in different locations, but we try to flesh out the demos as much as possible when we meet to rehearse.
TK: What are the challenges in general of being a band that is split in two cities?
Queue: There are a lot of restrictions that interrupt organic songwriting. We try to stay in regular contact with one another via video calls and bouncing song ideas back and forth on google drive. However, those impersonal communicative mediums prolong things that could otherwise be pretty quick and painless if we were consistently together. When we meet up, we’ll knock out a whole bunch of things, but scheduling and the cost of traveling to and from each other is overall limiting.
TK: What is your songwriting/composition process like? Would you say the band is the creative project of one person in particular, or is it entirely a group effort?
Queue: Typically one person starts out with a basic structure, uploads the file to Google drive, and then everyone hops on and helps produce it further. We don’t have one primary song-writer. We really like collaborating throughout the process, so we all have a say in the direction.