There’s so much to say about Early Morning Rebel. They’re talented guys with industry experience and knowledge that it’s going to take hardwork to achieve the success they ultimately deserve. But they must be doing something right as they’ve had their single picked up by Grey’s Anatomy, have had guest roles on Parenthood, have been featured in WWD, Details, Esquire, the CUT, HuffPo, Style.com, and several more.
This past New York Fashion Week, Early Morning Rebel and I met up at the Empire Hotel and discussed their admiration for fashion, their music and how they’d love to collaborate with Fun.
Tell us a bit about how you guys got started and your history.
Nate: Yeah, Dustin and I were old, old childhood friends so we were playing since then. And a year and a few months ago we wanted to start a new band so we brought Josh in as the drummer and the keyboardist and we started writing and recording in our studio in Venice. We started recording songs and the first song we recorded was the song Life Boat and we sent it out to a few of our friends in the industry and people we trust. And it so happened thatGrey’s Anatomy called and wanted to use that song. That was the first catalyst of momentum for us. Since then, we’ve gone to London Fashion Week twice, Paris [Fashion Week]; this is our first time at New York. We did a UK tour, a couple West Coast tours – so we’re trying to keep the momentum and do what we love.
What’s you inspiration behind your music?
Josh: It’s kind of dark. Nate does a lot of the lyrics. He starts out with an idea and I think that what we really try to do is capture honesty. There’s so much surface level music [out there] that Nate writes with a lot of depth and Dustin is great at producing our records that it gives us something we can hold onto and like, and appreciate and say this is who we are.
Nate: It just depends on what we’re surrounded by at the time, but anything can really inspire our music. Great fashion to awesome art to great films. Then obviously we listen to a lot of music. We’re inspired throughout the day; and that’s one of the reasons we’re here at fashion week. We love to come to fashion week to get inspired by what designers do, which helps us draw inspiration for our own stuff which is obviously music.
So talk to me about your own personal style. Who are your favorite designers and what designers never let you down?
Nate: Designers that never let us down… Well, we’re huge fans of Hedi Slimane, who is probably our favorite at the moment. But I think being huge fans of fashion, it’s not necessarily what our personal tastes would be, sometimes we’re just drawn to people taking a lot of risks. And obviously womenswear is something we don’t wear, but we appreciate it.
Dustin: There’s a great designer in LA called Mattison. They have a store on Melrose Place. It’s all handmade, beautifully tailored suits and shirts.
Nate: He [points to Dustin] is wearing a shirt right now.
Dustin: Yeah, this is a Mattison shirt and pants.
We heard you have a huge celebrity following. Tell us a few people who are following you or support you.
Nate: You know being from LA and being raised in LA, it’s the entertainment Mecca capital of the world, especially in the TV and film industry. So we have a lot of friends that are everything from executive producers on huge television shows to writers and directors to actors and music supervisors and grips and lighting guys. Our life is surrounded by the entertainment industry because it’s where we’re from. It’s like if we were from rural Iowa, most of our friends would probably be farmers. Growing up, both my parents were actors, Dustin’s parents work in the industry, so it’s not like a name dropping thing – it’s just what seems normal to us.
Do you appreciate what you do more because you’ve seen it every day of your life and you know how hard these people work, than an outsider coming in just to become famous?
Nate: Yeah, we really know what it takes and we know, kind of, the smoke and mirrors. We’ve worked in so many facets of the industry that we know what really goes in to make a production. So I think there is some value and some wisdom that we know from all that stuff.
Dustin: There is no overnight success. These are people who have been working hard for a really long time.
Nate: Like that band Fun. who won the GRAMMY. They’ve been around for about 12 years. Yeah, these bands have been around forever. So we know how much work it takes to get to a certain place. You know, we’ve been really lucky as we’re pretty new as a band, but as musicians and people in the industry, we’ve been doing it for a long time. So we’ve learned what works and what doesn’t work; what inspires us and what doesn’t inspire us; what we’re interested in what we’re not interested in – a lot of trial and error.
You have two singles out now. When does your album come out?
Nate: We’re actually going to be releasing an EP in the summer. And we have another full length record that we’re working on as well that will probably be out late 2013 or early 2014. But the EP will be a five song EP. Now available on iTunes is Life Boat EP and Burn Us Downand those both have videos that Dustin directed.
So you’re a director too?
Dustin: Yeah, I am. It’s another thing that’s great for us that we get to do the music and we love film and photography and all that. So we get to take our visual inspirations and aesthetics and put it to our music.
If you could do collaboration with anyone right now, who would it be?
Dustin: Adele would be cool.
Nate: Yeah, Adele would be cool for a duet. After seeing the GRAMMYs we’re fans of everyone from Fun. to Alabama Shakes and all those bands. But we’d love to remixes with Phoenix andFun. We have a huge palette when it comes to music, so we’re really open.
Available now on iTunes is Life Boat EP and Burn Us Down.