Pittsburgh’s thriving rock scene got a little bit better when Carousel formed a few years ago as a result of a mutual love for the genre. After signing to Tee Pee Records earlier this year, they’re set to release their debut LP for the label, Jeweler’s Daughter, tomorrow in conjunction with a show at Belvedere’s, the perfect place to host a gritty rock and roll band and send them on their way before they embark on a European tour. Dave Wheeler, who you may recognize from a fuzzy evening at Brillobox, is the band’s front man and resident plaid-wearing guru. We asked him a few questions about these exciting times for Carousel.
Kymbo Slice: How did Carousel come to be? What is everyone’s relationship?
Dave Wheeler: Basically we came together out of a mutual love of all things rock and a desire to create. Jake and I had already spent time playing in Magic Wolf together, so I knew he would be great for Carousel (he named the band as well), but it took some trial & error before we finalized the lineup with Chris and Jim. I knew Jim was a formidable bass player because I’d seen him play in Harangue, and when I discovered that he shared our passion for the music of the 60s, 70s and 80s, I invited him to play with Jake and I. We found Chris on OkCupid.
KS: What are you looking forward to the most in terms of Friday’s show?
DW: It’ll be an exciting night for us, but I’ll be most excited by the thing that first gave me the music bug almost 25 years ago: another chance to simply play live music.
KS: Jeweler’s Daughter is the title of your debut LP – what is the title referencing and what does this represent to you in terms of being a milestone for Carousel?
DW: The title is taken from one of the songs on the album. I’m usually reluctant to explain my lyrics, for a number of reasons. Primarily, I think that the listener’s interpretation is no less valid than mine, although most of them are inspired by personal experience. I think the lyrics are fairly straightforward. The song’s protagonist has bitten off a little more than he can chew, and is feeling the burn. We chose “Jeweler’s Daughter” as the title of the album because we liked the way it sounded and it gave us an idea for the cover image, but it really wasn’t meant to be indicative of an over-arching theme.
KS: How have you grown as a band since your first live show in 2011?
DW: I think we’ve developed into a tighter band and have solidified our musical identity, but I think we’re still at the beginning of our development. Also Jake and Jim had short hair when the band began, but they’ve both grown it out so they no longer look like total posers.
KS: What’s up next for Carousel?
DW: After our release show on Sept. 6, we’re leaving for a month long European tour as support for Radio Moscow, which with any luck will include mass consumption of schnitzel. Hopefully we can follow up our European tour with some American dates. The schnitzel in the USA isn’t as good, but we have Sheetz here, so we’re pretty excited about that. We’re already in the preliminary stages of planning a second tour of Europe in the spring. Really, we just want to work as hard as we can and take advantage of opportunities as they come along. And eat schnitzel.
Come send Carousel off in a righteously sweaty, loud and drunken fashion tomorrow at Belvedere’s. Locals Zeitgeist and Molasses Barge will be joining them. $8 bucks at the door and it starts at 10PM.