Well-Connected

CONDUITS with CURSIVE and CYMBALS EAT GUITARS

Monday, April 9 at 8 p.m.

Café Eleven, 501 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine

Tickets are $16

460-9311

The first definition isn’t the right one: A pipe or channel for conveying fluids. The second one isn’t quite right either, although it is closer: A tube or duct for enclosing electrical wires or cables. The third one is on the money: A means by which something is transmitted.

That makes perfect sense for the Omaha, Neb., sonic daydream sextet, Conduits — a spooky, beautiful group of musicians who have honed a shoegazer wall of ethereal sound and then carefully crafted it on their new self-titled debut.

Made up of battle-tested indie vets from the Omaha scene, the group creates lush arrangements, tied together by the crisp, angelic voice of lead singer Jenna Morrison. Together they birth something beautiful, transmitting soaring, spacious hums and buzzes across the universe, into clubs and stereos across the land.

Morrison recently spoke to Folio Weekly about the origins of the band, the value of lyrics and how big is sometimes a good thing.

Folio Weekly: What about your new album makes you most proud?

Jenna Morrison: Wow, a lot. First of all, we did a lot of recording in the second bedroom of the house I was living in. The mood really matched the type of music everyone in the band liked. We are all interested in this music, so everything came together very quickly. And I feel like it truly portrays who we are and what we really are into.

F.W.: You haven’t had to alter your musical principles, then?

J.M.: Yeah, it’s very comfortable. I have been in other bands before, but nothing has every struck a chord with me as much as this music does. All of us are on the same page. It leaves me with a good feeling. It sounds cheesy, but it feels like it was meant to be.

F.W.: Everyone comes from different backgrounds?

J.M.: Yes and no. We have all been in different touring bands, and we all have some different tastes. But I think the music that we make is genuinely where we all meet heavily. There is a connection.

F.W.: People use words like “sonic” or “expansive” to explain your music. I personally like “haunting” and “spacey.”

J.M.: We don’t write too many emotional lyrics. The feeling of the music conveys the emotion. It kind of pushes you to feel. We are not a happy-go-lucky band. It is heavily emotional. Big is a good word. That comes across in our live show. Big sounds, big feelings.

F.W.: What about the live show makes it come across bigger?

J.M.: There are six of us. There is a lot going on. It’s loud and encompassing. I think it allows the audience to be part of the music. I really do feel a connection with the audience; we are all feeling the experience of the music.

F.W.: Lyrically speaking, are you glass-half-full or glass-half-empty?

J.M.: For this album, I would say that it’s glass-half-empty, but I wouldn’t say that describes us overall. We are already writing for the next album, and I think it is changing. The lyrics convey a glass-half-empty look at the world, in a literal way. But I wouldn’t say as artists we are that way. We may be drawn to it, but there will be other feelings on the next album.

F.W.: How does being based in Omaha shape your music?

J.M.: We all are influenced by the local artists, those before us. It has definitely helped us. I do feel, though, that we also have taken a lot from the music that we all like outside of the Omaha music scene. If you listen to our music, you’ll hear a wider view of influences, stuff like Portishead and Slow Dive, My Bloody Valentine. It’s so hard to single them out.

F.W.: Have you ever played in St. Augustine?

J.M.: Not that I know of. I can guarantee someone in the band has, but not as [a member of] Conduits.

F.W.: Oh, bummer. I was hoping for some tour gossip.

J.M.: I personally love Florida. It is amazingly beautiful. The musicians in my band that have been there say they have a good time in Florida. They really do bring it up like it’s something special and different from other places.

F.W.: It is like the land of Oz.

J.M.: I guess so.

Danny Kelly

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