In Session: Adequate Phil

ALBANY – Adequate Phil, with their upcoming single, “Can’t Not,” due for release on April 20th, are creating something unique and genre-bending. Utilizing various modalities found in Eastern and Western music, along with prog-rock and hip-hop aesthetics, there’s a lot that is crammed into not only this single, but the band itself.

We, over at Nippertown, were excited to get an exclusive listen and glimpse into the band’s creation. Getting a chance to sit down with the band prior to its release, it was my pleasure to delve into a chat on the band’s beginnings, influences, upcoming shows, and plans for the future. To catch our discussion, continue reading ahead.

Adequate Phil, back row, from left-to-right: Phil McGrath, Sean McLaughlin; front row: Runey Ghosh.

Lucas Garrett: Thank you, everyone, for sitting down! Why don’t we go down the line and introduce one another?

Phil McGrath: I’m Phil and I play guitar and bass in the band. I’m also the one mixing and mastering the songs.

Runey Ghosh: I’m Runey/L Niño. I cover the production and writing side of things in the band. I play guitar, percussion and sing.

Sean McLaughlin: I’m Sean and I provide the samples, and ambient sounds, as well as some vocals. I also create the artwork.

LG: How’d the band get started?

SM: It got started with me and Runey jamming once a week. This was right after the pandemic.

RG: We met because me and Sean were part of an artist collective in Troy. When that broke up and dissolved, we stayed in touch and kept doing creative things.

SM: We started once a week, and we realized we had something going. Then, we brought in Phil…

PM: I was living in Boston for the last six years, but I’m originally from this area. I moved back last summer and the rest is history.

LG: Nice. So, I heard your latest upcoming single, “Can’t Not,” that’s coming out on April 20th. Pretty cool stuff you have going on there; a lot of different modalities and influences happening there. Why don’t you tell us about who influences you?

RG: Me, personally, influence-wise depends on what aspect of music you’re talking about. Production-wise, I really like Animal Collective, The Beach Boys, Danger Mouse. Lyrically, for example, I really like The Beatles and The Shins. In a live setting, I enjoy more jammy bands, like Lotus and Papadosio. Vocals-wise, it’s Death Cab for Cutie; maybe a little Britney Spears mixed in there, with Radiohead.

LG: A little all over the map, there!

SM: In terms of samples, I’m really influenced by The Books and their use of samples. Also, early Panda Bear – I have a SP404 and that’s what I like to mess around with. Likewise, in terms of production, it’s Animal Collective and Danger Mouse.

PM: What about me?

RG: What ABOUT you, actually?!

[everyone laughs]

PM: Lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of technical stuff; prog-rock and jazz. I think that’s what brings a nice element – I try to be a little more technical and tighter on rhythm, whereas these guys bring a nice loose, ambient space that sits on top of it. It ends up being a really cool collaboration.

LG: What kind of progressive rock do you like?

PM: Lately, there’s a guy out of Switzerland, Jakub Zytecki. He does really cool stuff. I’ve been listening to a lot of Animals of Leaders; that’s some heavy metal stuff.

LG: What’s in store for you guys? You have the single cming out in three weeks. What else do you guys have going on? Any shows?

RG: We started playing in earnest this year. We really played our debut show at 518 Craft back in January. Then, we’re set to play the Troy Speakeasy on April 23rd, shortly after the release of “Can’t Not.” We’re trying to scout out shows. Since we’re all a little bit older, we’re not in college or in our younger twenties, we’re pretty limited, schedule-wise. But, we’re trying to book as many shows as we can, given those parameters.

LG: As far as producing your stuff, is that all DIY, or have you gone into a studio?

PM: We do it all here within this room. Runey’s got a Scarlett Focusrite digital interface and connect our instruments to it. Runey does a lot of the production; he’s integrating all the sounds together. For our first couple tracks, we sent them out to get mixed and mastered by a buddy of Runey’s, David Tyo. For this last one, we did it all in-house.

LG: How do you feel about that process? Is it more of a hinderance, or is it helpful?

RG: I guess it depends on the aspect. For this track, Phil had to learn how to mix and master; I leant him my studio monitors. Production-wise, I enjoy the freedom of being in my apartment. I’ve tried recording in a semi-studio setting, but I enjoy the freedom… You’re not seeing dollar signs burn with each hour, you know what I mean?

LG: Yeah.

RG: I don’t know, for me it’s just quicker. That’s just from a production aspect, I don’t know what your mixing experience has been like, Phil.

PM: It’s been a lot of learning – which is great. I prefer doing it all in-house; we have complete control over the sound. We can go at the pace we need to; we’re not pressured to do certain things at certain times. It allows the creativity to flow a little better.

LG: What else would you like to talk about tonight, as we wrap this up?

SM: Our next show will be at the Speakeasy in Troy on April 23rd. We have another song we’re working on that I’m very excited about, “Peaches.” That’ll be the next single!

LG: Sounds great. I can’t wait to hear more. Thanks, everyone!

RG: Thank you so much for your interest! We appreciate it!

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