I walk into a small, cozy house in South Austin to find out more about Food Group‘s new EP titled You Are with the band’s lead singer and guitarist, Eric Lyday. The latest EP contains three tracks and is the perfect combination of the classic Food Group sound and psychedelic electronic. Lyday and I sat to discuss Food Group’s evolution in the Austin music scene and how the group is collaborating with some big names to get the recognition they deserve.
Jack: Who currently makes up Food Group?
E: Luis Rangel is on bass and backs the vocals, Jeffery Olson plays the drums, Wiley Greene is our new keyboardist, and Chris Donahue plays the vibraphone, keyboard, and sang in the first EP Dire.
J: Tell me a little about you, Eric.
E: I’m a music teacher when I’m not performing. Currently, I’m doing an after school music program, and I’ll also teach private lessons.
J: How long was You Are in the works for?
E: It was written in July 2014 right before we recorded Echo Location. James Petralli from White Denim heard us play at the Whip In and offered to help with the overdubbing, mixing and production of You Are. He is a very honest and transparent man and offered critical feedback during the entire process. Hanging out and working in Ronjo Studios was an amazing experience and our relationship with James is something we would like to continue in the future.
J: What is your favorite track off the EP?
E: The CAPYAC remix is fucking amazing. They turn the song into a completely different thing that I didn’t know it could be. It could easily be played at a club and everyone would be dancing.
J: Has the EP been performed live?
E: The CAPYAC remix was performed live during SXSW last year. Hopefully, we can both get together during Free Week this year and perform the EP in its entirety. The opportunity to perform MLKBLVD live just hasn’t presented itself yet. The piece was composed on a computer using various live performances.
J: Where will ya’ll go from here?
E: We are working on a full-length album at the moment that will include “You Are.” It will not be the exact same version and we will begin recording in December in a brand new location.
J: What is different about the You Are EP?
Eric – Actually pretty interesting: James Petralli sang the backup vocals for “You Are” at the three minute mark.
J: How did you guys come up with the name for Food Group?
E: (laughs) Honestly there really isn’t an answer. Partly because before and after practicing, we would always go out for food together. We especially love 888 on Oltorf.
J: Any other locals who helped with this project?
E: Blake Bohls supplied the gorgeous cover art, and, of course, we couldn’t have done it without the surrealistic disco sounds coming from Delwin Campbell and Eric Peana [from CAPYAC]. Fun fact: Wiley Greene played tuba on MLKBLVD!
J: (Sees a record player in the corner of the room) What are you listening to currently?
E: Here We Go Magic–they just came to town put on a great show at the Sidewinder.
Food Group’s EP You Are is available through Bandcamp.