My general plan at SXSW was to get a feel for the festival, but at a party I met someone from Happy Robot Records. They emailed me about interviewing The Solutions and I agreed. I met Naru, Hansol, and Ohkyung at their hotel. Unfortunately Sol was delayed getting to the interview, but I had a great conversation about the band, Movements, and their experience in the United States. I recorded the interview with my NEX-F3 to grab the audio. This is a transcribed interview with edits made for clarity.
Can you introduce the band?
Naru: We are The Solutions. I am Naru, I play guitar and create arrangements.
Hansol: I am Hansol and I play drums.
Ohkyung: I am Ohkyung on bass.
Naru: And our other member is Park Sol on vocals.
There were two years between The Solutions and Movements, was there a reason for the gap?
Naru: We don’t actually think it takes that long. It took the proper time because we learned a lot during that period at live shows and making arrangements for those shows. We think it was the exact time.
Were there any expectations with Movements?
Naru: In my case, I studied synthesizer and that affected the second album a lot. And I heard a lot of bands that used synthesizer so that affected the second album.
What was the first song you wrote for the second album?
Naru: I can’t really remember.. “Answer” was actually was written during the first album, but we thought that song wasn’t done yet. So we kept it and developed it after the first album during lives.
Is there a big difference between the CD and a live show?
Naru: It’s more energetic. The base is almost the same, but we have a bigger and rocking sound. More guitar and especially drums.
When you record, what do you record first?
Naru: Before we had four members, during recording the first album, Sol and I did the base of the songs. While I play guitar riffs or chords, he would do a melody, and we would develop it together. “Oh that’s good” or “that’s bad” kind of way.
What was the reaction to the “Movements” music video?
Naru: Some people didn’t expect the sound, but a lot of people liked it because the songwriting base didn’t change too much. Just the arrangements were different. The base of the song only with guitar and melody is the most important thing so we thought the color didn’t change too much.
This is your first time in the US and you went to Miami. Did you record something new?
Naru: We recorded one new song. Maybe it will be released during the Summer. We don’t know if it will be with other songs or just a single.
How was Miami?
Hasol: It was comfortable and a lot of fun.
Naru: It was very comfortable and relaxed. We recorded pretty well. In Korea there is an embarrassment or hurrying feeling. Here, there is a more relaxed mood and the engineer enjoys our music and thought of how to work with each other in a groovy mood. Even during mixing he danced and said “that’s cool” all the time.
What did you think of Miami, like the beach?
Naru: So beautiful.
Hansol: I want to live there.
What did you eat there?
Hansol: We had hamburger or pizza. Very salty.
When did you arrive in Austin?
Naru: On Monday.
What was you impression of the show at Geeks From Gangnam?
Naru: A lot of people enjoyed our show even though they were watching us for the first time. There was a good reaction to us at the end. At the after show party, a lot of people said “that was a good show” or “I bought your CD.” The other bands were good too like Asian Chairshot and No Brain. They had some experiences before so they had an idea how to do overseas shows.
Hansol: I was very happy because it was the first time playing.
Naru: Everyone was impressive.
What do you think of people getting interested in Korean bands?
Naru: The past few years, a lot of bands had interest in doing overseas shows like the US or Japan. I think it’s another way to show music. Band music still isn’t popular in other countries. I think a band like us should do more aggressive or more intended work in Korea, but also have shows overseas. Anyway it’s a good experience for us.
Would you want to do a full US tour?
Naru: That’s a good experience.
Hansol: I really hope it happens.
Naru: If the time and money isn’t too high, then it would be good. We wish to do that someday. It would be good, not only for America, but also for Korea for our growth. Our inner growth especially. How to do music with totally strange people. I think that would help us.
Anything to say to readers?
Naru: Openly listen to any kind of music, Korean music especially bands like us.
Hansol: Especially The Solutions and Hologram Film.
Naru: You won’t be disappointed. I hope to see you guys in America and all around the world more frequently.