Pree is a band that actually sounds better in the day. The D.C. group’s psychedelic folk isn’t too weird or too meandering for a sunny afternoon. So seeing Pree at 5 p.m. on a Tuesday afternoon at the 2011 CMJ Music Marathon in New York City sounded like a sure bet. It wasn’t exactly.
One of a handful of D.C. acts playing this year’s CMJ, Pree happened to be wrapping up a leg of a tour. They performed at The Living Room to a crowd of about 25 seemingly tired music journalists, college music directors, and other souls taking advantage of the free show. The band didn’t half-ass it, which they easily could have. Instead, they performed as it was just another day on tour, they just happened to be surrounded by a whole lot of eh.
After speaking to singer/guitarist/multi instumentalist Ben Usie and drummer Ethan Brasseaux, it became clear that the band isn’t banking on a musical festival for anything more than a show.
Washington City Paper: Do you have any other shows scheduled for CMJ?
WCP: Why did you decide to play CMJ?
BU: We’ve been on tour the last month and we’re going to be on tour next month. It was a good middle stop. We just released an album today. This was probably a good way to release it.
WCP: Would you have come if you weren’t on tour?
BU: Probably. Our label is centered in New York so it makes sense. They have connections to management and it’s a lot easier for them to get the word out.
WCP: Was it weird to play at 5pm?
Ethan Brasseaux: It was nice.
BU: I did have to drink a few beers beforehand. We played The Living Room before so we were happy to be back.
WCP: Is there anyone you’re looking forward to seeing?
EB: I always like seeing Givers.
WCP: Is D.C. a good place to be in a band?
BU: It’s done a lot of good things for us. We have a lot of really good friends that are doing really great musical things.
Pree’s new album “Folly” is now available on Paper Garden Records.