Indie Mixtape 20: Enumclaw Are Looking To Change The Game

The Pacific Northwest was a hotbed for breakout rock bands in the ’90s and early aughts. Nirvana is the obvious first pick, but there was also Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters, Sleater-Kinney… the list truly goes on. Since that time period, the number of exciting rock bands hailing from the area has dwindled, in part thanks to Big Tech taking over cities like Seattle. But now, there’s a new buzzy band resurrecting the gritty sound the PNW earned a reputation for: Enumclaw.

Though Enumclaw hail from the birthplace of grunge music, their upcoming debut album Save The Baby (out Friday) is peppered with a range of influences from melodic Brit pop — Enumclaw once called themselves “the best band since Oasis” — to driving pop punk and experimental art-rock acts like Yves Tumor. Celebrating the release of their debut album, Enumclaw lead singer Aramis Johnson sits down with Uproxx to talk Tyler The Creator, bad tattoos, and sleeping in a Walmart parking lot in our latest Q&A.

What are four words you would use to describe your music?

Guitar, drums, bass, Aramis

It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?

As part of a really sick era, like, “Aw when this sh*t came out they changed the game.”

What’s your favorite city in the world to perform?

Probably NYC, the whole “oh sh*t I’m in New York” thing hasn’t gotten old yet.

Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?

Probably my mom. No success really matters ’till I buy moms a crib.

Where did you eat the best meal of your life?

Roscoe’s House of Chicken ‘N Waffles.

What album do you know every word to?

Discovery by Daft Punk.

What was the best concert you’ve ever attended?

So far, Tyler The Creator at Climate Pledge Arena is my number one. I for sure cried.

What is the best outfit for performing and why?

Being an outfitted person I can’t say there’s one perfect fit for shows. There’s so many levels to what your fit can be doing for you on stage, like you could be in some big denim, a pair of vans, and a white tee jumping around all comfy and that gets the job done but you’re just gonna be blending in with the other band dudes. I’d say the best on stage fits are practical but have some sort of wow factor.

Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?

I just watch hood videos on Twitter so whoever be posting those.

What’s your most frequently played song in the van on tour?

We got a couple but the most cooked song in the van is “Bad Habit” by Steve Lacy.

What’s the last thing you Googled?

“Mitsubishi eclipse” and I have no clue why.

What album makes for the perfect gift?

I feel like if someone gifted me Yeezus on CD I’d be really happy so I’m gonna go with that.

Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?

It wasn’t that weird but for sure the wackest place we crashed was a Walmart parking lot deep in Ohio. We didn’t know how to pack the van yet either so I specifically remember sleeping with a hi-hat stand in my back.

What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?

It’s pretty short, the home girl D tatted Badtz-Maru on my leg in my brother Xay’s basement room. It honestly looks kinda bad now but I feel like if you’ve never got a bad tattoo you’re not really getting the full experience.

What artists keep you from flipping the channel on the radio?

On the off chance I listen to the radio I put on the dance music station, they don’t be saying their names sooo whoever’s got the nice chords stays on.

What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?

I can’t really pick just one, my whole family has been blessing me up since birth.

What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?

Skate vans half cabs.

What’s the last show you went to?

Yves Tumor.

What movie can you not resist watching when it’s on TV?

I’ve probably watched the first Robocop like 5 times just on TV.

What’s one of your hidden talents?

I know how to ride a unicycle.

Save The Baby is out 10/14 via Luminelle Recordings. Pre-order it here.