The Scarlet Ending, a six piece indie and pop rock band reigning from Syracuse, New York have been taking the scene by storm since forming nearly a decade ago. The band is composed of sisters Kaleena and Kayleigh Goldsworthy, Jon Tedd, Aaron Garritillo, Jess Hafner, and Nick Streeter. In 2005, The Scarlet Ending released their first self-titled EP which won them the Syracuse Area Music Award for Best Pop Record. Their 2006 release Cries & Whispers featured the hit track "The Way We Used To Be" which appeared on shows such as The Hills and Tool Academy. The Scarlet Ending are currently signed to Fierce Little Records and released their second full length album, Ghosts, on April 6, 2010. Since then, the band has made two music videos for tracks off Ghosts including "Phoenix" and "Exactly What You Want".
They're certainly not a new band, but Buzznet wanted to ask them some questions to introduce them to the Buzznet crowd.
BUZZNET: Being based in Syracuse, New York, how would you say your surroundings have influenced your music?
KALEENA: Our surroundings influenced our music in a very interesting way; we knew that in order to get noticed, we needed to do something different and earn their attention. Syracuse has a huge cover band scene, a blues scene, and a very tight knit hardcore scene. We didn't really fit in anywhere, so we had to work very hard to get people to notice what we were doing.
B: Where in your city do you go when you want to be inspired?
KALEENA: I like sitting down in places where the world is moving around me, where I can just be a fly on the wall. Also, when I'm driving – maybe the most inopportune time.
B: How would you describe The Scarlet Ending's sound?
KAYLEIGH: I’d describe our sound as a dark, cabaret rock. We definitely write pop songs, but I think the way we go about executing them is what makes us a little bit different, and lyrically it's a bit more dark and cryptic.
B: If you guys could score a movie, what genre do you think your music would be most suited for?
KAYLEIGH: Some kind of dark fantastical movie. We were raised on very theatrical bands (Genesis, Queen, David Bowie, etc), so we try and include a bit of drama into our sound. And the film would probably have to be a little twisted too!
B: Can you tell us one interesting fact about each member of your band?
KAYLEIGH-- Has a serious baking habit and an unexplained subscription to “Horse Illustrated” magazine that just won't go away.
KALEENA-- Writing a zombie rock opera
JON-- A fantastic, fantastic cook and hosts the vegan cooking webshow “The Vegan Zombie” (http://theveganzombie.com/)
AARON-- Plays Magic cards and Dungeons & Dragons for a living
JESS-- Likes fruity drinks and knows more about plants than we will ever know about anything in this world
NICK-- A fantastic dancer and a karaoke king
B: With such an eclectic mix of instruments in the band (violin, cello, piano, ukulele), are there any instruments you aim to add in the future?
KAYLEIGH: I think when it comes time to record we can delve even deeper into that. I'd love to include some tympani, or even some brass or horns on a few songs. I think we still view the creation and arrangement process as limitless, its more how we choose to scale back so that we don't end up with, like, 25 people in the band. B: What was the inspiration behind your music video for "Phoenix"?
KALEENA: We really let our good friend and director CJ Wallis take the lead on that one. It was loosely based off of Fahrenheit 451. I think the concept of the video is fantastic, and lends a lot to the viewer’s imagination. He also shot the video for our single, “Exactly What You Want,” which is a bit more straightforward.
B: What would you say is your favorite music video of all time? (By another artist)
KAYLEIGH: For nostalgia’s sake, it would be "Just a Girl" by No Doubt or "A Long December" by The Counting Crows. That’s when we were very into watching music videos and both of those bands influenced me tremendously. More recently, "Monster Hospital" by Metric or Mother Mother's "Hayloft" or "O My Heart."
B: What has been the most positive feedback (coolest compliment?) you've received about Ghosts?
KAYLEIGH: The opportunity to play for the troops on our international USO tour was amazing, and to continue to receive emails from them on a daily basis telling us what our music has done for them while they were away... that's been the most fulfilling experience and best feedback. And the fact that we created this album over the course of years in our studio, thinking it would get heard by maybe one tenth the people who actually heard it... it's an amazing, humbling, and truly incredible feeling.
B: Who would you kill to collaborate with in the future?
KAYLEIGH: I would love to work with Colin Meloy of The Decemberists, I love how their band has such a unique sound, how they can go from epic album like "Hazards of Love" to a stripped down but equally powerful album like "The King is Dead" without losing anything. Or Ben Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie, he’s one of those songwriters that makes you sit back and say, "Damn... I wish I wrote that."
B: What are you guys up to right now? How will The Scarlet Ending be spending their summer?
KALEENA: We are putting a new album together! We will be spending our summer writing and arranging, and also working on an acoustic version of "Ghosts." And BBQ’ing. We will definitely be BBQ’ing.