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Interview with Raccoon Tour


Raccoon Tour photographed by Ezra Elias
Raccoon Tour photographed by Ezra Elias

Raccoon Tour is the musical brainchild of Boise, Idaho native Nate Burr. Combining elements of nostalgia, fantasy, and mischief, with influences ranging from indie, punk, emo, electronic, skramz and pop music, Raccoon Tour is setting out to create a unique world for listeners to explore. With their debut album 'The Dentonweaver' on the way and two new singles, I caught up with Nate to talk about the creation of this album, working with Brett Romnes, and his favourite memory from recording the album.


Hi, how are you?


I'm recovering from a bit of a cold at the moment. My mouth tastes like medicine and I have a bit of a headache to be honest! But I'll never pass up the opportunity to toot my own horn.


How would you describe your sound to the readers?


Imagine the opposite of what Anthony Fantano would probably enjoy. Imagine Cavetown meets The Used. I'm making music with the sole intention of impressing my old 14 year old self when Elon Musk finally builds a time machine.


Who are your biggest musical influences?


You can definitely hear a bit of 2000's mall emo in our sound. I really like the versatility and song structures of Panic! at the Disco. I like how Twenty One Pilots implement stellar bridges and world building into their music. I love the DIY work ethic of Frank Iero's solo ventures. I love the melodrama and theatrics of My Chemical Romance. I'm also inspired by tons of my fellow Boise, Idaho musicians like the Joyrunners, the Phets, Neocentrics, Illicit Nature, A Residual Affinity, and tons more I don't have room to list here.


How did Raccoon Tour’s musical journey start?


I spent hours and hours in a room by myself on Christmas in 2013 when I got a ukulele that morning. I tried to cover "Sleeping Lessons" by The Shins and wound up writing my first song Sofarinrunning a few months later. I wrote dozens of songs through my high school years in notebooks and voice memos. I finally recorded Sofarinrunning in 2018 for my senior project in high school. I threw it online for kicks and giggles, it kinda blew up by my town's standards, and the rest is history.


Your debut album ‘The Dentonweaver’ is released on December 3rd via Surrender Records, congratulations! What was the process of working on this album like for you?


Oh my god. It's been recorded 3 times to get it just right. This project has been in the works for like 7-8 years. It's been frustrating and time consuming and expensive. It was crafted through the most formative years of my life so it changed and warped over and over again. There are hundreds of memes on Instagram and Twitter revolving around how long this has taken to make. I had a revolving door of musicians who performed various parts of the songs and they all put their flairs on every version. What we released was the last iteration of the recording process where I took all I'd learned and threw it at the wall. We recorded the final album in 5 days which is kind of unheard of apparently. I'm super proud of it.


Album Artwork for The Dentonweaver
Album Artwork for The Dentonweaver

Would you say the singles we’ve heard so far ‘Horrorshow’ and ‘Dentonweaver’ are an accurate representation of what the overall sound of the album will be?


I definitely think Dentonweaver is a better representation of what the album feels like in my opinion. Horrorshow is a fun and bouncy song for sure, but Dentonweaver is more of a stylistic boot camp that covers so many different sounds, scopes, and vibes. It's super dynamic and encompasses the themes and feel of the album more fully in my opinion. The Dentonweaver is exciting, nostalgic, spacey, sad... all different elements that makes the album something I'm proud of. It's my favorite song on the album.


This album is said to be “a whirlwind adventure through the tribulations of childhood, class consciousness, responsibility, and ultimately death” which is one way to make us all intrigued to know more, can you explain more behind your concept for this album? And why are these themes the ones you wanted to write about in these songs?


The Dentonweaver is the product of my teen years. Sneaking out at night, petty crime, going on adventures with friends, laying on the high school football field at 2 AM with a crush, mental health breakdowns, all that jazz fed into the scenes and themes explored. There are so many raw emotions and warm bittersweet nostalgic callbacks that I share here, most of them based on real events that took place in my teen years. I personify a lot of the events through the masked characters on all of our artwork. There's even a full story that follows the tracklisting and artwork that I'm excited to share more about in the upcoming months.


What was it like to work with Brett Romnes on this album?


Brett was a master. He knew what I wanted before I said it. It was like he had the same song in his head as I did while recording and mixing. Dude is a legend to not only work with but also hang out with. It was just the two of us for a lot of the recording process and he was super accommodating and professional. It was my first time in a legit expensive studio and he taught me a lot about the process. He was patient and funny and empathetic. I can't sing his praises enough. He's becoming a serious force in the genre working with so many amazing acts too. I'm proud of him and I couldn't have asked for a better producer.


‘Horrorshow’ seems upbeat and fun from a musical standpoint but lyrically I think even the title can juxtapose this, what was the main inspiration behind this song?


Horrorshow is kind of a microcosm of my childhood, beginning with a brief description of a true story where I jumped out of my window when Mom came home unexpectedly while I was making out with my girlfriend. Growing up, there are a lot of confusing and conflicting emotions as you're figuring stuff out. At the end of the day when you're on your deathbed or whatever, it's those memories and experiences you have that mean anything to you. I'm glad I have lots of good memories to reflect on when I'm in that position someday. I'd say it's more of an optimistic song at its core.



Do you have a favourite lyric or line from the song? I love the opening verse of the song, and the literal and metaphorical meaning of those lines.


From Horrorshow, my favorite lyrics would probably be "And every story of indecent glory are all I'll have left when I am old." It really lays out the central theme I have in mind for this song as well as the album at large.


Why did you decide this was to be the first single from the album?


Truth be told, I was originally campaigning for Dentonweaver to be the first single released. However, when you're releasing an album that you've invested tons of time, effort, and money into, it's generally not the smartest move to make a 4 and a half minute long dense exhaustive rock song as your lead single. Horrorshow felt like a more sensible choice since it was consistently a favorite amongst most people who listened to the album.


The second single ‘Dentonweaver’ has just dropped, and this song is like the title track of the album. I love the nostalgic atmosphere of this one, it’s energetic and I can imagine it would sound great when played live. What’s something you hope listeners will take away from listening to this song?


Dentonweaver is a BLAST to play live. I hope someday the audience is able to sing the closing anthem with us and fill the room. I really hope audiences keep an ear out for the shifting tones and soundscapes since I feel they serve as a great blueprint for the entire album's sound. And for the love of god I hope they learn the outro and sing it with us. Please. I'm begging. It'd be so cool. Please.

Can you explain more about the inspiration behind the lyrics for this song?


This song is kind of a Frankenstein's monster, where it's a collection of tons of different ideas I've had over the years all glued together. The lyrics were pieced together the same way. Truth be told I'm not entirely sure what the song is about. There's some stuff about disassociation, meditations on death, all that bummer stuff that we keep calling back to throughout the album. I guess I keep reiterating this: Dentonweaver is definitely a microcosm of the whole album.



Do you have a favourite memory from recording this album?


I asked my friend Jordan Thornquest to help me record this album years and years ago. He said yes, probably assuming I had a plan of action in mind. We wound up spending years going back and forth spending HUNDREDS of hours in his studio. It was frustrating for the both of us, but we also had a blast hanging out together as well. We became good friends and I enjoyed spending so much time and getting to know him better. He wound up becoming one of the people I admire most in this silly world. So I'd say "Jordan Thornquest" is my favorite memory. What a special guy he is.


And lastly, what have you been listening to recently? Is there anything you want to recommend to us?


I've been listening to the album "Camping" by a small band called the Dogs. It's existential, big, fun, and full of so many incredible ideas. It's an album I wish I had written. I've also been listening to Motion City Soundtrack's "Commit This To Memory." It's been one of my favourite albums since I was 14. It's heartbreaking and becomes more and more impactful as I grow older. I'm excited to see it live this February in Denver!


Thank you so much for taking the time to answer these questions for us, it’s really appreciated!


And thank you for having me onboard! Keep doing the lord's work! We need more folks like you in the world. Be well and be safe!


Raccoon Tour photographed by Ezra Elias
Raccoon Tour photographed by Ezra Elias

You can listen to 'Horrorshow' and 'Dentonweaver' now, and the album 'The Dentonweaver' will be out on December 3rd via Surrender Records.


Listen to Horrorshow on Spotify here.

Listen to Dentonweaver on Spotify here.


Follow Raccoon Tour on Spotify here.

Follow Raccoon Tour on Instagram here.


All After Midnight links here.


Music submissions and enquiries to aftermidnightblog1@gmail.com

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