I’m pretty much a vampire who can’t face the sunlight, and as such, I need to go into this special little cave. What cave am I referring to? That would be the Cha Cha Lounge, where Lisa Prank, or Robin Edward, played yesterday afternoon (Day 2 of CHBP). The dark, humid and narrow venue was totally crowded. The coquettish red lights and the mixed smell of sweat and cocktails made people’s blood boil exceedingly. However, this is the key for punk, right?
But this is a perfect setting for her music which portrays her personal and sad love story. With just two or three chords, her simple but lively strums turn the sadness into lightheartedness. This is the most attractive part of her music. Lisa Prank is a minimalist punk musician who plays live with a guitar, a drum machine, a classic Prank crown, and nothing else. This is how she constructs all of her music. Her songs are simple, but that’s all that you really need to get it into your head and make you shake your body.
We had the chance to catch up with Lisa Prank at CHBP this year. Check it out!
KXSU: Thanks for interviewing with KXSU! So recently, we found out that Lisa Prank is not your real name. Would you like to share the story behind your project name, “Lisa Prank”?
LP: The name is a pun based on the great American trapper keeper and sticker artist Lisa Frank, and I chose it mainly because I wanted to think about this project as a band, even though it’s usually just me. Even though I’m singing about my overwhelming vulnerable feelings, something about having a silly name gives me a little more freedom to be the more dramatic version of myself onstage.
KXSU: 2016 has been a very successful year for you. Congratulations on releasing your first full-length debut, Adult Teen, last month! It’s a wonderful album! It’s very “Seattle punk.” Can you share the process of how you ended up creating this whole record? What was it like for you? What key points are there on the album that you’re really trying to discuss?
LP: The songs were mostly written in my bedrooms (one in Denver, where I used to live, and the one I’m currently living in in Seattle) at times when I was feeling something intensely and needed a way to express it. I guess I would say the album is trying to discuss feelings and vulnerability, and trying to navigate the (often) tumultuous seas of emotion.
KXSU: How did you fall in love with punk music?
LP: We met, clicked, started hanging out all the time, and then made it official.
KXSU: What’s your favorite song off of the album?
LP: I feel like my favorite song is always the most recent one I’ve written, so the last song I wrote for the album, “Turn It Up,” is probably my favorite. The album was originally only going to be 10 songs, but then I wrote that one and decided I needed to record it last minute. But how do you choose a favorite star in the sky?
KXSU: I also like the cover. It’s very punk and DIY. How did you come up with the artwork for your cover? Is there any special meaning behind it?
LP: My genius friend Faye Orlove (who does amazing art, made a video for me, and also runs the dreamiest community space called Junior High in LA) drew it for me. The idea was to draw me as if I was a tarot card character, so the items are just things that I like—flowers and hearts and the Space Needle.
KXSU: Is this year your first time at Capitol Hill Block Party?
LP: I sang one song with Childbirth at CHBP the year before last? But yes, it’s the first Lisa Prank set here. I feel positive butterflies about it.
KXSU: What’s your favorite venue in Seattle?
LP: I love the Vera Project! It’s all ages and accessible and they have gender neutral bathrooms and if you need a break from the show to be alone, you can walk over to Metropolitan Market and get a fancy snack. And it’s right next to the Space Needle!
KXSU: What’s your favorite restaurant or bar in the Cap Hill area?
LP: I love to get Moti Mahal Indian food delivered to my house and eat it at home while watching movies with my roommate, Bree.
We also got to meet Lisa Prank, and she did a little shout-out to KXSU on our Instagram! Check that out here.
MELVIN YUEN | I don’t know what time is right now but I need some sleep | Business Director