Soundcheck: Now Now Every Children
Photo by Graeme Mitchell
If going on disastrous tours and facing near-arrests at international borders can be considered a rite of passage for up-and-coming bands, then Now Now Every Children should now be ready for the big time. The youthful twosome of Cacie Dalager (vocals, guitar) and Brad Hale (drums) busted out of their hometown of Minneapolis eager to take on the world, only to find that the realities of life on the road were much less glamorous than they might have anticipated.
“Our very first tour was complete misery,” recalls Hale. “We booked the shows ourselves and packed all of our gear in a minivan. We couldn’t afford hotels, so we just drove every night until we could find a Wal-Mart parking lot to sleep in. We slept on top of our instruments and it was about 100 degrees outside. Plus, no one came to the shows.”
“That’s nothing,” says Dalager, “We went to Europe for the first time and were detained for over five hours at the border of France. They didn’t believe that we were in a band and we honestly thought that we had inadvertently broken some crazy law and would be thrown in jail. We’d never traveled abroad before, so we were completely terrified.”
Dalager and Hale are each 22 years old (with birthdays only a few days apart) and are often mistaken for siblings or a couple (they are neither). The two have been playing music together since high school, (“The first song we recorded was for our friend’s high school graduation when we were still sophomores,” says Hale, “It was VERY dramatic.”) but it wasn’t until they signed with Afternoon records in 2007 that Now Now Every Children finally started to achieve liftoff. The bands debut, Cars, is a surprisingly rocking affair-epic pop throwdowns full of shoegazery guitars, anthemic melodies, and just the slightest, teeniest hint of emo melancholia. Though they might sound twee on paper, the band is a formidable live act, particularly when it comes to Dalager’s full-throttle guitar playing. “People don’t expect it, I guess.” She shrugs, “You’d think a girl guitar player would be less of a novelty in 2009, but people still seem amazed by it. The fact that we both look like we’re 12 years old might also have something to do with it. Sometimes people don’t believe we’re old enough to actually be in the club.”