Name: Big Ups
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Members: Brendan Finn, Joe Galarraga, Amar Lal, Carlos Salguero
Evan Miller: How would you describe Big Ups?
Big Ups: Big Ups is a band, a rock band, and we like to have fun, we play a weird mash-up of punk and metal and sludge and grunge and whatever, that’s what we do.
EM: Where did the name come from?
BU: There wasn’t too much thought behind the name, to be completely honest. Someone once told me, “All band names are stupid if you think about them for too long,” and I tend to agree with that. Around the time the band started, there were a lot of bands that had plural names with no article like ‘the’ or anything. ‘Big Ups’ kind of follows in that mold in a weird way; it’s a phrase, but on paper it looks like ‘adjective + plural noun without a definite article’. It’s more a joke about band names than anything.
EM: Any significant plans for the remaining year?
BU: We’re headed to Europe for 3 weeks in May, hitting the UK, Germany, The Netherlands and more. Also, we hope to start recording for another release of some kind soon. Beyond that, the rest is a mystery.
EM: Most bizarre tour story so far?
BU: We just got back from a two week tour with Pile and Speedy Ortiz, and I would say that the weirdest thing that happened on that tour was that Mike (drummer for Speedy Ortiz) had an extreme yawning incident that sent him to the hospital.
EM: Thoughts on the current NY scene?
BU: There are so many good bands and DIY venues in NYC at the moment! That’s an incredible thing! But I think the scene is almost too big; I wish I had time to see every band and every show, but it’s hard when there are 15+ good shows happening every night! It’s definitely a luxury to be complaining about too many shows, but it is the reality sometimes.
EM: Favorite place to tour to/band to tour with?
BU: I really like touring in the South. We recently did a show in Corpus Christi, TX, and everyone at the show was so excited to see a bunch of bands they had never seen before. It was one of our most fun shows to-date. It’s always cool to go to a place with open-minded people who are genuinely enthused about music. As for favorite bands to tour with, that’s an interesting question for us. We have done a lot of touring by ourselves for the most part. We’ve only done two tours where we’ve been with other bands: one with Flagland, and the aforementioned tour with Pile and Speedy Ortiz. So our favorite bands to tour with are Flagland, Pile and Speedy Ortiz.
EM: Who are Big Ups’ favorite bands right now?
BU: This is going to be a huge list, so be prepared. Locally, we love Washer, Low Fat Getting High, Vulture Shit, Mannequin Pussy, Palehound, Flagland, The So So Glos, Baked, Big Neck Police… the list goes on and on. We’re blessed to have so many good bands in our immediate vicinity. All of the bands on/involved with Exploding in Sound Records are amazing: Grass is Green, Kal Marks, Speedy Ortiz, Pile, Krill, etc. We love Roomrunner. We love Greys. We did an awesome show with Blacklisters and Super Luxury in Leeds back in February. Wow, we like a lot of bands.
Big Ups’ latest full-length is titled “Eighteen Hours of Static”, which you can find on bigups.bandcamp.com.