Stepping into the Spotlight with Southeast Engine

, Staff

Every week we like to spotlight a rising band from outside of New England. Today, we get to know Ohio’s Southeast Engine. You can catch the band in Massachusetts when they hit TT the Bear’s Place in Cambridge on Saturday, February 26.

Band Name: Southeast Engine

Band Members:
Adam Remnant: Vocals, Guitar (Athens, OH)
Leo DeLuca: Drums (Durham, NC)
Jesse Remnant: Bass (Athens, OH)
Billy Matheny: Piano, Organ (Morgantown, WV)

Canary (2011)
From the Forest to the Sea (2009)
A Wheel Within a Wheel (2007)
Coming to Terms with Gravity (2005)
Love is a Murder, a Mystery of Sorts (2003)


How did you form/start?

We got our start in the winter of 1999/2000 in Athens, Ohio. Adam Remnant and Leo DeLuca grew up in Dayton, Ohio and started the band shortly after moving to Athens.

Finish the sentence, someone would like your band if they like…

… folk rock in the vein of Dylan, The Band, Wilco, The Beatles, Neil Young, etc. Also, if they like Cherry Garcia Ice Cream (and no, we’re not a jam band). This statement proves true in every case though – it’s a very strange correlation we don’t even understand.

What song of yours should people listen to first and why?

”New Growth” – it’s a song from our new album Canary – it represents where we are at right now – it’s also about the beginnings of spring, which everyone desperately needs this time of year! You can hear it and download it at our website.

Walk us through your songwriting process.

I try to have them start spontaneously – with no idea of what I want to write about – I let ideas present themselves to me and go from there. It’s sort of a belief that the statue is in the stone, and my job is just to chisel away and find it.

Tell us a little bit about your latest album.

Canary is inspired by living here in southeast Ohio for the last ten years in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. The songs are set before the backdrop of the 1930’s Depression in Southeast Ohio – it’s about persevering though hard times.

What has your most memorable moment as a band been?

We made a music video for the song ”Black Gold” on our last album From the Forest to the Sea. The song deals with political corruption, pollution, etc. We shot the video at the National Mall in Washington D.C. In the video each of us carries a suspicious bag which reveals a respirator/gas mask which each of dons in the video. It was shocking that no one once questioned what we were doing – I can only guess no one stopped us because we don’t fit the profile of a threat. You can see the video at our website or on YouTube.

What has been the hardest part of building your name onto the national level?

The hardest part has been simply balancing band life with home life – we’ve all balanced day jobs and touring for some time now. We’re also simultaneously trying to write, record, and promote our music. It’s not always easy.

Who are the best bands from your hometown that we might not know about?

Mike Elliott, Appalachian Death Ride, Human Cannonball, J.D. Hutchison, Whale Zombie, Wheels on Fire, Dropdead Sons, Scubadog

What band would you most like to open for?

Frontier Ruckus. They’re good friends of ours. We keep talking about doing shows together. One of these days it’s going to happen.

Who is your all-time favorite Boston band?

Modern Lovers – I saw Jonathan Richman a few years back at a small coffee shop here in Athens, Ohio – great show!

What are your thoughts on playing Boston?

Our last show in Boston was opening for The Wrens at the Middle East, which was an incredible show – what a band – they were also pivotal in helping us to get signed to Misra Records. We’ve played in Cambridge at PAs Lounge a couple times as well. We’ve actually taken advantage of the historical sites in Boston and done our fair share of site seeing. You can really feel the history in Boston just walking down the street; we love that.

What can people expect from your live show and why should our readers catch your next stop in Boston?

I’m an awful salesman so I always struggle with these questions. People can expect to see us playing our songs in person – see, I told you I was no good at this self promotion thing.


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