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Krayg Burton of Film School, a Q&A

Playing Bottom of the Hill, 1/26

It took a couple years, a couple tours, a couple of trips to Europe, an EP, and a personnel shakeup, but Film School has finally arrived. The San Francisco group -- recently signed to U.K.-indie label Beggars Banquet -- released its debut self-titled LP Jan. 24. San Francisco will get its official live introduction to the album Jan. 26 at Amoeba music at 6pm before the album release party at Bottom of the Hill later that night.

Krayg Burton, lead vocals and guitar, spoke with SF Station during a phone interview while standing on a heater on a chilly Bay Area night.

SF Station (SFS): The press release your label sent out uses the word "brooding" twice to describe your band, is that an accurate characterization?

Krayg Burton: Somebody in Europe wrote of us as SF miserablists. I don't think so. Compared to a lot of the dance rock that's out right now, yeah [that is true]. But that is not a very good comparison because we're in a certain swing in music where everything is so peppy and "let's go out and celebrate". That's not really what we're doing.

SFS: I heard things get thrown around occasionally when you perform.

Burton: I guess that is sometimes the result of the intensity of the live show. There's a couple of us that end up sort of hurting our gear. A couple of us should be taking care of our gear more than we do.

SFS: You've performed at South by Southwest the last three years, is that a festival you enjoy or is it more of chore to play for label reps and industry-types?

Burton: It's a little strange, we really prefer playing for fans -- people who know our music and support us. It's necessary if you're a band that wants to be more than just a local bar band. You have to go to those festivals occasionally to get out there a little bit.

We didn't have much interest in being on a major label. There are a lot of problems inherent to a major label deal. You have to be more commercial rock and work on all singles. That's not really us.

We spent our time kind of looking elsewhere and that's how we found Beggars. We talked to some majors and it just didn't feel right. I don't know what they would do with us anyway. We have songs that are more than five-minutes long and they wanted us to bring it down to three-and-a-half minutes. It is flattering to be talked to, but it just wasn't the right match.

SFS: You toured Europe extensively toward the end of 2005 and Film School has gotten some publicity there. Is the crowd different than U.S. gigs?

Burton: Music is more of an entire culture there rather than just an age group. In the states its mostly people between 14 and 25 that are going to shows. In Europe, we had fathers and daughters coming to shows. We had a father come up to us and say, "I really like your stuff and my daughter is into it to." That happened at several shows, which is cool.

Film School
at Bottom of the Hill
1/26 at 9 pm
Tickets: $10
Doors open at 8:30 pm
With Sound Team and Citizens Here And Abroad