What is one part sad, one part catchy, one part nostalgic, and four parts friendly? The answer is this month’s featured artist, Distant Futures.
Formed in the summer of 2016 Distant Futures has quickly become a staple in the Pittsburgh DIY music scene. Their brand of 90’s emo guitar licks and indie rock charm are winning over crowds in venues and houses all over the Greater Pittsburgh Area.
Distant Futures is Connor Schweisberger (vocals/guitar), Austin Ostiguy (vocals/bass), Ryan Ruff (drums/trumpet), and Sam Treber (guitar).
All four members are woven deep into the music scene in Pittsburgh, collaborating in many other projects as well. Sam is in Short Fictions a nice mid-western/emo/mathy project. Ryan is in Lawn Care another mathy/emo band with more of a punk vibe on, AF Records! Not only do they play a lot, but these guys also run house venues and host many shows!
For being labeled as an “emo” band these guys bring nothing but smiles anywhere they go. For instance, I was once lucky enough to have tickets to a Pinegrove show in Pittsburgh; and Connor, whom I had never really met before, swoops in at one point and gives me the biggest hug and smile I got that whole night. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever seen these guys not smile.
Besides being super friendly, these guys put on one heck of an energetic show, with songs that are built to be sung along to. If you don’t believe me then go watch this live session they did earlier this year at the University of Pittsburgh.
Video Credit: Decypher Sessions
If you don’t live in the Greater Pittsburgh area or have five jobs and a couple kids, don’t worry they have music you can listen to on the internet. Released a year ago on November 7th, their debut full-length Mosaic is a love letter of sorts in both sounds and words. Self-produced and self-recorded these songs are raw and oozing with life. Need to hear it for yourself? Well then go ahead and give it a listen:
A mosaic is where you arrange different colored materials in a way that forms a picture or a pattern (according to Webster), which is exactly what Distant Futures did with this album. Six out of the eleven songs are fronted by Connor leaning more towards the mathy/emo vibe they have going on. Meanwhile, the other four are fronted by Austin having a much more straightforward indie rock vibe to them. It’s a mosaic of different sounding songs coming together to form one coherent piece.
If you would like a taste of what these guys have going on, give “M.G.” a listen. “I’ll be your something blue on that day, I’ll be your something blue.” It’s sad, catchy, and even has a horn on it. (Oh yeah, half the dudes in the band play trumpet and as a trumpet player, I respect that.)
Another banger on the album is the heavy hitting and sing-along-able “The Manor.” The extremely catchy “Waking Dream” or album closer “Sunday Best,” which is the 90’s emo at its finest.
Mosaic is for fans of You Blew It!, Braid, watching old movies alone, and talking to some close friends about those movies. It’s an album to get nostalgic to or just to lose yourself on some nighttime drive.
How About An Interview
We sent over some questions and this is what we got back!
Q: How did you all meet and when did you start playing together?
A: Conner – From the little thing called the WORLD WIDE WEB (laughs), so I actually posted some demos online in the summer of 2016 and Ryan was one of the first people to reach out to me. I ended up meeting at his house and we recorded a mini EP that weekend. Austin and Sam were actually his roommates and everything kind of fell into place.
Q: What are your goals with the band?
A: Ryan – Just for personal fulfillment and to continue growing our friendships and better ourselves as musicians. We don’t have any “make it big” goals, but we get a lot of joy meeting new people/bands within the area.
Q: Whats your favorite venue to play/or see a show in Pittsburgh?
A: Ryan – My favorite place to see a show in Pittsburgh was Ba Sing Se, which is no longer a venue here in Pittsburgh sadly.
A: Connor – I have personal attachments to Roboto because it was the first place I saw a show in Pittsburgh when I moved here. I really love the fun house at Mr. Smalls and Cattivo as well! Also, shout out to the Schnel!
Q: Whats your favorite spot to eat some grub?
A: Connor – DIBS. Shout out to Doce Taqueria and Benny Fierro’s. They have always been good to me and they deserve your business. I once had Sean and Shannon from Doce tell me if they don’t see me for more than 2 weeks, they are contacting the police.
Q: What was the first album you ever bought for yourself?
A: Ryan – American Idiot by Green Day
A: Connor – Bleed American by Jimmy Eat World
Q: Whats the last album you’ve ever bought yourself?
A: Ryan – Pup’s last album!
A: Connor – Camp Cope’s self-titled. I just had that shipped from Australia because I love it so much. Stop whatever you’re doing and listen to that record.
Q: Whats your favorite local act (excluding yourselves of course)?
A: Ryan – Rue
A: Connor – Ryan is saying I can only say two, because I always list off 12 when I get asked this question. I’m going to pick two at random um…..String Machine and Soda Club!
Q: What are some interests you have outside of music?
A: Connor – I love old movies, I go to the movies probably once every couple weeks. Layer the butter on your popcorn or I don’t trust you.
Q: Whats your favorite place to play outside of Pittsburgh?
A: Connor – Chicago, I have a deep love for that city and the people that are there. I lived there for a summer in college and I grew up a lot as a person. Also, they have the best pizza (Peqouds and Lou’s), hands down, will argue with anybody.
Q: Do you guys have any new music in the works or anything we should keep our eye out for?
A: Ryan – For sure! We recorded an EP back in May that we are planning to release in the upcoming months. We put a lot of work into every aspect of it and are very appreciative of everyone who has helped and listened on the way.
A: Sam – FO SHO!
Video Credit: Emery Meyer