Interview: Tower – Sarabeth Eve Linden on NYC band’s rock n roll fire

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 9:45 AM (PST)


Sarabeth Eve Linden has such a bad ass voice that she could literally sing probably anything. Like, if she lent her pipes to the 1970′s “Wouldn’t You Like To Be A Pepper Too?” Dr. Pepper song, it would peel your cap off. I’ve been telling anyone who will listen for awhile now about this lady and her band of rowdy, riff happy time machine studs TOWER (ie:Philippe Arman: BASS, James Danzo: GUITAR, Zak Penley: GUITAR and Justin Sherrell: DRUMS) . They rage and vibe like some gang from an alternate Universe where rock never got watered down and no mistakes of the last thirty plus years were ever made, but they also have modern punch and bite to their material. Every song I have heard them put out has a ton of soul and even when, as on new single “Party (Ready To Roll)”, Sarabeth sings basically just about partying…she SELLS that shit with fire that would make Andrew WK feel like he was slackin’ on spreading the good time gospel.

I’ve felt for awhile now that these cool (but not in a dorky hipster way) kids are the best band in NYC right now and it is fucking awesome they inked a supportive deal with The End Records, the respected NYC label that is having a stellar year with some killer releases like Tournament and Daniel Lioneye’s newest. Tower were so overdue for a full length though that it may actually balance the force in a way Anakin Skywalker never quite managed now that it is imminent (due Oct. 28!). The group feel like they are really about teamwork or the “group” vibe that made, say, The New York Dolls , Ramones or Kiss or other classic groups so appealing in their definitive years, despite having a vocalist who obviously can command attention (and that is not just an exploitative comment on her looks and fashion sense, seriously. I put their demo on a year end list alongside fucking Kendrick Lamar a year or so back based on the strength of Sarabeth’s psychotically awesome voice and how hard the band committed to backing that shit with powerful riffage, and that was one of their EARLIER songs).

This band is only getting better, which is kinda scary. If it was an era where people properly worshipped rock n roll like they oughta, people would be making pilgrimages just to bring this band 12 packs of beer and get autographs. Hopefully that happens anyway. Buy the record HERE.

Read my chat with Sarabeth below and have a wonderful weekend, pirates.


1.You’ve been one of my fave bands on the scene and on the up and up for awhile now,
just possessed of a real team vibe but also rock n roll spirit. It also feels like you
really let the band develop at your own pace before finding a label, which is good
because now you have done lots of shows and honed your attack, plus have super solid
songs. Does this feel accurate? What was it like making the album?!!

Thank you! We’ve been working really hard for a solid year. Creating this album felt very natural, almost as if we were destined to make it. It actually came together quite fast. There are only 8 songs on this album… Just enough to call it a full length.

Yeah, but even when you just had a few song demos they were really satisfying because of the level of high voltage! One thing I love about the band is it reminds me a lot of Thin Lizzy or Slade or
epic rock n roll influenced metal like “Neon Knights” where whether the topic was
serious or about partying or fuckin’ wizards, the vocal carries so much feeling. Are
you a trained singer or just naturally a siren?

Thin Lizzy is one of my favorite bands, Slade “Mama Weer all Crazee now” is my birth control alarm, and “Neon Knights” is self-explanatory because DIO, so you pretty much hit a nail on the head. I’ve been singing since middle school. I took voice lessons for many years but quit after I was booed off the stage at the Apollo Theater at age 16. It was super traumatic for me but I’m glad I was able to overcome failure, move on and sing Rock n Roll again.

How long have you been performing either individually or as a group?
We’ve only been a band since April of 2015. We’re super fresh. We have a lot in store for us. James and I were in a Ronnie James Dio tribute band together prior to TOWER.

How’d the deal with The End Records come about. They also signed my homie’s band Tournament, which is two super solid rock n roll releases for them this year.
We actually were “discovered” by The End at a gig we played, where Tournament was the headliner. We love those dudes!

Photo by James Obrien

Photo by James Obrien

Do you feel like NYC still has a viable rock scene or is it mostly uphill battles?
The rock scene in NYC is strong. I’m very thankful to be involved in such a talented community. All my friends are killing it right now.

What have been some of the funnier experiences you’ve shared since the band started?
You seem to be serious about your craft but also not take yourselves so seriously that
you can’t enjoy the ride.

On tour we shared many ~*special*~ times. We were kicked out of Pentagram’s backstage area at the SXSW show for stealing their beers after the promoter said we could have some. Victor Griffin wrote us an apology note after. We were attacked by a swarm of hornets in Nashville and we stayed in a haunted mansion from 1884 in New Orleans. Good times keep on rolling.

 Do you feel like the scene is becoming more supportive of women or have you still encountered a lot of sexism? It seems like it is still of course out there but also that girls are super owning and outshining or crushing a lot of the lame-o extroverted cock faces.

Sexism still exists, unfortunately, and as long as the male ego is still present, sexism probably won’t completely disappear for a while. Heavy metal is still very much a “male” genre and some people still say TOWER is “female fronted” and I hate that. However, I’ve been getting lots of positive responses from men. The best you can do in terms of sexism in the scene is just be real with what you do and continue fighting for your art. Any aware person is going to pick up authenticity no matter how you do it.

Any touring plans coming up you can tell us about? You met Ace Frehley once, right?
I feel like I saw that on your instagram somewhere amidst lots of pictures of amazing
pants, haha. What are some bands you’d love to play with or some of the shows that
have been your favorite?

We went on our first tour last March with the band R.I.P. from Portland and they are so fucking amazing. We really want to tour with them again. Our bands really complimented each other. Our album is out October 28th and we’re going on a tour to support it. Heading to middle America then making our way back to the east coast in November. Yes, I met Ace Frehley at BB Kings in the city with my friend Chris Enriquez from Revolver Magazine. Ace was wearing a Thin Lizzy tee shirt. Pretty sure he’s a huge fan because they covered “Emerald” that night. It ruled.

Lastly, is the name taken from the Tarot card of The Tower, or just sort of what
you want to become (a tower of power, so to speak). Anyway, you are all mega rulers
and thank you

TOWER is a timeless name with no expectations, no limits, no boundaries. The card wasn’t associated with it at first, but then we made tee shirts incorporating the tarot card because of its powerful imagery. TOWER is a name that lends itself to anything and we’re not afraid to take risks. Find us on iTunes, Spotify, your local record store, and a theater near you!


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