In October of 2016, Adam Deitch and Borahm Lee of Break Science teamed up with Aron Magner and Marc Brownstein of The Disco Biscuits for the first time to form [Br]eaking [Bi]scuits at Brooklyn Comes Alive. The result was an all-out dance party, seamlessly blending the experimental nature of the Biscuits with the trip-hop, downtempo beats of Break Science, making for a new exploration of electronic soundscapes.
The collaborative project has since gone on to play a handful of shows together, though appearances are rare. The next opportunities to catch the group are coming up at Gem & Jam Festival in Tuscon, AZ 1/25-28, and the Fillmore Denver with Michal Menert, Late Night Radio & more 1/26. We caught up with the guys ahead of that performance and had them interview one another. Check out their conversation below!
Deitch/Lee To Magner/Brownstein:
Adam/Borahm: What are each of your worst onstage mishaps?
Aron: At the 1st Bank Center in Colorado a couple years ago, I heard my three front-facing keyboards simultaneously trigger the most god-awful sound. I was facing the band on my other keyboard side and turned around instantly to see what had just happened. To my surprise, there was a “fan” in just his boxers attempting to climb OVER my keyboard stack. My immediate reaction was just to push him over, which I think I successfully did. There are so many mysteries that surround this. Who was he? Where is he now? Why did he? Is he okay after somersaulting ten feet down onto the concrete floor of the pit below? Let’s analyze the tapes shall we?!?!?…We have multi-camera slow-motion video footage! Watch it here.
Marc: Well, one time, Umphrey’s McGee called on me to fill in for Ryan Stasik on bass at Camp Bisco while he was at home because his first child was being born. I got onstage, and within the first bar of music, I realized something was gravely wrong. At least one of my strings was out of tune. Well it turned out that three strings were a half step out of tune in opposite directions, making it nearly impossible to figure out how to perform the songs in real time. It took me three songs to get it tuned due to the intense sunlight because Umphrey’s somehow had an early afternoon set. All I can say is, maybe, just maybe, it wasn’t an accident, and that it was part of the prank war with Umphrey’s… I intentionally threw their set in the toilet at Camp Bisco…
Adam/Borahm: Who are your top three fans? Tell us about them.
Aron: Oh, come on. I’m not gonna inflate the heads of any of our most loyal and rabid fans. Though I do think that once you have attended one hundred shows, you should wear something to shows that distinguish you in a dignified way—like the SNL does with the five-timers club.
Marc: We have some pretty awesome fans. I would have to say the top three fans are people who were there in the very beginning and are still here with us all these years later: Jon and Lisa Lesser and Mark Foundos—the creme de la creme.
Adam/Borahm: What is your best Phish story?
Aron: One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.
Marc: I once wrote a poem named the “Ugly Fish” in 7th grade, and I would have to rate that as by far my best fish story.
Adam/Borahm: Explain the Ivy league school-to-jam band process. Not many successful bands come out of top-tier colleges.
Aron: Attend Ivy League school —> Start Band —> Drop out of Ivy League school.
Marc: For Barber, there was a fourth part which was —> get notified by Ivy League school that the requirements of your major have changed, and under the new rules, you qualify for a degree and get one in the mail.
Adam/Borahm: What got Brownie “kicked out” of the biscuits for a short time?
Aron: He was kind of being an asshole.
Marc: I was kind of being an asshole.
Adam/Borahm: What’s your connection to hip hop?
Marc: Having grown up on the streets of NYC, I was a fan of early Tribe and De La Soul and other conscious hip hop acts from the golden era. Also, I got hooked on the Queensbridge crew—Mobb Deep, Smif and Wesson, etc.—a few years later and ultimately found B.I.G. a few years after that—he still reigns supreme for me. We had the pleasure of making some dope hip hop beats with some heavy players a few years ago, Jim Jones, Curren$y, etc.
Adam/Borahm: What inspired you to incorporate sounds from electronic music?
Aron: Two things: First, in the mid 90’s when the Biscuits formed, electronic music was just starting to become more mainstream in the US. It had been around for years in Europe already. We were getting exposed to some deeper electronic stylings by our international friends at college, so it only made sense that it would creep its way into our sound. Then came my purchase of a Roland JP-8000 synth that I unboxed before a gig at a fraternity party on Halloween night 1997. I remember vividly thinking that fusing these tones into our jam band mantra would be a catalyst to discovering who we were as a band.
Adam/Borahm: If the four of you (all the Biscuits) were hanging out, who would be the head DJ for tunes? What is the first song you’d put on?
Marc: When the four of us are all hanging out, we are making sure that our shows are going to be as good as they can possibly be. That’s how we spend any time together. Focused on bringing crazy shows.
Adam/Borahm: What did y’all think of Adam Deitch’s performance with the Biscuits when he filled in for Alan and barely knew the music?
Aron: Adam is one of the most versatile musicians I know. He can flawlessly and with masterful precision play within any genre. He’s got big ears, and the ability to be the backbone of whatever band he is drumming for. It only made sense that he would pick up on the Biscuits’ style while still maintaining his own musical personality. As far as I’m concerned, you should never pass up an opportunity to play with Adam Deitch.
Marc: It was crazy because when we were looking for a new drummer for the Biscuits someone suggested Adam to me, and I think I was a little intimidated by the possibility of ever playing with Adam at that point. So getting to hear him under those songs ultimately was a huge honor and a huge treat. We don’t take for granted how great it is to get to collaborate with A-List musicians. Deitch and Borahm are on their way to being living legends, and we cherish any chance to play with them.
Adam/Borahm: With our next Breaking Biscuits gig coming up at Gem & Jam Festival at the end of the month, we have to ask: Gem or Jam?
Magner/Brownstein to Deitch/Borahm:
Aron/Marc: Does having two musician parents give you a competitive edge?
Adam: Not really. It just gave me a deep respect for music at an early age.
Aron/Marc: How many flights have you missed?
Adam: Never missed a flight going to a show. Ever.
Borahm: Missed a few after the show but never before.
Aron/Marc: What songs should we play?
Adam: Maybe some Wu-Tang covers?
Aron/Marc: What is jazz?
Borahm: It’s a daily vitamin that is essential to your well being.
Aron/Marc: Jubee or not Jubee? That is the question.
Adam: Working on some songs with him as we speak. He’s a very talented individual.
Aron/Marc: Favorite memory of the Conspirator/Break Science tour we did on the same bus?
Adam: Making that trap track with y’all and KJ Sawka that we still haven’t put out yet!!
Check out the full Gem & Jam lineup below, and click here for tickets and more info.
[Cover Photo by Andrew Blackstein]