If you go
What: Big Gigantic
When: 8 p.m., Sept. 27
Where: Fillmore Auditorium, 1510 Clarkson St., Denver, 303-837-0360
More info: fillmoreauditorium.org
Dominic Lalli and Jeremy Salken had another festival-packed summer as Big Gigantic. It’s been more than a year since the Boulder duo released Nocturnal, but it that doesn’t stop droves of fans from turning out to see them blend beats with live sax and drums.
As their homecoming shows at Red Rocks and the Fillmore Auditorium approach and Colorado continues to deal with disastrous flooding, Lalli and Salken said they will contribute funds from the two shows to disaster relief. Conscious Alliance will be at both shows, collecting food, monetary donations, new or lightly used clothing and household items. On Sunday, Lalli and Salken will be with Conscious Alliance outside of the Boulder Theater from 2-4 p.m. selling no-service-fee tickets to the show at the Fillmore (Red Rocks has sold out) and taking donations.
We dropped them a line to talk about helping out their home state, plus new music and the value of good rolling papers.
I just got word that you’re donating funds from your Colorado shows to relief efforts.
Jeremy Salken: We were gone for a couple weeks when the flood happened. After we announced the show and, you know, everything happened, we thought, ‘Shit, this is the perfect opportunity to try to help some people out.’ It’s so awful, what has been going on the last couple weeks. We literally got in yesterday and it was sunny like nothing had happened, but there was mud and water everywhere.
Dominic Lalli: It’s weird, I lived here for so long and it’s like nothing ever happens here. I legit felt guilty being out of town. This is just a good opportunity for us to just help people out because there’s people who need to be helped.
Did you pick specific funds to give to?
JS: We’re still kind of figuring out because that’ all just happening right now. We’re teaming up with Conscious Alliance. They’re good friends of ours. They deal with a lot of nonprofits and are a nonprofit themselves. They kind of help out in any way possible. That was a natural connection, with them, and we’re gonna find good places to be able to donate money and we’re gonna take food and clothes and anything else people wanna give.
DL: You kind of have to spend a minute really making sure it gets to the right places. They’re gonna help us and we’re gonna make sure it gets to the right places.
Well, on a lighter note, you’ve had another good summer tour. You’ve been touring on Nocturnal for over a year and fans clearly aren’t bored. That must feel good.
DL: Definitely, you know, it’s crazy just — we tour so much and we’re always on the road… It’s hard, I feel like i’ve been working on a new album for a year and a half. Thankfully we’re still gaining new fans and that kind of thing — and that’s super cool — and at the same time working on the new album and looking to release the new album at the beginning of next year, in January. I know it’s kind of a ways away. We were gonna try to release it before Red Rocks, but everything was gonna be so rushed and it didn’t feel right. Some of the music is done, so we’ll be releasing singles along the way. New music is coming sooner than you think.
What can we expect from the new music? How’s it coming?
DL: I’m getting really excited about it. A lot of different stuff. I feel like I keep, you know, just updating our sound and making it better and making the ideas so much more clear, and that’s exciting. Just the juxtaposition between the melodies and the fills and the bass and the drums and the drops. All those things working together. It’s becoming this engine where everything’s really working well together. That’s really exciting to hear, the ideas come through so much more clear.
One of the first singles we’re gonna release is with a singer and it’s more down-tempo, which we haven’t done too much. We’ll just continue to open our world up instead of close in on one thing, putting our sound in all these different shells and showcasing what we can do. It’s something I’m doing and getting a little better at. It’s not completely together, the whole album, but it’s coming together pretty nicely … I’m excited for everything to take shape, finally.
Do you tend to create the electronic parts and then add the live sax and drums, or do you think about all of the components at once?
DL: You have to look at it and go at it all those ways. You have to look at it from the electronic side, and go back and look at it from the sax and drums side, and how it’s gonna sound live. You just write every way.
OK, this is a little random, but I have to compliment you on the Big Gigantic rolling papers. I enjoyed the laser-eyed cat on the packaging.
JS: [laughing] I might be enjoying one right now.
Does that come about in, like, a marketing meeting or do you just wake up one day and decide you should make rolling papers?
DL: I think I got the idea from Gramtik, our friend Denis. When you travel a lot and you carry around rolling papers, you lose them quickly and it’s hard to get good ones. We just thought, ‘Oh, what about rolling papers?’ It’s a great idea and we found a company that makes great ones.
JS: I think it’s really for when we’re on the road, so that we’re stocked, more than for merch.