Lord British: Music Is Company and Good Food










Band Members:

  • Keith Axline – Guitar/Vox
  • Michael Calore – Bass/Vox
  • Dave Siebert – Drums
Tech Industry Affiliations: Wired

SVR: Tell us about your band. How did you get started? How long have you been playing?

Lord British [formerly Domestic Electric]: Mike and Keith joined forces when they met working at Wired. At the time, the band was called Domestic Electrics and continued under that name for years until a few months ago when Lord British was born. We had lost a few key members of DE, gained Dave and were going in a slightly different sonic direction, so we wanted to change the name.

SVR: Who are your major influences?

Lord British: We’re such an omnivorous bunch of music junkies that it’s hard to say if one flavor or another comes out more when all that stuff goes through our brain blenders.

A few that we really look up to are Led Zeppelin (and most of the classic rock greats), Built to Spill, Smashing Pumpkins (pre Corgan going crazy), Weezer, The Walkmen, Wilco, Pink Floyd, Rush, Fugazi, Promise Ring, Jets to Brazil, Destroyer, and on and on …

SVR: What’s your ultimate direction for your band? Are you seeking fame and fortune in the music business?

Lord British: Yes, and we’re also starting a unicorn horn and sasquatch fur business.

We just want to make songs that people want to listen to over and over again until they’re absolutely sick of them.

SVR: What are your day jobs?

Lord British: Mike and Keith push pixels all day as editors at Wired. Mike edits product reviews and Keith edits Raw File, Wired‘s photography blog.

Dave currently does industrial demolition with badass hydraulic tools and all sorts of electrical and fire danger.

SVR: How does your music influence your work or vice versa?

Lord British: Working at Wired means we’re around people with high expectations for aesthetics and production, and we try to bring that level of execution to our music, largely unsuccessfully. Instead of making us better, it usually just makes us feel ashamed and inadequate.

Good music, like good writing, requires good editing. Killing your darlings usually makes for a better result. If you’re not making difficult cuts, you’re not doing it right.

Dave’s work on demolition means he could easily end the other band members’ lives with his bare hands, and he commands the drums with that same authority.

SVR: Why is music education important?

Lord British: Music is like food for your soul, and when you know all the technique and creativity that goes into it, it tastes better.

Also, if you can learn to make it yourself, you can always pick up an instrument and feel less alone for a brief sliver of time.

SVR: What was your own experience learning music as a kid? Who flipped that switch in your brain?

Lord British: For Keith, who writes a lot of the music, his dad first turned him on to guitar. Learning to play was spurred on by a deep competition within his group of middle school friends to be cool. A competition that he consistently lost. That meant he had a lot of time in his room alone with a guitar, drums and a four-track. Today he can still be outplayed by many second-year guitar students, but he learned enough to trick more talented people into playing with him.