An Interview with PVRIS: Burning Up

If you’ve never heard of PVRIS, you should be ashamed of yourself. Their debut album, White Noise, has been getting a lot of attention these days, and the band can’t get enough of touring. Frontwoman Lynn Gunn is a fiery chick with vocals that will make your jaw drop. Alongside her bandmates Alex Babinski and Brian MacDonald, this trio has created powerful and haunting music that you can’t, and won’t, forget.

After driving their van through the mud on their way to California, Lynn took some time to chat about touring, their new album, and Alex’s love of Mountain Dew:

For someone who’s never heard of PVRIS, how would you describe your sound?

Well, OK, the smart-ass in me would want me to say that they should just go check it out and not go off my little snippet of what I think it sounds like. But we get like, everything all over the place, so it’s hard to pinpoint something. Our manager makes fun of us and calls us the goth Katy Perry, but we don’t really sound like a goth Katy Perry (laughs). I would say dark electro-pop or something like that.

What are some of your influences, and who inspired you to create the kind of music that you do?

We’re all into music that’s all over the place. We like pop music, we like rock music, we like heavy music, so we just wanted to take all of our influences and combine them together. I like a lot of pop music and I take a lot of influence from pop melodies as well as the song structure and progressions and stuff like that. I feel like we have a lot of grit to our sound, so it adds a little bit more flavor onto things. My top vocalists would be Florence Welch, a guy who goes by Roy English from Eye Alaska, and probably… this sounds crazy, but, Rihanna (laughs).

Your album White Noise has been getting a lot of attention, and now you’ve been signed to Rise Records and added to the Self Help Festival. How does that feel?

It feels awesome! I mean, we weren’t expecting this much positive feedback off the record, in general. It’s been crazy that we’ve gotten it this quickly and this intense, and the feedback has just been awesome. The reaction to everything has been incredible, so we’re super grateful for everything going on and the opportunities we’ve been given. We never really thought things would take off this quickly.

You have a ton of sold-out shows coming up. Are you looking forward to playing anywhere specific?

I love San Francisco. We’re all really excited to play Lowell, which is my hometown where Alex and I went to our first concerts and stuff. That’ll be a crazy day because we went to concerts there when we were in middle school. We’re both like, “Yo, I want to do that,” and now we actually get to do that.

What do you guys do on your days off on tour?

A lot of times on our days off, we’ll do a lot driving and stay at a hotel. If the venues are close together we’ll try to explore the city and do some sightseeing. Sometimes we just like to kick back and veg out for a bit. Our brains are always going; we’re always trying to write stuff on tour. The three of us all have this app called iMaschine, and we’re always on our phones making beats and stuff. I always have my laptop out.

I got back from Florida before we left for this tour. We have some new stuff, but I can’t say anything about it. It’s been made already! We’re trying to one-up the record we have now, so expect just a lot cooler songs, I guess!

Fans loved the “Empty Room Sessions.” Any plans to officially release them?

It hasn’t been confirmed yet but we’ve been talking about wanting to do something like that. I think it would be cool for kids to have a physical version of all those songs. Maybe like a vinyl or something. We don’t have anything planned just yet though.

Anything new coming up in the world of PVRIS?

We just got this tour for the next month or so, and then we go to the UK. We’re actually on our way up to California right now to work on some new videos before we hit the tour, so expect some more music videos! We’re obviously going to be writing a bunch of stuff until we hit the studio. We’re just doing lots of writing and scheming and touring, and plotting things in our evil lair. Expect many, many things though!

Tell me some fun facts about your band.

Hmm… I feel like we put a lot out there already. But a random fact about Brian is he’s possessed by a demon. Alex really likes Mountain Dew and spicy chicken sandwiches from Burger King. And I just drove our van into the mud… on purpose. I feel like we put a lot out there for kids to know about us though. We’re just people.


PVRIS will be playing at the Electric Factory in Philadelphia on Feb. 14 and 15, and the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City on Feb. 17. Their debut album, White Noise, is available now through Rise Records. For more information, go to