Photo courtesy of SideOneDummy Records

Indie-pop duo Dresses have been making a buzz, opening for the likes of Kate Nash, Laura Stevenson and more. Signed to SideOneDummy, the Portland band recently released their debut album, Sun Shy.

The band is Timothy Heller (on the left in the pic above) on vocals and piano and Jared Maldonado on vocals and guitar.

They're now on the road with a stop at Kilby Court on Feb. 9 (tickets here). To get to know the band a little better before their stop in SLC, we interviewed Maldonado about the music, inspiration and sushi.

How would you describe the type of music you play?

"It's hard to pin point a description on it. We still haven't put ourselves in one category, and I don't think we plan on doing so. I'd say in a few words—it's happy, honest and catchy."

What's the story behind the band's name?

"Sadly, there's no cool story here. Our friend thought of the name while we were taking pictures, and it just stuck."

And I'm sure it must be annoying as hell by now, but I have to ask . . . of all the names in the world, Timothy (the female singer)?

"Her dad is named Timothy (now goes by Tim), and he decided before she was even born that if she was a girl he'd want her name to be Timothy. We joke with her sometimes and call her 'Jr.'"

Which musicians do you most draw your influence from?

"We both draw from so many different artists—it's hard to decide. And we both have such different tastes and ways of getting inspired. I know Timothy likes a lot of girl singers like Kimbra, Lorde, Lana, etc., and I enjoy a lot of indie rock. And we both like oldies like Elvis, Beegees, Beach Boys."


There's a very melodic feel-good vibe to most of the songs on your album including “Blew My Mind” and “Sun Shy.” Would you describe your personalities as laid-back or care free?

"We can be. I strive to be laid back; sometimes it gets hard when work builds up and there's a lot to manage, but we are both definitely pretty care-free and enjoy the simplicities of a good melody." 

How many sleepless nights did you have throughout the completion of Sun Shy, or were there any at all?

"There were a few! None completely sleepless, but some where we'd be up in the studio 'til 5 or 6 a.m. That's fun for me, though. I love being on a role and forgetting that the sun is rising."

What song on your album did you enjoy working on the most, and why?

"I liked working on Sun Shy the most. We put a lot of time into the layers and beat of that song, which I'm happy we did because it shows in its depth and huge-ness production-wise."

How hard has it been to manage all your fans' and critics' expectations, including your own?

"It can get hard when we're exhausted or a little grumpy with each other, but overall, we've been so blown away by people's reactions. My expectations for myself vary wildly day by day, so I'm not even gonna go there."

Describe an average day in the life of the Dresses.

"We get up, eat some eggs and fruit, maybe watch an episode of something while we eat, then the day is our oyster after that. I play guitar a lot, and I'm notorious for rearranging my room."  

What's something your fans wouldn't know about you?   

"I can eat my body weight in sushi."