Only together as a band since February of this year, Heart Beats Red comes from a layered, hectic musical background. Kingan plays with The Haggard, The Never (with sts from The Haggard, and Rachel and Radio from the Need), and a Cyndi Lauper cover band with Christensen; Christensen was in 10-4, Sharks Kill, and Cherry Ice Cream Smile; Brown plays solo gigs. They've mostly been playing all ages shows, something Christensen feels strongly about. "I feel like all ages shows are super important, and I won't play a 21-and-over show unless I'm playing an all ages show in that city also, because I think it's important that kids can go. But I want to play to a broader audience, because sometimes people are fucked up and they need to hear what I'm saying and need to hear how I think and how I feel."
That's a traditionally punk rock aesthetic, and their influences may have something to do with it. "I listen to Harem Scarum and the Need. I loved Team Dresch," says Kingan. "I connected with that band emotionally. For this band, I'm not a songwriter, but in my other bands, it's more political than emotional."
Heart Beats Red are releasing a seven-inch record and touring California with Made for TV Movie this November, and just returned from a tour of the Pacific Northwest with The Disappearer and Welcome to My Skirt. With their serious riffs pulling in vocal sentiment, they're all heart. "I think, to us, the important part about playing is that we write what our guts tell us to write. I'm not doing this for anybody else but mebut if people like it, I'll be glad," Christensen laughs.
This is survival music. It comes straight from the inside, a reminder that everybody's got mystical blood driving near their hearts. Says Brown, "The thing for me with songwriting is about letting other people know they're not alone."