Brooklyn band, Augustines (nee We are Augustines), is, without a doubt, one of our favorite bands to come onto the scene in the past few years. From the start, we were drawn in by the gruffly beautiful sound of their music and the emotion-laid-bare in singer Billy McCarthy’s voice. We’ve written them up many, many times in this space, most recently just a few months ago as they debuted their sophomore, self-titled album.

We recently got a chance to catch up with one of the group’s two founders, song-writer Eric Sanderson (above, right), to talk about the new album; our mutual love of his current and our former neighborhood in Brooklyn, Carroll Gardens; and forming Augustines after the break-up of his and Billy’s former band, Pela.

“After Pela broke up…we had to really ask ourselves if we wanted to continue doing music or not, because we certainly didn’t have an opportunity” Erica told me. “So it was very much standing at the bottom of the mountain and asking ourselves if we wanted to go through the sacrifice…to start climbing. And it was just really simple; I realized that my goal—once I kind of lost Pela and lost the opportunity to do music, I really just wanted to be happy. I just wanted to get over the misery and get over the suffering and just focus on being and happy and trying to be the best person I could be. And I looked at my life—I took a long, long look at it, a very deep look—and I realized that…the thing that makes me most happy is music. So, even though per suing music is often very difficult, I realized at that moment that, for me to genuinely be happy at my core, that’s what I need to do.”

Eric went on to describe the transformative effect touring the band’s debut—Rise Ye Sunken Ships—had on the three of them and how that affected their sound and subject matter. 

Listen to track from their new album, Augustines, above. Our full conversation can be heard below. You can still stream the full album on our February post; buy it via iTunes, on CD via Amazon, or on vinyl at your favorite independent record store.

Photo by Chris Becker.