These questions were answered by ex Retard-O-Bot frontman and now solo artist Peter Pepper.
How would you describe your style of music?
We describe our music as ‘adventure punk’. No avenues are off the table when writing or performing, if it’s taking us where we want to go. It’s honest to how we see the world, focus on where you want to be and have a blast getting there.
Who or what would you say your biggest influences are?
My biggest influences are boredom and mediocrity. We can do whatever we want to, so when boredom starts to set in, it’s a reminder that I’m in too familiar of a place and that I better make a change. Whether that’s me writing a song or doing some low budget, punk travelling to the other side of the world. Take a chance, do something rather than nothing, make something new. That’s what drives me.
How has your music evolved over the years?
Slowly, haha. But it’s still fun to do, so I’m good with it. And people like what we do, so that’s a nice bonus.
How different is working on your solo project to your time as part of Retard-O-Bot?
Both are great in different ways. ROB was my first band and there was definitely something magical about the way it all evolved. Just being these dumb kids from Florida, having the opportunity to tour the country, meet and make friends with our awesome fans, perform with bands that we loved and make a small footnote in that era of music was the most insane ride ever. Peter Pepper is the natural progression of that experience. It’s ROB 2.0 with all the software updates, RAM and processors maxed out, meaning we can have more fun and adventures because all the fundamental stuff is second nature now, because with ROB we were still figuring all that shit out. And that was important, I’d recommend to anyone thinking about starting a band or a group that is hung up on logistics, just fucking do it. If you don’t start somewhere, you’ll end up talking yourself out of it and getting buried under all the ‘what ifs’. Make something that didn’t exist before you.
How important do you think social media is to the growth of an artist?
Is there an artist that you feel is underrated?
There are countless artist that don’t get the attention they deserve. We’ve toured with some of them. Music and art are suffering right now due to a lack of organic methods of discovery. Pandora, Apple Music and Spotify, they’re convenient but it takes time to get something new and exciting. I’d love to see John Wheeler and any of the projects he’s working on get major attention. I’m happy to see Eric Nally getting new opportunities that are receiving notable attention. The music industry has contracted so much and the business model has changed so much, that overall there is less of a risk taken on content in the fringes and this tends to filter out the art/music that progresses us as a culture.
Do you have a favourite show that you’ve played?
How do you decide the setlist for your shows?
You get a feeling for how you want things to flow and blam-o, that’s it.
What is your favourite animal?
I like the koala bear. The dude’s got two thumbs and hugs things all day. Angler fish are rad too, biting their mates and being absorbed into their body is pretty tight. There’s a ton of epic animals. Like chickens, come on, these things squeeze out breakfast on the reg.
And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself.
An interesting fact… my grandfather was the head of Electron Microscopy at a national laboratory in the 1960s. In addition to contributing research that advanced the field of microscopy, he also worked with lunar samples from Apollo 11. Shortly thereafter another blood relative of mine became the first American astronaut to travel to space and later commanded the Apollo mission to the Moon.
You can check out Peter Pepper here: