Dallas is a Home Away from Home for Delta Spirit's Matthew Vasquez

Spoiler alert: we didn't ask Delta Spirit about their rad sweaters
Spoiler alert: we didn't ask Delta Spirit about their rad sweaters
Sam Kweskin

"We want to write epic songs so that we can do big, epic shows," says Matthew Vasquez, frontman for Delta Spirit. Speaking from a tour stop in Chicago during a lightning storm, Vasquez says that he is ready to return to Dallas. He gets his wish tonight as his band plays the Granada Theater.

"The last time we played Dallas, it was a ton of fun," says Vasquez, "but that scaffolding (in the Granada Theater) is kind of scary to climb on."

Besides the rather dangerous stage activities, Vasquez and the rest of Delta Spirit seem to always enjoy their time in Big D. And the crowds have always responded with equal enthusiasm.

"I was pretty exhausted after that show," says Vasquez, "and the crowd was great. That's usually the way it is. We were all just dripping with sweat. It feels good and then you shower and you drink a bunch of water. It just feels good to get out and get your exercise"

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Delta Spirit's symbiotic relationship with our area has to do partly with Vasquez being from Austin. He spent his formative years in the Hill Country before his family moved out west.

"I grew up in Austin in the late '90s," says Vasquez. "My dad moved us out to California and that's how I met the rest of the band out busking in San Diego. They heard me play and they said, 'Hey man, you're good.'"

But the kind of adulation Delta Spirit receives is like that of a local band. The feeling at the most recent shows was like when local legends Old 97's, Slobberbone and Polyphonic Spree perform. The Dallas scene has kind of adopted Delta Spirit.

And why not? For one, the band mixes rootsy Americana with interesting elements of pop and rock much like the Old 97's. Delta Spirit also acts like a local band in that they never take their audience for granted.

"We are just five guys without any bullshit," says Vasquez. "We want as little bullshit as possible."

Vasquez also has to quibble a bit with the Americana connection.

"It's not that we didn't want to play any of that [Americana] music," he says. "It's really that we didn't want to get stuck in that style, in that in-one-door-and-out-the-other-door [sense]. We are not that band. You can hear the Americana element in the first album and a little bit in the second one and that element still exists in Delta Spirit."

Vasquez is less concerned with any labels slapped on Delta Spirit than he is with discussing Into the Wide, the soon-to-be-released new album.

"Into the Wide is about living in New York," he says. "We had just moved from California. We walked into Hurricane Sandy and then we lost all our recording equipment. We had to rebuild our studio. We wrote a lot of songs and it took longer than it normally does. The album has a lot of heavier material."

Hopefully, the heavier material will not be a turn-off to the band's fan base. Vazquez doesn't seem too concerned seeing that the band changed directions on 2012's self-titled effort and that album attracted more fans than previous releases.

"We are just going to play the music that we loved and have fun with it," says Vasquez. "We weren't thinking about making money."

Delta Spirit performs with EDJ tonight, September 10, at the Granada Theater.

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