Nico Play Interview


(Photo by Farrah Fox)


1. What have you been listening to lately?

I’ve been pretty content just listening to some CD’s I have in my car - David Bowie, The Cure, Radiohead... The last new music I listened to was Crumb’s record ‘Ice Melt’.


2. I read in a previous interview that you’re pretty good at soccer. You trying to start a team?

Where did you read that?! Haha I do love playing soccer. Yes, let’s start a team!


3.What album or artist first made you fall in love with music?

Fleet Foxes for sure, they were really big for me in middle/high school. I first started learning to play chords and sing covering their songs.


4. Have you ever seen a ghost?

Dude yes. Camp Howard was on tour and we were staying in what I later found out was a “haunted” studio. I fell asleep in this closet in the basement with no natural light that had an old industrial furnace from like a hundred years ago. Anyway, I had this dream that I was at home with my dad in the kitchen and this little girl that was dressed like an industrial revolution child worker (search that on google images) walked past me and into another room. I asked my dad if he saw her and he said no and I woke up with chills in pitch black and couldn’t find my phone. Even though it was only a dream it felt like I had just encountered an uninvited intruding presence. It was so outside of where my mind would normally go when I dream that I still feel like I really saw the ghost of a little girl who worked in a factory a long time ago. And of course the next morning I told Kevin who owns the studio and he was like, “oh yeah dude tons of people have experiences here, that’s sick man.”


5. First concert you ever attended?

I think it was Fleet Foxes in D.C. in like 2011.


6. Any spanish artists or bands that you’ve been into lately?

Not really recently, but two specifically Spanish artists I’ve gone through phases of listening to are Mourn and Rosalía. Oh and this band called Nacha Pop that I heard growing up. But as far as just spanish-speaking artists from other countries go I like Silvio Rodríguez, Divino Niño, Gustavo Cerati to name a few.


7. What soccer player do you think would like your music the most?

I have no idea hahaha, maybe Xavi. I got to meet him on the street once, he was so nice I feel like he’d say he liked it even if he didn’t.


8. How do we stop them from releasing the new SpaceJam movie?

I don’t know we could always try blackmail but we’d have to get some serious dirt to stop Warner from releasing a movie.


9. What is the worst advice that you can give me?

Overthink things as much as you can. Also sleep and nutrition are not important, water’s for losers and don’t ever give therapy a chance.


10. Any local bands or artists that we should check out?

It’s been so long since I saw a local band play :( Some favorites - Alfred., Recluse Raccoon, Kenneka Cook, Kate Bollinger, Shormey, Twain.



(Photo by Henry Archer)

Isaac Gutierrez for Born Loser Mag: To start things off, can you introduce yourself?

Nic Perea: Hello! My name is Nic Perea and I make music as Nico Play.




What was your first introduction to music?

Well my parents listened to a lot of music, and my dad played guitar when I was growing up. My older brother also learned to play guitar pretty young, and I bought a bass in middle school so that’s how I started playing music.




Who do you consider your musical inspirations?

It’s always changing but lately it’s just the CD’s I have in my car - David Bowie, The Cure, Radiohead. But there’s been so many influences over the years it’s almost unfair to name just a few.




While doing research on Nico Play I found this tweet which left me with more questions than answers. YOU’RE STILL DOING CAMP HOWARD THOUGH RIGHT?


Hahaha ah ok. In short, yes Camp Howard has tour dates this fall so we’ll be playing some shows. There’s a little bit of truth to the meme in that for so long the future of Camp Howard has been pretty uncertain, and really I’m not sure if things will ever go back to the way they were pre-pandemic for us as a band. But ultimately, I made the meme and thought it was funny and couldn’t resist posting it, although I did get some concerned messages.




All jokes aside, was your approach or mindset different going into this project?

It has been yeah. This is the first time that I’ve recorded myself with the intention of releasing it, so in that sense it’s totally different. I’m very much alone in the process and work at my own pace. I feel like I can execute my vision a bit more efficiently, but I’m really just doing whatever I want which is nice haha.




Is it exciting to bring a new project to life?

It is! It’s a little daunting to start from scratch just cause I’ve spent so much time and energy helping to create some sort of platform with Camp Howard, but yes it’s also very exciting. Somewhat liberating and fun and it feels good and I like what I’m doing.




Do you have any plans for Nico Play, or are you just kind of feeling it out as you go along?

I’m planning to follow-up “Bluff” with a couple more singles. I might then release them together as an EP with some more tracks, but I’m also just testing the water somewhat to begin with.




Can you give us some background on Nico Play’s debut single Bluff?



During lockdown I was playing a lot of dice with my family - specifically a Mexican dice game called Mentirosa. I got the concept for the song, art, and music video during that time as a means of expressing the dynamics between the people I love and myself during a difficult and complicated time.




Can we expect an EP or an album some day?

Likely an EP first, but yeah someday I hope to release a full album as well. We’ll see, hopefully things go well!




Is there anything that you want your listeners to take away from the song?

I don’t know, I mean hopefully the takeaway is ‘that was a good song, I’m going to listen to it again and share it with all my friends and support this artist’. Artistically I’ve done my part, and now it’s up to whoever listens to take away what they can. Hopefully it means something to someone.




You go back and forth from english to spanish on the song. Is that a conscious choice you make when writing the song? Or are you following your train of thought?

I guess it’s sort of train-of-thought, the spanish just sort of takes over when it feels natural. I’ll make a conscious decision to write a certain verse in spanish, but only when it feels right.




How important is it to you to embrace your culture/language in your work?

It’s very important to me. It makes me feel connected to the little kid in Mexico that I used to be. It makes me feel closer to my family.




Any advice for anyone out there trying to pursue music?

From my experience I’d say: Enjoy the moment. Try to find balance in your life. Take care of yourself. The music industry is f*cked. Try to have fun!




What can we expect to see/hear from Nico Play in the near future?

I’m working on a couple of singles at the moment to follow up “Bluff”. And I’m hoping to do a debut Nico Play live performance sometime soon. Aside from that I’ll be on tour with Camp Howard this fall.




And to wrap things up, do you have any questions for me?

Yes - what is your soccer team? Who do you think will win Euro 2020? What is your favorite movie? Have you ever been in love? And thank you so much for doing this!!!

Oh man, I always feel weird being on this side of an interview. I don't know why I asked if you had any questions.

1. My favorite soccer team is Man United.

2. If I was a betting man, I'd say Italy is going to win the Euro in penalties against England.

3. I have no idea what my favorite movie is, but it's definitely not the new Space Jam.

4. I've been in love once. It was alright.

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