Five & Five: Colleen D’Agostino from With Beating Hearts/The Material

I had the distinct honor a while back to review Colleen D’Agostino’s band, “The Material”, and to my surprise she also has a side project, “With Beating Hearts”, that caught me off guard. Colleen released the EP in October 2011, but released a 3 song remix EP of some songs this past July. Colleen was kind enough to  participate  in an interview to reveal what With Beating Hearts is all about.


Part I

KAC: How did you come up with the band name?

CD’A: The band name literally fell out of a book I was reading last summer, which was really nice after looking high and low for a name that meant something to me. With Beating Hearts is a reminder to actually LIVE your life, make use of the talents, and time you are given.

KAC: What artists/bands/songs/albums influenced you?

CD’A: Well in my history with The Material, I was really more into the rock genre with bands like Thrice, Circa Survive, Pierce The Veil, etc. Now my taste has sort of shifted to the electro-pop genre which is where I got the idea for this new project.

KAC: What are you listening to right now?

CD’A: Right now I am really into Ellie Goulding, Nero, Crosses, Bat For Lashes, etc.

KAC: What’s your favortire show/performance been as a band?

CD’A: Actually, With Beating Hearts has yet to play a live show! We are getting our set together as we speak! But as an artist, I would have to say my favorite I have ever played was the Summerfest Music Festival with my band The Material last summer.

KAC: If you want people to remember one song from our band it would be…

CD’A: Probably “Fall Fast”, because it has a great 80’s futuristic vibe to it that I love. The lyrics are dreamy, yet real and relatable. I think Blake did great job of pushing this song to its full potential in his remix. I actually just shot a music video for this song and once we hit 5,000 followers on, the video will be unlocked!


Part II

KAC: The songs, “Fall Fast, My Only Enemy, and Lost Tonight”, on the Summer Remix EP are a drastic change from your previous work with The Material. What made you go in this direction with your music?

CD’A: I think every artist gets to a point in their career where they want to do something outside the box. Growing up, I always wanted to be a pop artist. It wasn’t until I met Jon that I sort of fell into the rock scene. I think this shift towards electro-pop is more of a natural going-back-to-my-roots than anything else.

KAC: Your husband, Jon Moreaux, had a hand with helping you produce this EP, but what was the experience in the studio with him like? Did he contribute to any of the writing or song arrangements?

CD’A: John and I went into the studio last Fall to write and record the original versions of the With Beating Hearts EP. Jon and I have been writing music together for 10 years now so it was an easy transition for him to co-write and co-porduce all five songs on a the album while I wrote the lyrics and melodies. When the songs were almost finished, our producer friend, Brian Grider, recorded my vocals, helped mix, and master the songs. This Spring I decided to see what the songs would sound like if I asked three friends (Blake Harnage of VersaEmerge, Joel Piper and Blake Miller of Moving Units) to remix them and now we have the 3 song Summer Remix EP that was released in July for free on !

KAC: The song, “My Only Enemy”, is the stand out track on the entire EP. What was your inspiration for this song and how did Joel Piper contribute to making this song dynamically diverse?

CD’A: Thank you! Well, I really believe in this song. It is really heartfelt and urges the listener to let go of whatever is holding them back. Which is usually just themselves, and their  insecurities  or fears. When I asked Joel to pick a song to remix, he said, “My Only Enemy”, because he loved the emotion in the song. I basically gave him the freedom to remix it however he wanted and I am really happy with how it came out. I think it reflects both of our styles really well.

KAC: Will you be debuting any of these songs live, solo, or with your band, The Material?

CD’A: Although With Beating Hearts is my solo project, you can definitely expect to see some other members of The Material on stage with me when it comes time for a With Beating Hearts tour.

KAC: What are your future plans concerning your solo work and with The Material? Can we expect to hear any new music in 2013?

CD’A: Definitely! The Material is going into the studio to record a new album later this month and I will also be headed to Florida to record a new EP for With Beating Hearts with Blake Harnage later this year. Lots of new music coming your way…

Once again, it was a pleasure to speak with Colleen because she is one of the unsung female vocalist of 2012. Be sure to check out With Beating Hearts’ Facebook page and like it so that a new video can be unlocked! Thank you for reading and stay tuned for the next edition of EMURG’s 5 & 5 series!