The first time I heard Howlin Rain was through a video of them playing live at the Ameoba Records store in Hollywood. After hearing the opener to 'Dancers At The End Of TIme' I instantly become a fan. Their mix of blues/rock/psychedelia with the danceable groove of a James Brown concert was a breath of fresh air to my ears. We caught up with the singer/guitarist of the band, Ethan Miller, for a brief chat. Can you tell our readers more about your band, like how you started and what you do? Ethan Miller, Singer, Songwriter, Guitarist for Howlin Rain. Howlin Rain basically began in about 2004 with a handful of songs kicking around that became the first album. I was in between albums with my other band comets on fire and these songs were springing up onto the page that were different than Comets songs and Howlin Rain was born for a place for this other side of my songwriting to go. I recently sent some questions to Wooden Shjips about their relationship to California and whether or not it had an influence on the music they make. Seeing as you're based in California, I was wondering what you thought about that question? An artists environment always influences them no matter what. You just can't get away from that. Your environment heats your body to a certain degree, the sounds you hear, the type of air you breath, the pressure or absence of pressure from the culture you are immersed in. Both the physical and mythological character of California looms so huge, I think it has and extra impact on the artists mind, because California is your literal environment but it is also a symbolic environment. As a person who lives and has grown up in California you sort of just take for granted that symbolic side of California because it's your home but when you are writing rock and roll music I believe that subconscious symbolism becomes tangible again whether you really want it to or not. We live at the far edge of the western world. Expansion ends here. How can that not be a fully loaded concept for the California writer? One of my friends is a huge fan of yours and subsequently I started to listen to you more and more but the point in which I went "wow, they're good!" was when I watched a video of you playing live at Amoeba records. How was that? On my recent trip to California I went to Amoeba in LA and San Francisco and it was like finding the holy grail. Do you get the same feeling when you visit? Yes. I love Amoeba Records. Though Amoeba Berkeley is my usual haunting ground. It is smaller, more low key. Easier for me to find treasures there. vinyl records are heavenly gifts brought to this world to reproduce music in the most beautiful way possible for us to enjoy. You released Magnificent Fiend this year. Personally It's up there as one of my favourite records of the year. So with that said,Whats a magnificent fiend? and whats your favourite record of the year? I'd prefer to not comment on my album title and leave that open to interpretation. That's what the whole point of making albums is about. I hate it when artists explain away every bit of mystery. You find out some piece of music you thought had so many facets because of the way your ear and imagination were interacting with it is really just a throwaway idea some guy came up with while he was taking a shit. If An artist has done their job right then an artist's imagination is NEVER as rich and as deep as the artists and the listeners imagination colliding. The greatest album of the year (2008) in my opinion was Earth's "The Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull". A truly beautiful and accomplished album. How do you feel about the Psychedelic tag you get? I like it I guess. It's more there to aid other people when they talk about music. But as far as tags go I think "psychedelic" is much more interesting and mightier sounding than "indie" or "Emo" or "posi-core". Thank god I got psychedelic. Could you imagine wearing one of those other ones around? What other bands out there excite you? E: Earth, The Magik Markers, Sic Alps, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Crystal Antlers, Growing. What does the future hold for Howlin Rain? I am writing furiously this winter. Probably recording in the spring or early summer for the next album. Some tid bits now and then between then, including the vinyl release of the Wild Life EP, the first album's vinyl issue and some other treats here and there. We'll be back to Europe in the  summer for festivals. If you could leave our readers with one thing, what would it be? A gift certificate for $180 to Amoeba Records! You can visit the fantastic Howlin Rain at Listen: MP3: Howlin Rain - Show Business