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Nothing Made a Bunch of Emojis So We Interviewed Them

The Philadelphia shoegaze band announces an emoji line, which is some pretty weird news to break, but we’re here for it.

If you're a fan of ultra-heavy shoegaze that's loud enough to make your neighbors hate and love you forever, you're probably stoked about the new record from Philadelphia's Nothing. The upcoming record Tired Of Tomorrow drops next Friday May 13, and is shaping up to be their most intense release yet, bringing together one of the worst years in the band's life in a cathartic boom of an album. But Nothing have an entrepenurial spirit, and want to make sure their vision infects every medium out there. Which is why they've gone where no gazey, indie band in their scene has, and are launching their own set of emojis.


Today, the band's emojis are coming live through the app Emoji Fame, putting them in the same ranks as other artists with their own emojis like Lil' B, Future, and Kim Kardashian. But instead of the usual boring shit like a series of butts and thumbs up them, Nothing brings their humor to mobile devices everywhere, ranging from battered portraits of the band to classy CoronoRitas. Every emoji is hyper specific, forgoing the metaphors people have attached to eggplants and ballroom dancers. Need to tell someone you need a 40 and a guitar? You're covered. Maybe you need a variety of gravestones to tell your friend exactly how you're feeling? Also covered. Or maybe one of your friends is droning on about how they don't like Nothing because of tenuous ties to other problematic bands? Throw down the boxing gloves and tell them the score. With a world obsessively using emojis to express any fleeting emotion, it's about time a someone buckled down and got weird and fucked up with it. Whatever scenario you find yourself in, you can be sure there's a perfect emoji to let people know what's up through the voice and spirit of Philly's saviors.

We spoke to Nicky Palermo from Nothing and Gavin Rhodes from Emoji fame about all the potential applications of these emojis.

Noisey: Well, this is a pretty incredible endeavour for Nothing. How the hell did it happen?
Gavin Rhodes: Basically someone came to us and was like “would you be interested in doing this?” We launched with primarily hip-hop emoji sets. And I was like “hells yeah.” I was familiar with their tunes and stuff but I wasn’t super familiar with their aesthetic. And then looking at their Instagram and stuff it was like “oh dude, this’ll be amazing.”


Nicky: I was checking out the Furture emojis and shit. I remember having a discussion with Bob the president of Relapse Records, I was like “is there any way we could make this happen, it’d be pretty fucking cool.” And he introduced us, and he went to work for sure.

What emoji do you think is the absolute definition of Nothing?
Nicky: There’s quite a bit of us in that for sure. The burning Philadelphia cop cars are good, I like the money on fire, the percocets and xanax was pretty on point. We have a yellowtail mock up bottle of wine. Honestly it’s all just narcotics I feel like. So yeah, it’s pretty cool.

The percocet emojis are pretty tight. If all goes well, hopefully your brand of emojis will be the standard of street-corner drug dealing everywhere!
Nicky: I hope so. [Laughs] We also did a mockup of an Applebees and a Taco Bell logo with our name in it, I hang out at Applebees pretty much every day or in the Taco Bell parking lot.

Yeah looking at them, you can definitely line them to tell your pals what’s up. You start with the percocet emoji, then the Taco Bell, and maybe the handcuffs. Your boys will know what’s good.
Nicky: Oh yeah.I might have to switch it up to a TGI Fridays in case people come through too heavy.

Gavin: Or Chili’s. I’m a Chili’s guy.

Nicky: It’s funny, we talk shit about Applebee's all the time on Twitter, Applebee's started following us on Twitter and I fuck with them all the time. I talk about how I’m going to kill myself in there, and their social media person is so funny. They ignore it and they’re like “well why don’t you come in and have a two for one appetizer instead!” It’s funny, I just get stoned at my house by myself and just do it. It’s funny now, all these other people see us connected with Applebee's. They tried to send us a $500 gift certificate, since I guess we were plugging them so hard. But I had my manager look at it, there’s fine-print and they litterally tried to get us to sign all our music over to Applebee’s. They tried to fuck us super bad.


Yeah, Applebee’s records is moving up in the world.
Nicky: Maybe for a stack I woulda did it. Or if the band is ever about to break up, I’m going to sign that contract quick and send it in, tell the rest of the band to fuck off.

Gavin: Maybe you can negotiate a lifetime supply of CoronaRitas.

Nicky: That’s all I really go there for anyways, I never eat food there. The one I hang out in in Kensington, I’m starting to notice the regulars there. There’s this one angry dude who drinks Diet Coke and scribbles angrily into a yellow legal pad. It’s fucking crazy.

Does the staff recognize you at this point?
Nicky: I try not to talk to anyone in there, cause I just want to avoid all that.

Who’s the dog emoji?
Nicky: That’s my dog Pierre. He’s a part of this band, so I figured he had to be there. I do everything with him.

Gavin: It’s actually been a common theme, Pierre’s in there and that band Bleached has a dog named Benny, and Zakk Wylde’s rottweiler, pug, and english bulldog.

Were there specific emojis you knew had to get in there? Like how high a priority did you set the percocet emoji?
Nicky: The first time we had a conversation, I was like kinda hesitant. I would be like “oh what about some wine, or a blunt or some pills? Or that burning cop car?” and I don’t think I ever got to a point where he said no, like we could do whatever the fuck we want. I think if we ever do an update we’ll keep pushing it.


What do you think the worst emoji ever is?
Nicky: I really don’t know. I really enjoy most of them. I don’t like that the needle emoji is full of red. When I think of needles I usually don’t think of taking stuff out. Not that that’s stuff that I do, but it was always like who wants a taking blood out thing? It should be some gnarly stuff going in. I’m surprised on some of them. I wish they had a better gun that wasn’t a revolver.

I guess that’s why your shotgun emoji is a good addition.
Nicky: Yeah, we did that for Kurt Cobain. Yeah, rest in peace Kurt.

Yeah, expressing suicidal feelings or thoughts has never been easier with these new emojis.
Nicky: Yeah, I’ve been using the baby head with the gun next to it for suicide, like “I wanna kill myself’ kind of thing in text for so long. I was a little nervous about making a singular one emoji with a guy sticking a gun to his head. But I feel like nowadays somebody would give us a hard time about it.

Gavin: Oh, I thought we were going to do that.

Nicky: I just don’t want to get yelled at by a 14-year-old on Tumblr.

Gavin: Please don’t get our app shut down. Yeah one of the cool things is once the app is live, we can add stuff in on the fly. So we’ll keep it fresh in the coming months, like for bands we create area code text blocks for tour stops. But there’s so many ideas once you go down the rabbit hole of emojis.

Nicky: One of the updates we talked about was to start dropping in pictures of our homies in the app, like Bob Bruno in Best Coast, or Trinidad James, Lee from Trash Talk, faces you would definitely know.


Cool. I guess to close, there’s been a lot of dicussion happening about whether or not emojis have the power to eliminate the need for the written language. I was wondering if you two could weigh in on that?
Gavin: It’s interesting. We basically started with emojis, cave drawings were the first form of written language. [Laughs] We’re going to come full circle and just have emoji speak? I hope not.

Nicky: Maybe in America. I’d rather see people talking in emojis than see what they really have to say, it’s pretty atrocious to read what people write about and care about on a daily basis. So I’d rather see smiley faces or something like that. It would also make it easier to go to Asia for sure, because that shit is so difficult to navigate.

Yeah, just go to any country and not worry about any of that shit.
Nicky: And then you wouldn’t ever have to hear people talk again. All talking would cease to exist and you’d never have to hear anyone speak again. That would be ideal.

Send John all your emojis on Twitter @JohnXHill

See all the sick celebrity emojis you can grab for your phone with Emoji Fame.