Saturday, January 31, 2015

The Inquisition: 035.Lights & Motion

photography by Fredrik Sellergren

1. How did you came up with the name of the band? 

I really wanted to have something that would sort of stick out and have some sort of visual impact. I was thinking about what kind of music I wanted to write and how that might be best put into adjectives. Then I saw clips from a huge U2 show they did at a stadium and as they walked on stage the house lights turned on and Bono said ”Light and motion” into the microphone towards the audience in awe and that just stuck with me. 

2. Do you have a standard procedure of creating a song? Do you just jam around or is there a main riff and the track is build up on it? 

That varies a great deal. I have a 1000+ of recorded voice memos and small recordings on my phone, and it features everything from a hummed melody to a drumbeat and a piano hook. There is no sure way of knowing how the songs come together. Sometimes I´ll just set up all my guitar gear with my pedalboard and jam and see if anything jumps out at me. When that moment come where I feel like I might have something worth working towards, I pretty quickly starts to sketch out the bigger picture in my head - Where do I want this to go, what should the production look like, that sort of thing. But usually there is some sort of main hook that I build around, and that is often a guitar line or a piano melody. The way I like to write is that everything affects everything. So by adding a small piece of sonic identity in the song, that in turn will completely change how that piano feels because now they interact with each other, creating new colours. It sounds somewhat abstract, I know, and I guess it is.. But that is just how I see it coming together. It´s almost like sonic architecture. 

3. What are your influences and what kind of music do you hear when you are at home? 

My influences vary greatly, and have done ever since I dived headlong into music in my teens. One thing that is a red thread is melody; I always choose a good melody over anything else, like speed/virtuosity or production tricks. I love older Coldplay stuff and I was a really big fan of U2 for a few years. Now I listen to a lot of film music actually. Currently spinning Alexander Desplat´s score for The Imitation Game, but other favourites are James Horner´s score for A Beautiful Mind and of course most of what Hans Zimmer is doing. However, I do mix all of my own music so the sad truth is that often times I´m walking around listening to mixes of songs that I´m working on, taking notes of that I want to change in the mix etc. I´m an avid perfectionist and most tracks on Chronicle have probably gone through 25-50 mix revisions before I felt like it was all like I wanted it to sound. So that takes up A LOT of time. 

4. How did you feel, when you realized that your music will be used for such big movies trailers?

That was definitely a "pinch me” moment. I have always been a huge fan of cinema and I love watching movies. When I was 18 I got a big big book called ”1001 Movies you need to see before you die” and I made it into a habit to devour a decade of that every week. By then I thought that maybe I would go into working in movies somehow, like in production, but it´s now that I can look back at that and see it come full circle in a way that I never would have expected. But most of all it is just an extraordinary honor and it´s nothing that I would ever take for granted. I feel like I need to earn those spots every single time. 

5. Which is the one album you can't live without? 

I tend to overindulge and just listen to stuff until my ears bleed and then move on to something else.. But I would have to say Metallica´s S&M Double Disc concert from back in 99 when they played alongside a full orchestra in San Fransisco. To this date it gives me goosebumps, and I have listened to that album so much that I used to be able to tell what song it was based on the sound of the crowd applauding before the band even started. 

6. What's the first record you've ever bought?

 Believe it or not but I vaguely remember it being the Backstreet Boys Millennium album. I actually still think those songs hold up today. Great craftsmanship of coming up with memorable hooks that stay in peoples brains after all this time. Not sure if we can say that about much of the contemporary music that´s being played on the radio today. Also, a lot of it was written by Swedes so maybe I’m partial in that way. ^^ 

7. Name a band that you would like to share the stage or tour with? 

Well, if I could dream it would definitely be Coldplay.. But M83 would be cool, and if Hans Zimmer would ever feel the need to come out on stage with his piano he would be more then welcome to pick a spot in my hypothetical lineup. 

8. Did the internet and specially the blogs helped to spread your music around the world? Name a place (country) that you were surprised to know your music has reached to?

I think so, yeah for sure. I have been working super closely with my label Deep Elm from day one, but we have always had to put our hopes to word of mouth and for people to tell other people. I started getting emails and messages around the time of the Reanimation release, from people over in China and Malaysia. That was mind-blowing to me, and I guess one of the perks of being a musician in the 21h century. You can reach far beyond your personal geography with the help of the internet and that is just amazing. We are so thankful to people that write about the music we put out, because it´s almost always a passion project from their side, much like this is for me. Without that kind of support, we wouldn’t have managed to get to where we are today, of that I´m sure. 

9. Do you support the idea of Bandcamp where fans can decide the price or services like Spotify?

When you are a musician, you want to get your music heard. That is priority number one. The digital era have changed a lot about how music is perceived and at what value people are willing to consume it. It´s far to easy to just view it as something that just magically appeared infront of your computer, and don’t realise the months (if not years) of hard work that is behind it, and the thousands and thousands of dollars being put into something like a full-length album. But then again many people are students and are struggling with their own economy, so we figured that we would make it available so that everyone who wants to hear it can. We greatly appreciated any support people show us, and sometimes it just knocks the breath of you when you see that a guy or girl at the other side of the world have paid 3 times the regular amount for your album. What kindness that is. 

10. Where do you see yourselves in 5 years? 

I would love to have gotten the chance to write a full score for a feature length film. It has been a dream of mine for some time. 

11. Is the artwork of an album important nowadays in the digital era? 

Man, I obsess over artwork to an insane degree and usually go weeks feeling miserable thinking about what I want, how it should reflect upon the album and what it should say to the listeners. But then again I am very determined and involved when it comes to all things visual. There is no real line drawn between that and the music, for me they coexist. 

12. What is you favorite album cover? 

U2´s Joshua Tree.

13. It seems that a lot of people are turning on vinyl again. Why do you think that is and which is your preferable media format? 

It does! I guess people are returning to the value of having something physical in your hands, and something you can save for years to come. You will never accidentally loose it on a hardrive or delete it by accident. I think you invest more of yourself in the music when you have something to hold on to, and therefor I think Vinyl is the optimum medium for that. CD´s are still around but Vinyl gives you that little extra sense of exclusivity maybe? I gotta say that for me, I listen digitally 99% of the time. I´m always on the move and I cant go anywhere without my headphones, I freak out if I don’t have music to fill the silence of everyday life. 

14. What's the most vivid story or moment as a band? 

That would be sitting at home in Sweden, watching my music being played at the 2013 years Oscars. That was pretty mind-blowing to put it lightly. Still feels like a dream.

Lights & Motion recently released yet another amazing album called "Chronicle". Check it out here:

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