Saturday, February 07, 2015

The Inquisition: 038.The Boats (an interview with J. Byron)


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

We came up with the name after giving titles to the first songs we jammed. For a long time the band was temporarily titled 'instrumental jam project' and then we were naming songs and we called one of the tracks 'The Sea Is In The Boat' and out of that we decided to call the band The Boats. I can't remember who instigated that now, but it felt right. 

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? 

The way we approach creating songs has always been relatively the same...we start with an improvisational jam, with variations on structure and discipline. When we approached recording 'Los Musicos Perdidos', we first improvised and recorded those rehearsal sessions, listened back and began structuring certain songs; such as 'The Sea is in The Boat' and 'Little Black Rays of Hope', while other tracks such as '2 AM' and 'Asylum' were pure improvisational jams. When we recorded Segundo, we mostly improvised, however some tracks we had dabbled with live like 'Hammer Down Your Gentle Sharks' and I also brought in riffs, such as the start of 'There's Not a Fire that can Warm Us' and we would structure the beginning of a track like that and then literally jam the rest. This process gave us the freedom to keep a certain spontaneity with songs, while first laying down a foundation. It was a great idea that worked well. I think the process also comes down to who we are as individual musicians, for instance, Nick's styles and influences can be heard a lot on our debut album 'Los Musicos Perdidos', where I produced 'Segundo', and my styles and influences come through more on the new album. The records somewhat reflect our personal tastes at the time, and yet I believe we still remain a band with our own sound. 

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

My personal influences vary from year to year, but I think I can speak for the band when I mention Godspeed, The Dirty Three, Set Fire to Flames and some early Explosions In The for my own influences, it is widely varied, lately I'm listening a lot to the new Bjork album, lots of modern classical like Max Richter, Nils Frahm and A Winged Victory For The Sullen. But these influences can change year to year, as I said, I can't speak for what the other guys are listening to right now.

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

That's a really hard question because I don't think there's any one album I couldn't live without, there are so many. If I had to choose one and just one I suppose it would be out of Richter's Infra and Nils Frahm's Felt. Both albums send me to other worlds...but if I had to live off just one album that might not bore me ever, it might have to be a Locil record, as he's so minimalist. 

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

Probably Metallica's Kill 'Em All on vinyl. 

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

A Black Heart Procession. 

7. 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? 

Absolutely. Our first album was spread mainly via blogs and web sites... with fans posting our albums online, we have been able to reach a wider audience. As for a country where I felt surprised our music where yet. Our music has reached all around the world and I think that's the power of the Internet, so I'm not surprised at all, just very happy when someone buys an album. I think with all the pirated music available now, it really makes a difference when someone supports an indie band like ours. 

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

Bandcamp is an amazing platform that gives a lot of control back to artists and allows fans to interact more personally with artists, it's been wonderful for us. I'm not really supportive of Spotify, because there are major labels behind it all trying to cash in on the new music revolution, but I think services like Bandcamp really give so much power back to the artist, and are relatively cost effective. I also think a lot of musicians and artists head to Bandcamp first to buy music these days, to support their fellow musicians, which I do myself and totally respect. 

9. Where do you see yourselves in 5 years? 

Personally, I'd like to be producing more bands and creating film soundtracks, which I'm already doing. I'm also a film maker, so I really want to be doing a lot more of that over the next few years. 

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

Yes I believe it is. Artwork reflects the spirit of the album, it creates an image that listeners can relate to, take Bjork's albums for example. Each one is a work of art, and says something about her music. Segundo's artwork was created by the amazing French artist Karine Pollens and speaks of summer, apocalypse and abandoned cities. It depicts an imaginary future which the music captures, and which I believe she captured perfectly. She's one of my favourite artists and I feel so grateful to work with her. 

11. What is you favorite album cover? 

Probably the cover Melt by Young Magic, because it's so minimal and beautiful but if you want to talk classic, probably Dark Side of The Moon.

12. 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? 

I think vinyl is classic and popular because of very simple reasons: firstly, vinyl was the first opportunity for people to listen to recorded music. It's nostalgia harks back to the 1930's and hasn't lost its appeal. I also believe vinyl is something very special these days because of its tactile nature; the fact that you can open up a vinyl record, physically feel the artwork and wax, there is something very special about that, it becomes a ritual when listening to an album. As a band, we want to release far more vinyl. 

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

I don't know, probably a show at a massive church with projected visuals and other amazing special guests playing, back in Melbourne in 2008, I think. It was very special and memorable.

More info:
Official Site

0 Engineers:

Also check