Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Inquisition: 048.Sleeping Bear

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

Sleeping Bear name was a result of quite an intense brainstorming before our debut show in April 2013. We signed to play a concert in Kyiv and we still did not have any name, that's why we were in urgent need of coming up with a good idea in quite a short period of time. We have discussed lots of different options, and after a long discussion Sleeping Bear was approved.

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?

Not really. Some of early tracks were written by our guitarist Oleksiy and then improved by all the members of the band during rehearsals. Some other tracks have been created from random jams, when everyone of band members shared their ideas and together we composed the track. And we believe, this is the right way to do things, when you play in the band - everyone should be involved into composition and dedicate himself to all this.

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

Oleksiy: I try to keep my music taste diverse as much as it's possible. I can shuffle black metal and pop music in my playlist. Aside of post-rock I am pretty much into ambient and modern classical genre. My record collection includes lots of albums by contemporary composers like Olafur Arnalds, Nils Frahm, Fabrizio Paterlini etc. I have another project of mine in that genre, it is called Endless Melancholy.
Evgeniy: I listen to lots of different music, not limiting myself to any certain genre. At the very beginning I got the inspiration to play post-rock from such bands as This Will Destroy You, God Is An Astronaut, Mono, Jakob, *Shels, Blueneck, Balmorhea, Hammock. Of those bands which have slightly heavier sound - Isis, Rosetta, to name just a few... I am a big fan of Tool and A Perfect Circle. I also love experimental genres combining classic sound of live instruments with electronic music, as Bonobo and Submotion Orchestra do. I like getting inspiration absolutely from everywhere. You can find something new and interesting for yourself in any genre and it may become an incentive of writing a new composition.
Arthur: My Bloody Valentine, Sonic Youth, Portishead.

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

Oleksiy: I'd never could point one particular favorite album out, there's simply too many of them.
Evgeniy: Jakob – Dominion. For me it's not just music, it's like a trip to your own inner world.
Arthur: Beastie Boys - Check Your Head.

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

Oleksiy: When I was a little kid I was a fan of cheesy dance and techno music, I think the first cassette I ever bought was of that kind. Talking about the first record I bought when I became a vinyl fan awhile ago - it was "Felt" by Nils Frahm.
Yevgeniy: It was a cassette with "Load" album by Metallica long ago. Pirated, of course (it was impossible to get a licensed copy in that time, they simply haven't been on sale here). Metallica and Nirvana were the bands, from which my passion to music has started when I was 12 or 13 years old.
Arthur: Sonic Youth - Corporate Ghost.

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

Yevgeniy: There is lots of them (definitely, all the bands I have listed above as my inspirations), but most of all, probably, Tool. Not that I was dreaming to share the stage with them but rather to visit their show. We will be sharing the stage with Russian Circles this spring on Asymmetry Festival in Poland. It's a big honor for us, too.
Arthur: Jakob, Mogwai, God Is An Astronaut.

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?

At this moment internet is the only good way for us to share our music with people. And this is really great. It's difficult to imagine, would anyone even know about us, if we started making our music 10 or 15 years ago. Most likely only our friends would be familiar with it. It is a very exceptional and pleasant feeling to read a feedback on your creation from somebody from the opposite side of the planet. You understand that despite all the differences between our cultures, religions, views there is something uniting all of us. And this something is music.

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

Yes, it's a great idea. We don't have our music up on Spotify, but thanks to Bandcamp we have a chance to cover part of the recording expenses. We aren't signed to any label and we organize everything ourselves - composing, recording, mixing, mastering, cover arts. The money we receive from Bandcamp we invest in our further activities.

9. Where do you see yourselves in 5 years?

In 5 years we'd love to see ourselves living in a successful country with no war. And of course, continuing making music.

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

Of course, we think that the cover art should necessarily reflect those emotions that you put into music. It must carry some idea instead of being just a nice picture.

11. What is you favorite album cover?

Yevgeniy: *Shels - Plains Of The Purple Buffalo.

Oleksiy: Same thing as with pointing out a favorite album... Too many great cover arts. Well, Mono - Hymn To The Immortal Wind, Alcest - Écailles De Lune and Les Voyages De l'Âme, Jakob - Solace, to name just a few.

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?

Oleksiy: I am a big fan of vinyl, I have a collection of records, that is constantly growing... Having music released on vinyl gives a very special felling about an album. Not only because of the audio quality, but also because vinyl record is literally a piece of art you can enjoy even just looking at it. I have released an album by my solo-project Endless Melancholy on vinyl. With Sleeping Bear we prefer digital format so far, however we've made a short run of CD's with our debut album.

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

We guess, winning a contest and getting an invitation to play on Asymmetry Festival 2015 edition, to take place in Wroclaw, Poland in May 2015. It's going to be our first show outside Ukraine.

Sleeping Bear recently released their stunning second release, "Parinae" EP.

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