After finding huge satisfaction in Zodiac N Black‘s debut album “The Aftermyth,” ThisIsNotAScene‘s Ian Girle put a few questions to Zodiac N Black‘s vocalist and co-founder Jad. They talked about the album, origins of the band, the writing process, touring and more…
First of all congratulations on your fantastic new album, “The Aftermyth”. How has the reaction been so far?
The reaction has been overwhelmingly positive thus far. Most importantly, the people who come to the gigs have taken to the album and seem to really enjoy it.
How did you originally come together as a band?
Myself (Jad – vocals) and Jim (guitar) met in another band and left at the same time, then started writing some songs together and went and found Luca (drums) and Marek (bass) through ads.
Is there a musical philosophy that underpins what you do?
Our philosophy is simply that it should sound good. Whatever style anyone wants to put into the music is always at least tried, and if it works then great. Also, each member has to serve the song and not just show off their ability on their instrument.
If you could point someone who’s never heard your music before to one song that represents the essence of where Zodiac N Black are right now, which one would it be and why?
That’s an extremely difficult question as we try and do something different in each song. But, I would say a song like “A Necessary Evil” would give you a representation of the places we like to go within a song.
How did you decide on Alex Newport to mix the album?
Alex Newport found us. We got in contact with a few mixers and had decided on one in particular. Then, 2 days before we were going to go ahead with said person, Alex Newport contacted us and he was a perfect fit for us, because of the bands he had worked with (The Melvins, Mars Volta, etc.) and the equipment he uses, which is all vintage stuff. It was basically a no brainer at that point.
How do you write – individually or collectively?
It’s all very dependent on the track. Everything is about the song, and if a certain song needs 4 people writing on it, then that’s what happens. But generally myself or Jim will come in with the basic structure and then it moves from there.
How much of your writing happens in the studio, and how many songs are ready to roll when you get there?
None of the writing was done in the studio. Everything was pre planned for the album and minimal takes were done. We did not have the money to go and start writing in the studio. We tried all our ideas out before we set foot in the studio to record.
Tell me about the band’s name – how did it come about?
The name comes from a painting by Don Van Vliet which is called “Zodiac N Back”. We thought that putting Black in made it sound cooler!
What plans do you have to tour?
At the moment, everything is waiting to be confirmed and we should know in the next few weeks. Our next show is on 11th August at the Dublin Castle in London.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Just to say thanks to Ian from ThisIsNotAScene for listening to the album and being so patient waiting for me to answer these questions! It’s taken some time, but finally I’ve answered them. Thanks again.
Thank you Zodiac N Black for taking the time to talk to ThisIsNotAScene and very best of luck with the album.