- Describe your sound in 3 words
Adventurous, eclectic and lively.
- What is the story behind your name?
The name came straight from science. I was reading an article about a new exoplanet discovered by measuring the diminishing brightness of its star when the planet passes, or ‘transits’, in front of it. I’m personally very intrigued by astronomy and the discovery of other worlds. We thought it had a nice ring to it and didn’t feel like it fell into any genre which resonated with us because our tastes are so vast.
- You are set to release your second album this summer. Many bands often met with the curse of the difficult second album. What was your experience?
Rather than trying to compare ourselves to what we did on the first album, we tried to approach this one with fresh ears, almost as if it’s our first. I think the most important thing is we gained a lot of confidence through touring over the last two years so our chemistry has been locked in more than ever. We all brought ideas to the table and gave each a fair shot. We even did a songwriting challenge where each of us wrote either a riff, progression, melody or lyrics every day for two weeks just to get the juices flowing. That all resulted in a massive collection of songs that we narrowed down to the best of the best. Next, we recorded the entire record ourselves in our rehearsal space, layers and all. Even percussion. It helped to be able to experiment at our own pace, rather than on studio time. Once we felt 100% confident in the arrangements, we went into the studio and knocked everything out in two long weekend sessions. It was the most prepared we’ve ever been.
- Your sound is heavy but you also write great riffs. What’s more important? The song, or heaviness. Tell us a few things about your creative process
No matter how heavy a song is, there’s always a hook that makes it memorable. In my opinion, a song can be good no matter the genre. I get as much joy out of Slayer’s “Angel of Death” as I do Steely Dan’s “Aja”. Obviously, these are two extremely different bands, but these are both extremely well written songs. On this record, we tried to be conscious of the inherent song underneath all of the heavy and odd elements. We kept in mind that if a song can’t be played stripped down into an acoustic environment, it may not be as strong as we originally thought. Once the basic song is there, then we’re able to paint on top of it.
- You have performed in numerous cities. What would you describe the best moment until now? And what would be your dream performance venue?
Seattle is hands down the best city we have ever played. I remember being nervous before the show because the local bands on the bill were so popular and it was clear that the crowd was there for them. Especially Ten Miles Wide (if you haven’t listened to them, do it.). Nobody had ever heard of us. But as we played, the room filled up more and more. I can confidently pinpoint the exact moment I felt the crowd’s acceptance to when we began to play an excerpt from King Crimson’s “Red”. Without any prior discussion, the sound engineer took it upon himself to fade all lights in the venue to red. It was so profound because it instantly made us feel like everyone there understood us. As we played through the rest of the set, the entire audience was on their feet dancing with us. We signed records after the show, countless people bought us drinks, and the bass player in Ten Miles Wide wore our shirt on stage and continually shouted us out. Being so far from home, it felt magical to be accepted by that town so quickly.
- What is your favorite album of the past year?
I have to go with Psychedelic Porn Crumpet’s “And Now For The Whatchamacallit”. I think these guys are the best rock band around today.
- Which artists have been most influential for you, as a band and as individuals?
Instead of just listing bands, I’ll give you a bit of history because there are far too many bands to call out. My family lived upstairs from my Aunt and older cousins who regularly exposed me and my brother (the drummer) to all kinds of music. What originally made a big impression was a mix of metal, grunge, and pop. Everything from Motley Crue to White Zombie, Megadeth, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jane’s Addiction and even Michael Jackson. We started to collect full discographies on cassette with our allowance. For example, Mike would buy “Kill ‘Em All” and “…And Justice For All”, and I’d buy “Ride The Lightning” and “Master of Puppets” to try and complete the Metallica catalogue. It’s one of my favorite memories. As we got older, Mike got into progressive rock and I explored all facets of metal. And then we’d share. He’d show me Genesis and Yes, I’d show him Slayer and Overkill. It went like that for TONS of bands. When we met Danny, he also shared our love for prog and metal, but brought a lot of funk and punk to the table. Something awesome about Danny is that he can play almost any bass riff from RHCP, The Mars Volta, or Incubus (just to name a small few). We’ll jam at rehearsal and he’ll just whip out these bass lines that we’ll jam on for hours. Recently, we’ve collectively taken a liking to a wide range of bands including King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard, Khruangbin, Hot Snakes, Failure, Vulfpek and White Denim. All of these sounds find their way into our music and that’s what results in what we do.
- If you could change anything about the music industry, what would it be?
The first thing that comes to mind is how bands are compensated for their music being streamed digitally. Especially for bands at our level, getting our music onto these platforms is essential in reaching a larger audience; however, there is little to no financial reward from the streams you accumulate. While a superfan may buy vinyl or a tee shirt, most listeners are just discovering you and will likely only stream your music. With millions of people paying monthly for premium accounts on these platforms, I think the model needs to shift to bands getting more of a percentage of that revenue. In addition, I think something needs to be done about the ticket resale industry. Concerts have gotten insanely expensive no matter the genre, especially for bands that have been around for some time. It is unfair that venues make deals with resellers where they sell X number of tickets at face value only for resellers to turn around and sell those tickets at a premium, likely twice the cost. It discourages a fan who may not have deep pockets from seeing their favorite band. It feels classist. Similarly, I’ve also noticed presales only being accessible to specific credit card holders. I’m not sure of the best way to fix this, but it would be nice to see bands selling tickets exclusively through their own websites to try and alleviate the issue.
- One last thing we should know about you?
We have no intention of slowing down. We plan to write, record and release more music as quickly as we can. Especially with live shows being in a questionable state for the time being, we hope our music can be an outlet for people. Once it’s possible, we plan to perform this music for as many people as possible and look forward to those days!
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