A fresh album release from Collide brings out a dark edge alternative rock cinematic universe that has a way of swelling and swimming around you as you soak it in.
Notes From the Universe is absolutely massive, and each song has a way of standing on its own two legs but the entire album as a whole feels like a concept record that once it's ended, gives you the same feeling you get when you watch an epic film and I've just walked back out of the theater to the outside world.
This record has all kinds of synth pads and electronic backing that gives it that theatrical undertone but also captures heaviness in a late 90s underground alternative rock type of way.
It's awesome to hear beautifully performed and almost haunting vocals laid on top such a massive and vast soundscape. It all makes perfect sense, and the textures blend together seamlessly.
One of the coolest things about this album is that you really don't know what to expect next from track to track and having that understanding of the unexpected is something that really helps the album stay as alluring as it does.
This record has layers to it and it's really actually quite fun to peel back those layers and see what lies beneath everything and there is something there.
The album as a whole has some great guitar work that's used as a form of expansion and gives the songs an even bigger and more vast feeling and tonality which really works for the vibe of the entire thing.
The other thing is that this record is super fun because they do tell stories and they do it in such a sort of dramatic and Theatrical sense that you can see some of them being a part of a scene of a play for example.
A lot of this album takes you to different places and different worlds and going on this musical Journey is really enticing and when you come out of it you kind of have to get your footing again and shake it off.
This is an amazing form of escapism and I love albums that do things like that for you because you don't come across them all that often but Collide pulls this off without a hitch.
With such an awesome album release we wanted to have a sit down with the band to find out where this actually came from and what might be coming next for them.
Here's what went down.
Buzz Slayers: How did this all start for you as a band?
kaRIN: When I was younger I had a lot of friends who played guitar and we would all hang out and sing, I found it was such a great escape that I got addicted and I have been singing ever since.
Buzz Slayers: What kind of things really inspire songs for you?
kaRIN: Typically I love to listen to a song for the very first time and just let whatever flows out. Then it will take awhile to take shape and to finally get somewhere that I like where it is going. I wish it was easy—it is easy to sing to anything—but to get something that I love is hard. I get bored very easily and can write 10 or more different songs until I am even ready to share something with Statik.
Statik: For me, a lot of the time song inspiration will come from an interesting sound sample. For the most part we’ll start songs with a sequence and work on it on Pro Tools…on Notes From the Universe we started a lot of the songs on guitar though, which was a little different for us, especially knowing our history.
Buzz Slayers: This record has some great styles combinations on it! Can you give us some of your biggest influences musically?
kaRIN: I love smooth vocals that also have an edge and the timelessness of good lyrics. I would say that my biggest influences come from my most formative time—so David Bowie, Kate Bush, & Pink Floyd are some of my favorites.
Statik: I’ve always loved big productions styles, so maybe I’ve been more influenced from producers…like Trevor Horn stuff in the 80’s and 90’s, and lots of Queen stuff, and some of the older Nine Inch Nails, and Kate Bush. It’s a pretty wide range I guess.
Buzz Slayers: What are you doing when you're NOT working on music?
kaRIN: I am addicted to creating and have run my own small jewelry company for forever, KBD Studio. I work with a lot of stores, galleries and boutiques and we hand make everything. I also love photography and I used to paint—so basically anything that is creative. My biggest issue is that I just do not have enough time to do all the things that I would like to do. Other than that—I love to hike with my dogs, or go biking.
Statik: I love to get outdoors on my bike, either mountain biking or on the road. It’s a good way for me to stay sane. Other than that I keep busy doing production and remixing for quite a few other bands and musicians.
Buzz Slayers: Who's in your headphones right now?
kaRIN: We are working on a new surprise song—so I am typically listening to what we are working on.
Statik: I’ll just listen to random songs form my music library….nothing really new currently…I have tried, but not much new has really caught my ear.
Buzz Slayers: Are you doing any live performances right now?
kaRIN: No, we have always been more of a studio band than a live band. We did do some live shows several years ago—but for me music is all about the creation and making of something new. We are both very difficult to please, so that and running my own business takes up all my time.
Buzz Slayers: Did you record yourself or hit a big studio for this?
kaRIN: We take care of every detail of our own music with the exception of mastering and everything is done in our own studio.
Statik: Making an album is a pretty long process for us, so it’s not like going in and just recording a few takes. It’s really a process, and we’re all about the little details, so being able to take the time to do everything ourselves is important.
Buzz Slayers: What can your fans expect from you in the near future?
kaRIN: Too soon to tell—stay tuned.
Statik: We have a couple of new videos we hope to put out in the next month!
Buzz Slayers: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?
Statik: Thanks for letting us entertain you!