What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
Dead Heart Bloom was formed by songwriter, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Boris Skalsky and guitarist Paul Wood following the dissolution of their previous band, the Washington, DC-based Phaser. Having quickly captured the attention of the indie press and radio, Phaser honed their live act playing with such artists as Interpol, Super Furry Animals, BRMC and Spiritualized. As touring members of Jimmy Chamberlin’s post Smashing Pumpkins project Skysaw, Boris and Paul further developed their live sound on stage, before solidifying the Dead Heart Bloom lineup with the addition of drummer Jason Molina. In 2015 and 2016, Dead Heart Bloom released material mixed by Anthony Molina of Mercury Rev. In 2018, the band returned with new music.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
Latest EP from Dead Heart Bloom combining 3 brand new tracks with previous single “Lost In A Dream”. A sonic late night exploration among supercharged guitars, electronic psychedelics and mercifully sympathetic pianos.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
Our musical influences are pretty wide-ranging, from ‘80s & ‘90s Creation and 4AD to modern electronic from Kraftwerk to Aphex Twin to Jon Hopkins and of course classic 60s and 70s bands. Like most in our genre we also draw from Radiohead and 90s shoegaze. In a previous incarnation of our band we opened for Spiritualized, which was a thrill.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
We try to take our influences and put our stamp on it, specifically with distinct melody and chord structure. We definitely aim to write classic song structures and then spin them with loads of effects or an unexpected change – a middle 8 that maybe seems out of place but somehow works in context of the track. A mix of the Beatles and the Bends.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
It’s hard to narrow it down, obviously. But for albums: anything from the Beatles; Cocteau Twins “Pink Opaque” and David Bowie “Low”.
Movies: Godfather I or II, Donnie Darko and Buffalo 66.
Books: Blood Meridian; anything by Tom Wolfe and Dharma Bums.
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
There’s nothing like the incredible energy and vibe of a live performance. But lately we’ve been going deep into the studio to work on projects, not just Dead Heart Bloom but others like our ambient electronic band Tiger Mountain. It’s just as rewarding to come out of the studio after hours of work with something inspiring and there’s an endless amount of avenues to explore with today’s technologies. That said, we can’t wait to take the results from the studio on the road.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
There was one time early in our careers when we had the opportunity to open for U2. And we missed the call! They ended up opening the show with a dj spinning Beatles records, we were later told.
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
I think the last track, Forever, on the new EP is different for us in that we stripped it down and didn’t layer the track with instrumentation. It’s a piano, moog, and a voice. That sort of stripped down song is different for us and took a lot of discipline.
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
We’re as excited as we’ve we ever been to keep writing and creating music. There’ so much opportunity today that it really feels like a new revolution in how and where music can be created. In addition to Dead Heart Bloom we have an electronic project called Tiger Mountain and recently launched our own digital label, Ephemeral Arts, to release music by artists we really like in addition to our own releases. So plenty of outlets to be creative and current.
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
Photo credits: Michelle Repiso
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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