Today we speak to Brock from Double Experience.
Let’s start with this. What’s the history of your band?
Ian and I have been writing music and playing onstage together since 2011. That was under a band called “Colfax”. It was a deliberate choice to use that band as a gigantic growth period where we would see what does or doesn’t work without fear of critical mistakes. Once we fully explored our definition of being what being a DIY band meant, Ian and I started Double Experience in 2014.
What’s your musical history? (Trained or Amateur)?
Ian and I were exposed to as much music as the average student is. Our teacher was very much dealing in medical music; the kind that tastes horrible to digest but is incredibly healthy for you. Beyond school, my guitar education consisted of me bringing my guitar teacher burned CD’s of my favorite bands and watching him learn everything by ear. That pretty much ended when YouTube came to be.
So what can you tell us about your latest album? (Inspiration. Sound. Style.)
We wanted to establish a nerdy, heavy rock sound. AC/DC are heavy in ways Queens of the Stone Age are not, and vice versa. If you ask someone to imagine a country song or a punk song, the mental images of these songs will not drastically differ from person to person. The same cannot be said of a rock song.
The lyrics, then, were all of nerdy origins and inspirations. Some are obvious, like video games and the periodic table of elements, and others were subtle, evoking high fantasy and cult films.
How did you go about making it?
Every writing and recording session previous to “Unsaved Progress” lasted a week total for
each activity. This time, we dedicated a month to write and about 10 days to record. We returned to Chapel Hill, NC and Warrior Sound Studio with Al Jacob while the drums were recorded remotely in the U.K.
Anything you’ve learnt as you’ve gone along? Or have you simply tried a bit of everything to see how it works?
Al taught our band the most by his active decision to avoid “producing” our music. After recording with him multiple times, Al has given Ian and I enough guidance to make informed decisions by ourselves, but not by way of demanding changes. He just has that skilled ear for sound quality and just a no-bullshit philosophy in music production.
What sort of technology and instruments do you work with?
We track through Pro Tools. Guitars were all tracked digitally through a Kemper instead of real amp equivalents, because the Kemper passed the blind test with flying colors. Bass was probably recorded with a blend of analog and digital. I used four different guitars and three different basses.
Anything you’re keen to use on your next album?
There’s bound to be something new and crazy to use by the time we go back into the studio. Maybe more guitar effects. I had a signature octave fuzz built after the album I’d like to try out in studio. It’s all contained in an original Game Boy.
Any future plans for your solo work, or do you have other projects on the horizon?
Ian and I were performing in a Police tribute band last year. We might revisit that or try another band entirely. Having to look that close to another artist definitely switched a light on in terms of the song-writing process as a whole.
Any plans for upcoming live shows?
The plan is more international tours this year but we’re quickly realizing how that is a process of our band being available at the right time when the right offer is on the table with the right amount of notice. For 2017, we’re going to be focusing on road-testing new songs as opposed to figuring out the kinks immediately before studio time.
Let’s have a few general questions now. What do you see as a musicians role in society?
First and foremost, entertain. If you aren’t explicitly empowering people to rally against oppressive forces, then you should be able to make people forget those forces entirely for the duration of your song or your show and just allow them to feel free and feel happy.
How’s the scene different in your country to what we’re familiar with?
Every band in Canada that is actively pursuing music beyond their local pub has made a commitment for long drives in dangerous weather for a relatively small marketplace. My personal opinion is that the majority of bands get seduced into following whatever is popular once they see first-hand how the odds are stacked against them from being able to break out of their local scenes into national and international scenes.
Anything unique to your country?
Many of us swear by our national coffee chain and of course, there’s the snow. For better or worse, Canadians are basically polite, unarmed Americans.
Where do you stand on music videos?
Behind the camera. Literally. 99% of our music videos were created by our band. It’s part of our DIY ethic and our charm.
Do you see their value in today’s world?
I do, but considering we are musicians by trade, there’s something wholly “wrong” about spending more money on a video than on your entire album. Until video costs go down, we’ll endeavor to do our own videos.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Email etiquette. It’s foolish to think every opportunity is going to work, but by the time a recipient is finished reading an email, a quick “No thanks” or “I’ll check” is all takes to keep this entire industry chugging along. Show business is the only business where people actually believe they have the right to ignore basic business acumen like punctuality, politeness and clear statements.
Any advice for new bands?
If you expect anything out of music, you expect too much. If you play music because you love it, then the rest is easy.
Let’s have some generic questions. Star Wars or Star Trek?
Sci-Fi or Fantasy?
Texas Chainsaw Massacre is the end-all-be-all movie for me. I watched The Evil Dead with Ian once to introduce him to my horror fixation and he just about had a conniption.
Books or Comics?
Trump or Putin?
Je ne parle pas anglais. (Yini umzalwane? -Ed)
Anything you’d like to tell our readers?
The last time a nerdy rock trio came from Canada, the world received Rush. We haven’t exactly beat them at their own game, but if you check out Double Experience’s music I’m sure you’ll agree that Canada is currently batting 2/2.