Friday, January 25, 2013

Ichabod Interview

1. Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?
Writing, playing shows, rehearsing, drinking, smoking. Band stuff like that.
Dave-We’re all super busy with both band activities and personal things..I’m finishing graduate school and expecting my 2nd child this month! The writing is coming along swimmingly with the new material….

2. How would you describe the musical sound of the new album and how it differs from previous releases?
Dave- Well, not to overstate the obvious, but John’s vocals are much different than Ken’s were. Just as diverse, but different ranges and pitches. Also, adding Jay on guitar really beefs up and thickens our riffing. We’re starting to dabble more in harmonies and complementary parts too. Otherwise, Dreamscapes is just a natural progression if you follow our whole trajectory.

3. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?
Witches, drugs, the new world order, technology, women, cowboys and guns.

4. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the bands name?
Dave-Ichabod translates to “Inglorious”…I mean it to infer that we’re not in the music biz to gain “glory,” or to become trendy. If we become at all fashionable, it’ll be due to our musical integrity, artistic vision, and luck. But that is definitely not what any of us set out to achieve….our “glory” comes from the pure creation of art for art’s sake; hopefully people see the truth and honor in that and don’t take it to mean we’re a bunch of pretentious blowhards. The original inspiration for the name was the protagonist from Irving’s “Legend of Sleepy Hollow”; I’m a high school English teacher, so I’m drawn to the literary references!

5. What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and how woulf you describe your stage performance?
I think our last gig at the Middle East Upstairs [Boston, MA.] was our best live gig to date with the new lineup...but I have a blast at every show so I'm probably not the best person to be asking.
Dave-Wow…I’m not sure..we’ve played a lot of great gigs in our time together. With this lineup, my favorite gig so far was with Karma to Burn in Boston. Stage performances tend toward the energetic…we all grew up in hardcore and metal bands, so those roots come out inevitably. But things can get very cerebral at times too…we’ll space you out and entrance you before we go for the knockout!!!

6. Do you have any touring plans for the future?
I want to play in Europe someday, especially England. I've got some acquaintances over there I'd like to finally meet face to face.
Dave-Europe would be a dream come true…We’re talking about doing more down in the deep South too…Nothing planned yet for West Coast, but it’s on our radar if the right opportunity arises. In the meantime, we’ll keep gigging as far around the East Coast as time and situation allows.

7. Currently you are signed to Rootsucker Records, how did you get in contact with this label  and how would you describe the support they have given you so far?
Dave-Our dear friend Dave Tornstrom had just finished up his degree in Entertainment Law and decided to start the label as a Petri dish, or guinea pig, to begin feeling out the industry. It’s grown from there. There are 2 other artists, Rob Byrd (ambient, Eno-esque guitar) and Eddy Dyer (psych/folk) besides Ichabod on the label now. Dave hopes to continue building the label while simultaneously using it as a springboard to help his bands move onto bigger things. You couldn’t meet a fairer, more honest guy. He’s actually played keys/samples on many of our tracks too.

8. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of sludge, stoner and doom metal?
It's been overwhelmingly positive from my perspective from most of the people who've talked about us after hearing the album.
Dave-We’ve always had our base in the sludge/stoner/doom scene, although we don’t necessarily fit any of those genres perfectly neatly. We actually get a lot more press from other parts of the world than we do right here in Boston! The biggest music paper in town has never approached us about doing anything about us, and we’ll never chase them or solicit them to do so…weird to see how they pander to the trends that come and go but ignore a band who’s been around for over a decade, chugging away!

9. What is going on with the other musical projects these days?
I've got a side band that I've been with for the last 5 years....just a weekly get together and the occasional gig, nothing serious. We've got a batch of new songs we've been putting together for the last 6-8 months that we're finally ready to play for people so within the next month or 2 we'll be putting something out. We were called Faces of Mars but that's most likely going to change before the new material is available.
Dave-I barely have time right now to play in one band! I’d like to eventually do a solo record though; Phil plays drums in another band, a kind of post punk outfit called Audrey Can’t Die. He brings a new energy to their material via his powerhouse pounding! Greg played in a death metal band called Blessed Offal until recently.

10. What direction do you see the music heading into on future releases?
More riffs, more depth, deeper into the proverbial rabbit hole.
Dave-I agree with John here…we’ve got a prog-ish, concept album coming out soon called “Merrimack”..John and Jay are laying down their tracks over the next few months, otherwise my guitar, bass, and drums are finished already. It’s a very different record than Dreamscapes due to the continuity between tracks. It’s really meant to be listened to as a whole, although you can break it down into tracks. Then we’ll begin working on the sequel to Dreamscapes, which we’ve got a majority of tracks written for as we speak.

11. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
I listen to classic rock, doom, and death metal on a daily basis. It's all in there somewhere. I've been listening to a lot of Graveyard, Alice Cooper, and Opeth lately
Dave-I’m digging stuff like Black Angels, It’s Not Night It’s Space, Subarachnoid Space, Conan, Wooden Shjips, and a bunch of classic Ambient stuff (Eno, Fripp, Budd, etc.) Also digging some new death metal like Fenrismaw, and the latest Cough stuff as far as sludge goes.
12. How would you describe your views onn Occultism?
Everyone has to believe in something, even nothing is something. It's all just a way to try and emit and control a perception of reality.
Dave-We’ve always incorporated a diversity of esoteric/occult concepts and ideas into our music. We do so symbolically, lyrically, and structurally. For example, on Dreamscapes the song 108; it’s a very sacred number to a variety of spiritual paths. We wrote the song lyrically about ego loss through transcendental experience, AND it was structured at 108 BPM, pace wise. We do a lot of that type of thing…try to make music our ritual. We’ve always wanted to play gigs at many of the world’s sacred spots, ala Pink Floyd live at Pompeii. We never cross over into proselytization or preachiness however…there are too many individual religious beliefs within the band to adhere to one philosophical approach at large. The spiritualism present in Ichabod therefore is more universalist in presentation.

13. Outside of music what are some of your interests?

I'm a huge MMA fan and I workout 5-6 days a week. Being a larger dude I've been tying to get healthier as I've gotten into my mid 30's. I'm in better shape now than in my 20's by miles. Other than that I watch a lot of youtube and hang around at home with my family.
Dave-I’m a writer, and a teacher. I also am a dad, and husband to the coolest chick on earth. We’ve also got two amazing German Shepherds that are as much a part of the family as you can imagine.
14. Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
Dave-Thank you guys so much for your interest in the band! We love doing what we do, and will keep it up as long as we can. We feel we have so much more to offer yet… I second John’s praise of both Earsplit PR and Dave Brennar, and Scott from 313…they’re helping to spread the word in ways we could never manage on our own.
I wanna thank all the blogs and websites who've supported us with this new record. Props to EarSplit PR too for all great work they've done and to Glenn Smith at Amp v Ohms Studios for doing such a killer job recording this album.

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