Sunday, June 7, 2015

Jointstereo Interview

1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

Arthur: Jointstereo was born November 9, 2008 (the day of the first full lineup rehearsal) in Krasnodar (Russia’s southwest). Over the next two years, we recorded several trial demos and finally released the Lineout studio single in 2011. Jonas Kjellgren (a Swedish producer and co-founder of Scar Symmetry) was positively impressed by the release and offered to mix and master our debut full-length album. Refract The Fears (the debut LP) was released April 13, 2012 and gained positive acclaim from public, although did not reach wide audience. Several months later, I temporarily left the band due to creative and managerial disagreements. After my return in 2013, several singles were recorded, and we started working on the second album tentatively titled Break The Circles. In the heat of the record session, the project became virtually disbanded and ended up being a studio duo. Me and Yuri decided to finish the recorded material and release it as Circles. EP.

2.Recently you have released a new ep, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ form the stuff you have released in the past?

Arthur: Initially, the release was intended to be a full-length sequel of the Refract The Fears debut album. However, as most band members had left the project during the record session, we finished the material and released it as an EP. The result is a kind of atmospheric rock with a touch of progressive flavor that now drifts towards post metal while giving up on doom death features typical of our debut album. Conceptually, record sessions were all about achieving live and natural sound; hence the rock legends of the past used as a go-by during mastering and the numerous analogue devices in the record path. The release therefore can be viewed as an eclectic and post-modernistic one (in a good sense of this word).

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?

Arthur: Similar to the debut full-length album, lyrics mostly deal with the dark states of mind; however, new concepts are widely based on religious and philosophical views and scientific theories thus going way beyond personal feelings and self-reflections.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Jointstereo'?

Arthur: As you probably know, Joint Stereo is a term in audio engineering. Roughly, it’s a trick used to reduce the size of audio file, and this encoding technique is based on the summation of left and right channels and their subtraction at the same time.
When I was something like 17, I was fond of dualism in philosophy and just started to be interested in audio engineering. The idea of two opposites becoming something integral but preserving the differences really impressed me. To me, it looked like something universal, you know, and I thought it would be a great name for the band. Later, the space character has disappeared and a lot of other meanings appeared. Loud and quiet, aggressive and calm, hard and soft, etc.

Yuri: And after we became a duo, this name suits us even better. Our music is a sum of both of us, but it isn’t flat because of our differences.

5.Currently there are only 2 members in the band, are you planning on expanding the line up in the future or do you chose to remain a duo?

Arthur: We write the new songs as a duo, and we feel quite comfortable. However, we record songs with help of session musicians, and when we will return to the live stage, we will need a live band. Who will it be, and will they become the members of Jointstereo, only time will tell.

6.The ep was released on Another Side Recordings, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?

Arthur: Another Side Records is a sublabel of the Ukrainian heavy metal label Metal Scrap Records. Another Side Records is focused on more atmospheric and progressive music. They are great people and professionals, and they are really passionate about their work.

7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of death,doom and post metal?

Arthur: Circles. EP is our first official worldwide release, so we haven’t had time to understand. As I said, our debut album gained positive acclaim from the fans of such genres, but the international audience wasn’t wide enough.

8.Are any of the band members also involved with any other musical projects?

Arthur: No, but we have many ideas beyond Jointstereo and some of them are even beyond rock and metal music. If it develops into something, most likely we will work on it together.

Yuri: Right, we have an excellent rapport, and we perfectly complement each other’s ideas.

Arthur: I had a collaboration with another local metal band Aura One when temporarily left Jointstereo. We even recorded a nice single ‘Follow The Silence’, but soon I left Aura One and came back to JS.

9.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

Arthur: Within a year I guess. We have just begun working on the new songs, and the concept isn’t clear enough yet. I believe our music will evolve in the same direction, and there will be more progressive and atmospheric features and less death metal, etc. But who knows. It’s all about feelings.

10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

Arthur: When I was a kid, my parents were fond of classical symphonic music, jazz and rock, especially art and progressive. From the cradle I was listening to Mozart, Beethoven, Vivaldi, Buxtehude, Ravel, Gershwin, Pink Floyd, ELP, The Doors, Yes, Gentle Giant, Jethro Tull, Mike Oldfield, Black Sabbath and so on. Over the years, I became a fan of almost all kinds of interesting, intelligent, atmospheric and emotional music. I have very broad tastes in music. Of course, at different times I prefer different genres. Jointstereo was founded when we were the huge fans of Katatonia, Tool, Anathema, Opeth, October Tide, Tiamat and some other rock and metal bands. You can hear the influence of such music in our debut album. I even made a nod towards some of my favorites in my lyrics. Attentive listener will find these references. Nowadays, I mostly listen to atmospheric and progressive rock, acoustic rock, chamber rock (baroque pop), trip-hop, retrowave electronic music, etc., and the heaviest part of my basic playlist is post-metal, I guess. Oh, I really love the latest Katatonia live release ’Sanctitude’ and 2015 ‘Hvel’ LP by Árstíðir. The latest Callisto album is also amazing to me. Of course, sometimes I listen to doom death, progressive and math metal, but only in the very special mood. Actually, I can talk about my favorites for a really long time, so I’d better stop right now.

Yuri: Since childhood, I was an almost omnivorous music listener. My cassette mixtapes were a dish consisting of Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Therion, Metallica, Mummy Troll, Darkseed, Tiamat, Nirvana, and it was seasoned with B.B. King and Gary Moore. Later, my tastes have become sharper. Now my playlist usually includes Katatonia, Tool, Gojira, A Swarm Of The Sun, sometimes the best of the rising math metal stars like Tesseract and Architects. I think you can find an influence of the unique combinations of my favorites in each of my works. Sometimes I do notice that when analyzing our recordings.

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

Arthur: In short, I’m a loving husband, a Master of Fine Arts, an IT enthusiast, a video game fan and a fan of cooking. I’m also really interested in religions, philosophy and natural science. And I’m a huge fan of beards, yeah.

Yuri: First of all, my non musical interests are my family and my friends. I always try to find a way to spend more time with them. I also love nature in all its aspects, I like to travel, I’m fond of fine arts. Besides that, I love discussions, ‘cause they provide an opportunity to understand people and to learn a lot. In general, the pursuit of information is one of my main interests.

12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Arthur: Thank you guys. This is our first international interview, so it’s a great honor for us. And addressing the audience, we hope our music will bring you lots of pleasant moments. From Russia with great love to each and every one of you. Goodbye.

Yuri: I subscribe to what was said by Arthur. Thanks for the interview. Bye.

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