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Interview with... The Silent Era

London Alt/Rock 4 piece The Silent Era have recently released their new single 'Scorpio'

Scorpio's heavy groove combined with grungy accents, powerful vocals and a rather psychedelic instrumental bridge makes it the perfect track to finish the live sets.!

We sat down with the band for a chat about the release.

Introduce yourself and tell us what you do in the band?

Nicolas Zappa: I’m Nicolas, you’ll see me on bass most of the time but I also do other things, like composing, mixing, experimenting. I’m a nerd.

Oh and I’m hearing that Bri, the greatest vocalist of all time will pop by later, how about that?

Tell us a little about your band, how you got together and the story behind the name if there is one.

NZ: So, Chris, our guitar player and I have been playing together since 2018, tried a couple of projects with other people, different bands, which eventually led to this one with the addition of Bri, our singer in the summer of 2021 and finally Jo came to the rescue in March 2023 on drums after our original drummer left. And the name, well you probably know how hard it is to find one you won’t regret after one release. I came up with that one late 2021, as I’m a big fan of the silent era of film, especially German expressionists. So it refers directly to it. I thought it was also quite funny to name a band The Silent Era whilst the era we live in is the exact opposite of being silent, where everyone has to have an opinion on everything and express it in the loudest possible way at all times, it’s exhausting.

Tell us a bit about your latest single, what’s the story behind the song?

NZ: It started with a bass riff I had - the one in the bridge - and I was stuck, didn’t know where to go with it, so I handed it over to Chris who made the whole instrumental demo around it, with the structure and all. And then when Bri joined us, it was one of the first songs she wrote the vocal parts to and then, ‘Scorpio’ was born. The lyrics she wrote puts the listener in the dangerous position of someone weirdly obsessed by a toxic relationship with something or someone and what the outcome of that can be. Sounds familiar?

The recording of it was done last summer, we came down to Brighton to track guitars and drums at Small Pond Studios, then more guitars (never enough), vocals, bass and synth were recorded at home in London, as well as the mixing.

What is your writing process like? Do you start with lyrics and then come up with a melody or is it the other way round?

NZ: We don’t have rules per say, as in anyone can come up with anything but so far, what happens is usually me or Chris demoing instrumental demos at home, Bri writes the vocals and we practise the song in the room, each of us coming up with their own arrangements. We have a good chemistry so it all goes pretty smoothly.

Bri Macanas: For this one I’d previously written the lyrics with no melody, like a poem.. And then this demo came along and had the kind of attitude I wanted to fit with the theme, so I had a bit of a play around and it fit together quite nicely I reckon.

What bands were you listening to when you were writing this release? Do you think it had an effect on the end sound?

NZ: I can’t speak for the others but on my end, the bass line has been fueled by Tool except that I’m definitely not as good as Justin Chancellor. As for the mixing and the overall sound of it, my references were Deftones, mostly ‘White Pony’ and yes, Tool. But also ~45 years of listening to different kinds of music.

BM: You’re great Nic! For me, the melody in the verse is quite Garbage influenced, with a little soul. Then the choruses have my usual up an octave (or so) yelp, which is a trope I think a lot of rock singers stick to. So no one specifically.

What can you tell us about the release that the song has come from?

NZ: So, we have the single ‘Scorpio’ that we mentioned above and a B-side, which is a cover of Mazzy Star ‘Into Dust’, which was a very interesting exercise for us to do. You may feel our industrial influences in it, more than on ‘Scorpio’ or ‘Heavy Cure’, with the pads, synths and noises.

What would people be surprised to know about you?

NZ: About the band, each of us comes from a different part of the world, which has always been the case even in previous iterations/projects since 2018. About me, I have found a new love for Black Metal recently, wish my bandmates good luck.

Do you have any shows coming up that we should get ourselves along to?

NZ: Yes, on the 24th June at the Fiddler’s Elbow, in Camden, London. You should come along indeed!

Thanks for chatting to us guys, it's been a pleasure, we will for sure be checking you out at a show in the future!

Find The Silent Era online:

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