Climate Control's Has Everything Under Control

A storm is coming. After years of hard work, commitment and respect for an industry, which doesn't always reciprocate, Johannesburg-based post-hardcore/rock group Climate Control is ready to justify the hype and assert their place at the forefront of the South African alternative music scene, with the release of their highly anticipated debut album, Preludes. The entire band got together to discuss their latest album and upcoming plans.

1. Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Climate Control, and how long the band has been together.

Nic: I'm the guitarist and vocalist, and I handle the lyrical side of things. We've been together as a band for around 5 years now.
Luca: I play the six-string box.
Jacques: I play the drums and handle live samples.
Wes: I'm the bassist and I also do harsh vocals, like swearing and stuff.

2. Can I get a backstory on the band/ band biography?

Wes: Climate Control started properly in 2008. Nic, Luca, and Jacques are the founding members of Climate Control, and I joined the band in 2010 as the bassist and scream vocalist. Our sound has evolved quite a bit over the years but I think we've kept our core sound and feel for the music we write. We've filmed a music video for our song "A Bouquet of Hate, An Ocean of Questions", and we released our debut album 'Preludes' in May this year.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Wes: We're based in Johannesburg, South Africa. The metal and alternative scene is growing faster and there have been more and more huge International acts coming over. Local bands we'd like to recommend are Freedom For Your Life, Bombs & Issues, and Poverty of Ideals. Rad music and rad people.

4. How did you guys come up with your band name?

Wes: Our name is based on a person's emotional climate, and our goal is for people to relate to our music on a very personal level. In that way, we hope our songs can be seen as emotive tools.

5. What bands have influenced your band and its sound?

Luca: We gain influence from a big range of genres, from lighter and heavier music, and we're all influenced by different music or bands at times, but I think our biggest influences would be Underoath or Deftones.

6. Are you guys signed to a label or unsigned? Which way do you prefer your band to be? Do you hope to eventually get signed?

Luca: We are an unsigned band. I think it's getting more apparent that being independent is not a bad thing and that a band can be successful without a label, but I think being signed to a label would be great.

7. What lyrical theme do you guys use in your music? What message do you want to send?

Nic: I don't particularly have a specific message I try to get across in my lyrics. I base them on personal experiences and observations; anything that moves me in some way. So I suppose the main thing I'd hope to achieve with my lyrics is to evoke emotions and thoughts in people, and for people to relate to them in some way.

8. What would you say is your favorite song off this album and why?

Luca: My favorite song off the album is "Spiralling..." because of the large amount of energy the song gives off. It's also very fun to play.
Nic: For me it's either "Clear Perception" or "Praeludium".
Wes: Definitely "Praeludium" and "The Road".
Jacques: "Praeludium".

9. Who produced Preludes and what was it like working with them?

Jacques: Clinton Watts from Watts Productions. Working with Clint was, to say the least, a pleasure. We recorded a few demo tracks with Clint prior to our debut album 'Preludes' and the experience has been nothing but positive. His attitude towards the music scene and the production of music is on a very professional level. After our demo tracks, we started with 'Preludes' and the experience continued from there. I would be lying if I said he was not a big influence for us; he strives for absolute perfection and it definitely reflects in the work he does. As a band we have learnt a lot from Clint and hopefully we can do so further with more albums in the future.

10. Is there any story or concept behind the Preludes title?

Nic: The album name and artwork are loosely based on the poem of the same name by T.S. Eliot. The imagery described in the poem really inspired me and I thought it fit well with the album as a whole. Our own meaning behind the title is that all of the songs are lyrically about some sort of prelude to an end.

11. Who did the cover art for Preludes and how much input did you have on it?

Wes: Ivana Raguž designed our album art. We all had our fair share of input and design ideas, and it turned out to be great and exactly what we were going for.

12. Select two songs from Preludes and tell me what inspired the lyrics.

Nic: I normally don't like talking about the meaning of our songs in too much detail, as I'd prefer people to develop their own meanings and connections with them. As broad concepts, "Clear Perception" is about someone who formed a big part of my foundation in terms of friendship and support, who just became a different person and faded away. So that song is about someone close alienating you and the gap they leave behind in a sense. "Praeludium" is about the end of the world, and this kind of grim acceptance that everyone experiences at the same time when they realise it really is the end.

13. What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?

Jacques: It might sound like a cliché, but I feel we have a unique sound. We draw a lot of influence from other artists and the like, but I personally believe that we offer something that is not reproduced or a carbon copy of any other artist/band. We had very humble beginnings; we started out from scratch and we've been working hard ever since. All four of us are very dedicated to the band and with everything we do we strive to do it with passion and professionalism. We love what we do and our love for the music transitions into our performance.

14. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Jacques: Our music is available now across the internet. Our album can be purchased at any of our live gigs, and furthermore we also sell band apparel and other merchandise. If you wish to buy our album digitally you can do so through iTunes: or Amazon: One of the singles from our debut album 'Preludes' can be streamed here:

15. What can the fans expect to see from you in the future?

Luca: We are hopefully going to be touring South Africa soon, and hopefully tour internationally one day. Fans can expect a new music video and more music in the future for sure!

16. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Jacques: If you’re a first time listener the only thing I’d want you to remember is the experience you felt. Every person is different and every listener will experience something only they will feel and I would be content if listening to our album for the first time gave you something memorable, something that only you can describe (if it can be described even). As musicians we find comfort in providing music that listeners will love and in turn this motivates us to better ourselves and take what we do to the next level.

17. Any final words of wisdom?

Nic: Just stick to whatever it is that you love and are passionate about, and don't let up until you're satisfied with what you've achieved. There'll be times when doubt and demotivation kick in, but you'll only find out if it's what you really want to do if you push through.

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