Svlphvrvs, is an act that came together, wrote and recorded some music, so much in fact, that it ended up being a 25-track album, with more material underway! Band mate Jason, discusses this release, a little band history, and what the future has planned.
1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.
Jason: Svlphvrvs is a new band with members whom otherwise have a long history with music. The band was started how a lot of bands were started, babbling over too many beers while at a show. A handful of us have been in bands together for A friend of mine suggested we do 7 punk/hard-core songs on a 7 inch, each a minute long, for a total of seven minutes. 7 songs in 7 minutes on a 7 inch. 7 7 7. The suggesting friend said he would play drums. A masterful guitarist, pianist and harmonica player, he had just started playing drums. Who's gonna play guitar? Jon, our guitarist in our other projects, and was sitting there with us said he would. Who's gonna play bass? There's one in my basement I said. I'll pick it up and play it. Who's gonna write the songs? I will I said. I'll pick up the bass, and write some songs. If they sound good, we'll know I did it right. I hadn't ever played a bass guitar (I primarily played keyboards for the last 15 years). The first seven went well, the drummer whose idea it was to start the band quit, out of horror of the actual realization of a drunken talk, and we found another drummer, the perfect one, to be precise. I had a mental hard-on, if you will, so I kept writing, within the framework of one-minute songs, until I reached 25. These 25 songs, almost in the order they were written, became our debut album, 'The Surfeit'.
Jon, our guitarist / response vocalist (I use the term 'response' in the context of a 'call and response' style of vocals. I scream something...then Jon screams something), and I, have been in bands together for about a decade. We have a current running, atmospheric post-sludge outfit called Beak. James Staffel, the drummer, comes from the Eastern influenced, experimental metal band, Yakuza.
2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?
Jason: Svlphvrvs, pronounced 'sulfurous', by one of the dictionary's definitions (other than containing, or smelling like or emanating from burning sulfur) is "pertaining to the fires of hell", :hellish or satanic", and "fiery or heated". The band had this name before those particular definitions were even bothered to be looked up, so I guess that's a happy coincidence. We don't consider ourselves typical in a satanic way, or satanically typical. We do skim the surface with songs that reference The Exorcist or mythological creatures that shoot flames out their ass as a defense mode, but that's a departure, or 'stretch' from our mainstay of deplorable vignettes the real world has to offer. Also, the music is so fast and violent, it kind of burns or sears it's way through the speakers, making it a perfectly apt name for this project. We switched up the spelling, and replaced the U's with V's. I'm also not a fan of this, and think bands that misspell their names to make them funky or catchy sounding or looking, are stupid. In our case, it just looked and sounded so perfect. It confuses people in that frustrating and fun sort of way, and that's what Svlphvrvs is on one hand; fun and frustrating. Or stupid.
3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?
Jason: Svlphvrvs is based out of Chicago, Illinois, USA. The music scene, is snotty, cliquey, and sort of controlled by industry folk, 'cool-kids', and feels a little like high school sometimes. It's also filled with some of the best people I know, including a lot of my closest friends, and the community can be very supportive of itself. It's both open and closed minded, and easy things can become difficult.
4. How would you describe your style?
Jason: I would have said crossover-thrash in a nut shell, but people seem to have other ideas...imagine that. Something that sounded natural enough to me while writing this stuff seems to have thrown people from whatever sort of contextual expectation they had, for a loop. A sign of decent art right? There, I said art. Art-core? Power-art-violence? Sounds taboo or sacrilegious. Good. I'm also happy describing it as others do, because the public's perception, right or wrong, is right. A French review said that with a little imagination, it is quite conceivable to see this as a 70's improvisational psyche group discovering the joys of brutal Crossover, without knowing the style that will exist a decade later...a new form of Crossovery that stings of Hardcore, thrash, blues, sludge, stoner. When we were putting these songs together we joked of a 'doom-core' idea.
5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?
Jason: The current and debut album, 'The Surfeit', is what there is right now. It came out at the end of May. There's more in the works, but 25 songs should be enough to tide anyone interested over for now.
6. Do you have any new music in the works?
Jason: There's always more. Even when there's not, there's always ideas.
7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?
Jason: We've played mostly locally so far, but luckily so, with the likes of D.R.I., Sheer Terror, The Business, Melt Banana, Trash Talk, and more. We welcome the idea of touring if becomes justified or demanded, but we'll see how this record catches on.
8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?
Jason: Aside from trying to meet any demand that's generated with a live presence, with any project that's worth caring about, I'd like to progress with the songs in a way that sounds natural to the maturation process regarding an entity that might be Svlphvrvs. Maybe a two minute song instead of one? Maybe more creepy clean vocals? Not sure. Our camp's style seems to be generated from an organic progression in which you see what happens with your beginnings in the end, as opposed to having a fixed or planned end in sight.
9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?
Jason: Our bandcamp page is the most direct and user friendly avenue in my opinion. You can download the record there as well as order a physical copy of the CD that has some really dope packaging. It's one of my favorite album covers to date, incidentally. Go here please: http://svlphvrvs.bandcamp.com/. Otherwise, I believe it's on Spotify and bastardized, last ditch musical subscription endeavors like that. You can also download it from; Amazon, iTunes, etc. Oh, and like us on our Facebook page.
10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?
Jason: Remember the name, take away an experience that makes you come back. Modestly speaking, it's delivery should leave an impression; 25 spastic songs with nauseating tempo changes, seamlessly strung together, connected by each other or some absurd movie sample, like a musical noise centipede, instead of just a human one. Who doesn't want that?