Souls Extolled Talks of Current Material, Playing Shows and More!

Elemental band SOULS EXTOLLED have a single and two records out there, with another single expected out real soon! Some shows are also expected come the fall and into the next year as well. The band talks of their content and their future ahead.

1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Zach Black, a singer-songwriter and guitarist from Honolulu birthed the idea for Souls Extolled during his sophomore year at the University of Texas in 2014. However, the project didn’t take solid form until early 2019 when Black’s path crossed with that of bassist JP Ortiz and drummer Joe Valadez, both Austin music scene veterans. After only a few jam sessions Black saw the trio’s potential and spontaneously pitched his vision to them for Souls Extolled. And the rest as they say, is history.

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

One of Zach Black’s early mentors in the Austin music scene, Greg Maneikis, had discovered him playing at various open mics and was one of the first believers in the young talent. He not only helped the band in its early stages with everything from booking to appearing with them during performances as a masked hype man, but he also came up with the name of the band. A lyricist and poet himself, Maneikis came across the word ‘Extolled’ and was reminded of Black’s intense existential songwriting style. He resolved shortly thereafter that ‘Souls Extolled’ was the perfect name for Black’s eventual rock band, and Black agreed wholeheartedly.

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

Souls Extolled has the great privilege of calling ‘The Live Music Capital of the World’ their home city. Even despite the gut-punch the scene took this past year, its altogether still expansive and thriving! There’s an abundance of opportunities for bands in Austin from awesome places to play, to great studios and practice spaces, to local publications, shows, and organizations that do a lot to support and promote local artists. Most importantly, Austinites love their local music scene and make up the greatest fan base any artist could as for! As such, there’s an enormous quantity of bands here, and it never ceases to amaze the guys how good everybody else is! You’d be hard pressed to find an Austin band that isn’t worth a recommendation.

4. How would you describe your style?

This is a difficult question for them to answer, as within rock they’re genre smashing like crazy! You could say that they’re blending various elements of classic rock and metal with grunge and ska punk, and some indie rock in there too. The intense existential vibes laced throughout the music and lyrics is certainly a big part of it as well. Altogether their goal is to create the next evolution of rock by incorporating and fusing their favorite sub-genres in a way that is hopefully novel, but also familiar and awesome!

5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?

They’ve got two records out and a single! The first record ‘Follow the Ghosts’ is more raw, and so doesn’t blend the sub-genres as liberally between songs. As such the songs vary quite a bit, but the band loves the way the album flows and is proud of it as a worthy starting point. Their second record ‘Seraphic War’ is definitely a concise step forward as it blends the sub-genres more consistently throughout the songs and is a clear concept record. With ‘Seraphic War’ they definitely feel like they’re finding their sound! Finally, they have a fun ska-punk single out called ‘Rabbit Hole’, which is really a relief from their usual intensity. Overall though, it’s safe to say you can usually expect high-energy, dark rock n’ roll from Souls Extolled.

6. Do you have any new music in the works?

They sure do! They’re going to release another single, ‘The Crucible’, in October with a music video, and then next year will be dropping one single per month cumulating into their third record!

7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

They’ve got some great shows going on in Texas throughout the rest of the year and are in the process of planning tours to the West Coast and Northeast in 2022.

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

Their plan is just to keep going! They do this for one reason and one reason alone: because they love it! They just want to keep having these awesome experiences and having fun, and if they work hard and they’re lucky, they hope it’ll continue to get more and more awesome. With the year they lost to the pandemic they’ve been an active band for less than two years, so there’s a lot they haven’t done yet. Lots of boxes to check, and they’re looking forward to the ride!

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

It’s on all the major platforms, but the guys tend to push Spotify the most. As far as buying Bandcamp is great, and merch through the website. As ‘Seraphic War’ is largely about social justice, the band donates all revenue from its sales and streams to Police Oversight Project in Austin. They try to be on any and all platforms they’re aware of as they deeply appreciate folks listening and supporting, and want them to be able to extoll their souls on their preferred platform.

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

There are still people out there who believe rock music can change the world. That’s Souls Extolled. 

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