‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next is Sam from progressive post-rock band Opium Eater, who recently signed with Australian label Art As Catharsis who will release their full length debut, ‘Ennui’, on the 12th of October.
When/where was the new album recorded?
The bulk of the material was recorded at Blue Barn studio in Wellington over the space of two very long days in September last year, with some finishing touches added later on. Vocals were recorded at Forkhead studios throughout the early months of this year.
Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
James Goldsmith engineered the album and we ended up deciding to have him mix it as well. This was then sent over to Audiosiege in the USA for mastering. The tracks were written and road-tested through numerous performances in the two years leading up to the recording sessions. This level of familiarity meant that we were able to knock out the bulk of the recording out very quickly.
How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
The blueprints for each song were mostly written by individual members of the band, which were then brought to the table to be fleshed out as a collective. I wouldn’t say that there are any specific themes going on throughout the record, however a lot of thought was put into making it a cohesive journey from start to finish.
Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
Being our debut full-length album, I feel a lot of our process in putting this together was about us finding our sound and what we want to achieve musically and sonically as a collective. It’s funny, because we put out the ‘Canis Major’ EP in 2015, in which we were trying to explore our more textural side in a single long-form piece. However, it has felt like that one doesn’t represent us as a whole. With that in mind, it’s really good to have this one finished, because I really feel this one really does showcase all facets of what we do. Regarding the production style, we worked alongside James to attempt to really capture our live energy on through the engineering and mixing processes. This was something that was very important to us and it feels as though it has been very successful.
Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
The album was recorded live with most of the gear that we would use at our shows. This was crucial in capturing the aforementioned energy and overall feel. We also did a series of overdubs (mostly added guitar layers), which were captured through James’ impressive array of guitar amps. It should be said that we are also fiends for effects pedals, which were used heavily throughout the tracking process.
Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
This is quite a tough question as I feel that each track has a feel that is distinctive to the others on the record. We chose ‘Babelsteps’ as the lead single as we felt that it captures most facets of our sound in an immediate and somewhat palatable way.
Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
The album will be officially released on October 12th on a variety of digital platforms (Bandcamp, iTunes, Spotify) and will also be released physically on CD. We would have liked to have pressed it to vinyl as well, but unfortunately the album ended up being too long!
Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs?
We have had a bit of interest in this area from a few people who work within that realm, however nothing is as of yet in the works. Watch this space!