A funny, perhaps obvious, thing happens when an artist listens to another artist’s music: they get inspired. No, this isn’t a repost of part 6’s discussion on musical influence. Rather, this final segment of the Uncovered interview focuses on a less obvious form of inspiration: when an artist already has effective material, how do they effectively release it?
As usual, there is an October Process to answer that question.
Interview with Marina Belica, Julie Flanders, and Emil Adler
(Continued from part 6)
Julie: We always trust our listeners. We know we have a special kind of listener. They can hear through to the song, and will also appreciate arrangement, and it will be a completely different experience. The other thing, the reason that people don’t love sophomore albums or third albums or 4th albums as much is because you get an album and you don’t know the songs yet. There’s something about a first album where you get this familiarity with a band, and the songs, and you love them. It becomes a soundtrack to your life. So in a weird way, it is a way to invite fans to the songs and form a relationship with the songs, and when the album comes, it may be closer to a first album experience. You already know the songs, so when you add the arrangement, you’re only adding one new part of the experience rather than feeling like you…
Emil: That is a terrific idea.
Julie: …have been put in a room of 12 strangers, or 10 strangers, which is what it feels like when you listen to a second album. You know, when you first get a new album by an artist you love, you’re like “ohh what is this? What is this?” then you sink into it because you know the songs. I’m a Dave Matthews fanatic, but I do find when I listen to a new album and I don’t know the songs yet, that I don’t prefer that album over the ones I know yet. It takes me until I am into it, and had my experiences with those songs. Marina, do you experience that too?
Marina: Oh, definitely. I find that the first time I listen through an album, it’s so much information. It’s a lot to listen to and discover. You need to settle in. For example, I have Feist’s new album, and I was so startled by so much of it on my first listen. I had to go back and listen to it in segments so I could actually take in what was happening. And then, by virtue of this happening, through increased familiarity, I started to unearth my favorites.
Julie: Right. That’s a really great way to discuss the process. Not only of being influenced, but also we’re all avid listeners in different ways. We really love other artists, which may be why a lot of our fans are artists! We’ve been talking about Uncovered, and then we have the album Covered, which was us really grooving on other people interpreting OP.
Marina: Right, another project initiated by virtue of the loft concerts. Because when people came to do a loft concert, we always invited them to sing an OP tune.
Julie: And then we started to discover that there were people we didn’t even know who had recorded and performed our songs, including a capella groups. That might be a fun thing for us to look at, finding fans singing songs on the internet, and people who have made videos to our music. For me, I’m a very visual person, so each song is a small film. When people make an anime of our work, or set it to images, it’s so incredible to me that people have that creativity and share it. That is my favorite thing about the Internet.
Emil: Minus the porn.
J.W.: So then, what you said about information; is that a benefit of releasing only 5 songs at a time?
Marina: Yes, it helps people settle in.
J.W.: It gives people less to digest.
Julie: Yes, 5 at a time, and then there will be 5 more. And of course a bonus or surprise. That’s always fun and we like to give it!
J.W.: And—speaking on behalf of October Project fans—we like to receive them! Which, of course, leads me to ask; when can we expect a follow-up to Uncovered? When can we expect more Uncovered?
Julie: We are working on the next 5 right now [Edit: More Uncovered available now at the October Project website!]. Of course, being parents, we find that the things that get in the way. Twins with pink-eye, a 16-year-old with mid-terms…all of the challenges, and joys, and rigors that go with being a person, and parent, as well as an artist. And yet, these same things about being a parent also open our artistic minds, inspiring each new song.
We hope you enjoyed this 7-part interview series on the Uncovered EPs. Follow the October Process blog for more exclusive content, including our upcoming series on the artists of “October Project: Covered.”
J.W. Harvey on Twitter: twitter.com/xjwharvey
Contact J.W. Harvey: James@OctoberProjectMusic.com