Saturday 28 April 2012

Interview with Jason Wright

...And This Will Soon Pass Cover Art

Here is an interview with Wizardrone and God's Speed main man – Jason Wright. I recently done an article on his awesome God's Speed Project.

Q1 – Can you give us an introduction about yourself and why you came decided to do Wizardrone and then God's Speed.

Greetings, this is Jason and I began experimenting with music as a teenager. I never considered myself to be a "good musician" by any stretch of the imagination. Only played a little acoustic guitar and banged around on a set of drum pads that I had up until 2006, when I purchased a Ludwig acoustic set and a Squier six-string. 

A few months later, I had acquired a Squier bass to go with it. At this point in my life, I was going through a lot. My father passed in late 2006 and had recently went through a divorce. And during the entire process, my constant struggle with alcohol had reached an all-time peak. It was time to take a different direction with my life.

In 2007, as a way to clear my head and begin taking the negative focus and putting it in a more positive and productive direction and light, I began recording. All the sounds of insanity in my head were being laid to tape finally.

The first project was called "Jake Legg Inc" and was later changed to "Mindphuckd"...There is a very obscure album that I recorded under the latter that I may remaster later and make available, but the sound quality is very, very low-fi. From the ashes of that project, came "The Ageless Relics" in 2008.

This is where the music started really coming together in an awesome way. Several demo tracks were recorded in late 2008, and were re-recorded in 2010 on what would become the only "Ageless Relics " album titled "A State Of Lost Cause And Effect".

Then in 2009, "Wizardrone" was born. With focus primarily on straight vintage Sabbath-style psychedelic doom, it garnered some attention from Doom Metal Alliance's (Doommantia's) own Ed Barnard and Sludge Swamp's Mari Moroni. 

Both of whom have been a vital staple in the success of the project. They have promoted to the ends of the earth for the project and many thanks go to them.

2011 saw the beginning of the "God's Speed" project, technically a spin-off of the Wizardrone project in which a track title of the same name can be found on the third Wizardrone album titled "The Third Coming". 

The material on the God's Speed album dealt with the darker side of life on a more personal level. It is a call-to-arms and a release of bottled emotions in the style of traditional doom metal.

Q2 – Not to compare one act over the other I think God's Speed latest album “...And This Shall Soon Pass” is your best work to date. How do you keep both projects apart. Their must be times when you think this music falls better under the other.

Well, initially the idea behind the "God's Speed" project was to act as a mature replacement for "Wizardrone". Upon the advice of my good friend and mentor Mr Barnard, I decided to reinstate the latter. By that time, I had already written and prepared material for the upcoming album "...And This Will Soon Pass" so I had decided to let it be. 

With my projects, I have a very clear and intentional vision on the end result, but there are times when I let some things just happen the way they seem as they should happen at the time it does happen. 

With Wizardrone, the idea is more of an approach in a theme of evil/spooky and from a mythical perspective; While God's Speed is more in the realm of dark reality and personal demons.

Q3 – Who are your main influences. Any artists that really stand out for you at the moment.

Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Uriah Heep, Saint Vitus, Sleep, Acid King, Yob, Sons Of Otis and (classic) Melvins are all influences

Q4 – Why did you put Wizardrone originally on hold (But its now active again). Any reason for this. As its an awesome project you should rightly be proud of.

At the time, I wanted to feel a sense of "progression" in my music as my emotions in reality were also changing. I had felt at the time that the Wizardrone project had fully run it's course and couldn't advance any further or venture into uncharted realms that it hasn't already explored. 

After recording "...And This Will Soon Pass" I had realized that I was wrong. In fact, I had realized that the Wizardrone project had yet to fully encompass the dimensions I had envisioned it would in the very beginning.

Q5 – There is a great solo artist/one-man band scene going on at the moment. Deterior, Cloudkicker, Black Oak Decline and Judd Madden. Are you a fan of them or any others that we are not aware of. Do you compare yourself to those great acts.

Honestly, I have not checked any of these out (but certainly will)..."The Lazarus Complex" is an excellent one-man project that I particularly enjoy and "Goetic Circle". I just enjoy psychedelic doom...both checking out bands with the ethereal sound and recording my own.

Most of the bands I enjoy are full bands and I believe I challenge myself to create some of my own material to rival the sound that is heard from these acts.

Q6 – Do you find it hard to come up with new material. If so how do you combat writer's block.

Not at all..But the music just has to happen, it must flow..It cannot be forced. It starts with a riff, then builds on that. Next thing you know, you have drums and bass chugging along behind it. And since I have always enjoyed writing poetry and lyrics about the darker side of life, the vocals are finished pretty quickly once the song begins to come together.

I have never found it hard to combat writer's block because it has never happened..The reason being is because if the idea or the material is there, then it's there. If not, I just wait until it is there. Letting things come together in it's own time makes for a peaceful and productive recording experience!

Q7 – Do you have a day job/family that limits your time on your musical endeavours.

Yes, work 40+ hours every week with one child that stays very active and involved in activities throughout the week .So, this greatly limits the time I spend on music..It began as a simple hobby and became a passion. 

But all the while, I must remain humble and focused on my priorities. I must always remember where the music all began.

Q8 – Have you ever been part of a band or any plans to. If you do or did what do you like best doing solo or band vibes.

Never until about two months ago. I am working on a Christian funeral doom project with three friends from different corners of the earth called "Faithless Minutes Devoured". The material on the upcoming album (due for a release this year) is amazing with excellent musicians (and guests) making excellent music. 

It is themed at the final days that we are living and has a very epic feel to it.. But have never been involved with or part of a local band of any kind.

Q9 – How has the reaction to both of your projects. Good/Negative Press. How do you deal with negative press.

I am trying to be as grounded as possible in replying to this, but so far (so good) I have yet to receive any negative press for any of my projects. It could be that people are just humoring me and being courteous, but thus far - it has been nothing but positive!

Q10 – I have to ask this question but it has been a popular one. What is your stance with major league labels closing down blogs and websites that share links. (I stay on the right side folks. Never share anything.)

Well, myself personally - anything that will promote the name or "get it out there" is alright by me..I don't have a solid stance on this subject, as getting the music heard is the most important thing to myself.

But again, all of the music recorded for my projects are recorded at home, so there is no studio time on the bill. Not a lot of cost goes into the recordings except for normal wear and tear on equipment..So, I cannot comment either way myself on sharing.

Q11 - As you know my blog promotes underground bands who give their music away for free. Some bands are against this. What is your view.

The main idea is to get the music heard, with or without the sale. It would honestly be more rewarding to have 1,000 people who downloaded an album for free and have it heard by more than to have 100 copies of an album sold and heard by less. 

I choose to sell both the CD and the digital download albums (at the most reduced price I can allow) to help cover costs of wear and tear on equipment. But I know as well as the next person, that if an album is popular enough, the public will find a way of obtaining it for free.. Guess what? That still allows it to be heard, and that is the main idea! It's a win either way.

Q12 – What are your plans in the future. Any more releases coming soon.

Indeed..There are plans to record two new Wizardrone albums this year. The first will be a professional re-recording of "The Third Coming" which will be titled "The Last Coming" and the second will be an album with all new material. 

There will also be an official "best-of" compilation that will be pressed to CD toward the end of the year. As for the God's Speed project, I will begin writing new material for that project once the Wizardrone fecordings are complete and it could be expected to see another release from that project sometime next year.

The Faithless Minutes Devoured project will see an album release this year as I previously mentioned.

I want to thank you for taking time out to answer these questions. I hope you continue making excellent music for a long time to come. (Apologies for sounding like Bill & Teds Excellent Sludge Adventure).

Thank you very much, Steve.. It was an honor, brother..

 (No dude. Honor was all mine).