Ocasan

Get ready for another British rock invasion; Northampton UK's Ocasan debut album Ricochet has just come out on June 10th, 2012.  Produced by Romesh Dodangoda (Manic Street Preachers, Lostprophets, Bullet For My Valentine, Attack Attack) they are already getty accolades from different medias in the industry.  For example, Kerrang! said their songs are fantastic and Rocksound,  insanely catchy.  Ocasan will be playing their first Canadian show during the NXNE events.  Drummer and band leader Luke McDonnell took the time to answer VYGoes360's questions in the interview below.  For more info on this band and tour dates, visit: www.facebook.com/OcasanMusic
 
Interview by: Valerie Bastien
Valerie: Tell us about the history of your band and how you got together.

Luke: We met in Bath around 7 years ago. A Scotsman, Englishman and Irishman (We're still waiting for someone to make up a decent joke) I found Nick singing his heart out in town and had to have him. Rich used to tech for the studio we rehearsed in. He heard a track we were working on and shouted "I've got an idea" whilst running out the room. He returned ten minutes later with a bass guitar and a badass groove to go with it. We've been like brothers since.

Valerie: You will be releasing your debut album Ricochet on June 12th, 2012.

Luke: Yes! We've worked long and hard on this record. Blood, sweat and tears went into every lyric and we're really proud of the end result. We can't wait for the world to hear it.
   
Valerie: Ricochet was produced by Romesh Dodangoda. As a young band working with such an experienced producer, there must have been a few learning opportunities during the recording process. Describe one of them.

Luke: I think faith was a big lesson. We're very particular when it comes to our sound and made a lot of fuss over certain sections. There were odd occasions where Romesh would say, for example "Guys, leave this verse vocal with me, I've got an idea" - So we'd disappear out for a skeptical cigarette break, come back in and either say "That's it! That's what we were after" or "S**t wasn't expecting that, Love it!" We worked the guy to the bone and he never disappointed.

Valerie: The first single and video is called No One's Safe in Soho; what is this song about?

Luke: One summer I couldn't help but notice the streetlights above me. They were surrounded in this floating mist. On closer inspection I saw that it was a tornado of insects buzzing around a glistening web. I thought to myself "You clever little bastard, build your web near the light and let the flies come to you."
No One’s Safe in Soho is a story/metaphor of a girl that uses the lights of Soho to capture her "prey". She picks on the seedy men and has her way with them.  "Clever girls build their webs near the light, gives them a choice of what to bite"

Valerie: What other topics have you written about on this album?

Luke: We've hit on classic topics that have universal appeal such as love, loss, betrayal etc. but squeezed in cryptic twists and metaphors.  Some are from personal experience, some are examples of story-telling with artistic license. There is certainly something in this album for everyone.

Valerie: What is your favourite song on the album?

Luke:  When You're Around has always been a personal favorite. It was written one hazy, red wine induced evening from start to finish in about 20 minutes, as opposed to over a month with other tracks. It’s raw and has the same energy on stage today as it did when we first wailed it through red stained lips.

Valerie: Describe a song that in the contrary took very long!

Luke: Ah, a contrast. Drama Queen. The song was inspired by 'Charmless Man' by Blur. We ended up rewriting the verses three times. It's a great song with a huge chorus. Definitely a crowd favorite live.

Valerie: What song is the most meaningful to you and why?

Luke: I could sit and talk for hours about every line of every song and its meaning. We spent well over a year crafting it. But, for interview sake, I suppose Josephine is a pretty cool track. Not only for the song, but the music video too. Jospehine was my first crush as a kid. I was utterly smitten by this girl. One thing led to another and I didn't get to ever see her again, until writing the track. Just before the video was shot, some of the planets must have aligned as, out of the blue, Josephine got in touch. With it being such an incredible coincidence I had to try my luck and ask if she'd be willing to play herself in the video. She did and you can see it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zJcVzVPCLk4


We've been really close ever since and she’s even been on tour with us around Russia.

Valerie: That's an incredible story! You will be on your way to Canada next week for the NXNE. What are you looking forward to the most?

Luke: We really don't know what to expect. So many of the dates have been kept quiet from us, we're pretty excited. Riot Rock, our new management, have been working really hard for us and it's really starting to show. We've had an incredible response so far from Canadian fans. Providing the shows reflect this, it should be mind blowing. Obviously Canada is a big old place compared to our tiny island so many of these fans won’t be able to make the shows but we're promising to make every gig phenomenal - for those that will be traveling it will be worth every mile.

Valerie: What are your touring plans for this summer?

Luke: Once we get back from Canada we have 2-3 week tour around the UK. We've then got plans for hitting Europe and possibly, word on the grapevine is we may be back to Canada/US later in the year.









VYGoes360
Valerie Bastien is a vocal coach, teacher, musician and freelance journalist.
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