Exclusive Interview: Abstractian talk “Box Of Frogs (Poison)”!
Eccentric, ecclectic and madder than a box of frogs, the debut full length album from science fiction loving apocalyptic wasteland dwellers Abstractian (pronounced Ab-stract-ee-an) is really good fun with more plot twists than the finest of thrillers. After reviewing the album we had a few burning questions so here are the answers in the first of a creature double feature of an interview!
“Rumour” and “My Other Side” as singles have been out a good few months now, so how have you found the reaction to them so far as precursors to the album? “We were really excited to start getting music out there and in truth put it out when production wise it was a bit raw… some people fed this back to us and we listened and improved our production a lot for the album. Musically we’ve received some really nice support and interest. Lots of play on metal focused online radio and some awesome comments. While they haven’t exactly blown up, people seem to really like the direction we are taking and seem eager for more!”
The sound of Abstractian is one that is very difficult to genre tag; so what has gone into the melting pot to create the sound, who are your influences and what outside of music has inspired you? “We said from the beginning we weren’t bothered about genres. It seems to be the first things metalheads want to do is to put you in some kind of box (anyone mention the title?) but our music tends to not be limited by any genre focus. Some have said melodic metal, others prog, some even said “oh its death metal” and we’re like “really? I’m pretty sure it’s not”. Truth is influences come from all over! Joe writes a lot of it and is influenced by everything from Killswitch, Dragonforce and Periphery to Deep Purple, Sabbath and RATM but Ria is somewhere between a pop princess and terrifying netherworld beast (not just her voice). Andy is a dance monkey and loves his trance pads to book end a track and Rupert just drums like his life depends on it and what comes out makes it onto the record! We’ve found a really nice balance and above all we get on so well that we accept all our ‘ahem’ “strengths” and form a gluey musical menagerie”
In our review we’ve mentioned how fun the album is, but one song stands out like a sore thumb, the more personal “Love Won’t Solve You” which is about substance abuse. Did you ever think twice about putting it on the record or is that extra level of depth something you were keen to show off? It works very well from an engaging, emotional standpoint. “We wanted a track on the album that both showed off Ria’s pipes but also acted as a refreshing mid point during the madness. We’ve all known people who have struggled with addiction so it seemed fitting to work together on a more emotional track that served these purposes. We wanted a fun album but also some depth on there. Never thought twice about the contrast, in fact the opposite, it was purpose written to sit exactly where it is! We love it when music surprises…”
What was behind the decision to leave your single “Argon” behind and not include it on the album?“Honestly it was not about the track itself and a little more practical, we changed drummer early on in our journey, Argon was with a different drummer and there were no hard feelings but we were headed in different directions and given the length of the album we didn’t feel it necessary to go back and rerecord Argon. That said, never say never, it could end up being reimagined for the next one!”
If you could bring a guest onto the next record or to join you for a track live, whose skills do you admire enough to get in touch with?“I’m pretty sure it would never happen but working with someone like Spencer from Periphery with his incredible vocal versatility and agility would be a fantastic counterpoint to Ria. We are a big fan of vocalists with flexibility and different ‘modes’, I mean Tatiana from Jinjer would be incredible too, so you can sense the theme!”
You’ve mentioned a bassist search and had guitarist Joe Richardson play the bass parts on the album so how’s that coming along? Are you hopeful of playing shows before the year is out? “Definitely! We need to get to a point where we can properly rehearse the album through well enough and then figure out either a live bassist or dare I say some kind of backing track option (we’d prefer the former) and then we’d love to get out there. In truth a lot of the tracks are written with live in mind, big drops, breakdowns, lighter in the air, mosh in your face… its what is in Joe’s mind a lot of the time when writing. The actual focus to put the band together came out of the twickenham mosh pit for metallica a few years back, so while we have been focused on recording, live is definitely coming someday, somehow!”