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Interview with Esperance
Hello there, nice to have you on Volatile Weekly! What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music, what would you be doing today?
From a very young age, I was exposed to a lot of early rock/metal bands like Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, etc. Which was thanks to my mother always having them on in the car. It wasn’t until my teenage years that I picked up the guitar and from there I never put it down again. If I wasn’t playing music, I think maybe I would have liked to been more involved in health and fitness/sports. Whether competing or working in that field somewhere.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music, and how does that influence your creativity?
A lot of my time when I’m not actually playing music revolves around the business side of things. That’s things like talking to people to organize recording, mixing, filming music videos, artwork, etc. There’s a lot going on behind the scenes that people don’t really see. Luckily our manager Mark Winders is really good at sourcing that sort of stuff and it makes it so much easier on Mel and me. It’s hard to find a balance between that stuff and then finding the creativity to keep writing new music.
How long has your band been around?
I think around 2016/2017 in the very earliest stages of forming and writing songs. But our first release was last year so 2022 would be more accurate to say we’ve been active from.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We are based out of Adelaide in South Australia. In the Adelaide metal scene, most metal bands fall into the death metal or thrash metal sub genres so it was a good point of difference for us to focus on a more melodic style.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
I get asked this a lot because it is the name of a town in Western Australia and people ask whether it is in reference to that. While the answer is not directly, it does suit us being from Australia ourselves. How we came up with the name was at a band meeting after struggling to find a suitable name for a long time, our band manager sent us all away after a band meeting with the task of coming back to the next meeting with 5 or so names each. One of the names I came back with was Esperance due to living near a street named Esperance drive at the time. I brought that back and everyone unanimously agreed on that name.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
At the moment, we are still in the phase of releasing singles, building up a fan base and promoting ourselves so we haven’t been able to play any shows as a band as of yet.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
I’m not sure I have a favorite venue to play at yet. I think a place that I would love to play one day would be the Wacken Open Air festival.
If you could play any show with any line-up, who would be on the ticket?
Probably Nightwish, Sonata Arctica and us. That would be epic.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Practice is the main thing as a young musician. There’s no substitute for putting in the hours on your instrument to improve. Also I think don’t be afraid to learn music theory, at minimum learn the notes, scales, chords and basic harmony. It makes it easier to communicate with other musicians when you are working with them.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
To be more assertive from the start. Giving people deadlines to complete whatever it is they’re working on that we desperately need. You lose a lot of time waiting for people whether that be artwork, recording, etc. Before you know it, a year or two may have passed.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Out of our released songs, I’d have to say Panacea. However there is one song that is planned to be released in the upcoming year, which was written about a close friend who passed away. I think people are going to like that song.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
Again, Panacea so far for me out of the songs we have released. It also seems to be the more popular song.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
I usually start with a melody. I can’t really explain how I come up with them. Sometimes inspired by something I’m listening to or sometimes just noodling on my guitar. Then I’ll usually come up with a chord progression behind it, come up with some riffs, other backing instruments and song structure, then present it to everyone to listen to and see what they think. Then usually, the lyrics come last. I will send a draft to Mel and she will make alterations to the lyrics and melody to make them actually singable as I tend to write far too many lyrics.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
I like to try and tell stories with the songs I write rather than any messaging. It's cool to hear other people’s interpretations of the lyrics, even if that wasn’t my original intention.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
Not any major ones and it’s never personal. It’s usually just about what direction to take next. If it gets to that, we usually outsource it to trusted parties and see what their feedback is.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
We have some more singles ready to be released in the upcoming year and then after that hopefully release an EP or album if all goes well. We also really want to start touring sooner rather than later.
How can your fans best keep up to date with you, any socials you want people to check out?
Usually our Facebook page is the best way to keep up to date with us. Also our YouTube channel, which we will post any music videos or any footage we have to share.