I love Canadian bands. So man y and so few that have disappointed me. ÆPOCH are no exception. Interview answered by (Brett, Fretless Bass & Vocals) and Kyle (Guitar) answered it. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
Let’s start with your latest recording. When you look back at it now what kind of feelings do you have for it?
Brett – Fond memories for the most part. Our producer Jonah was a pleasure to work with. Besides the nightmare or recording rhythm guitars including our guitar player Bobby stopping showing up to recording sessions and leaving the band – that hindered the progress – but fortunately Kyle was able to finish tracking all rhythms and our friend/ prodigy kid Taylor happened to be jamming with Greg and I in another project. It just made sense to have him track the remaining solos. Jonah also helped me tweak my bass solos. Not to mention Jonah and Nic were excellent to work with for editing and mixing notes.
I am fascinated by band names. What was it that made you settle on the one you have and what does it mean to you?
Brett – Our original guitarist Chris thought of the name Epoch which is like a reference of eras in time and since there were already a couple bands with that name, I suggested the Aether symbol. We’ve grown quite attached to having the Aether symbol in the name, even if it makes us harder to locate online. All of our tags are simply Aepoch.
What does it mean to you that there are people out there that actually appreciate and look forward to what you are doing?
Brett – For me it means the world. I am a fan first. I am a huge supporter of music and to be honest this is one of the reasons I have always so passionately supported bands; what comes around goes around. I hate to sound arrogant, but I think it’s finally our time. We have worked hard for the last 5 years plus as I said I have been hardcore supporting music for roughly 15 years. Now its our time.
How important is image to the band? What impression do you want the fans to get of the band?
Brett – The image of the band is very important. We want the fans to see us as a group of four Metalheads playing metal we love and paying homage to all our influences and inspirations. All four of us have slightly different sub-genre preferences; like Kyle loves his Thrash and Melo Death and Greg loves his Prog, but at the end of the day we are all fans of not only Death Metal but all Metal and we like to look like the Metalheads that we are. I also think that the way we look also helps portray how our music sounds; like we don’t want to look out of place from what we are playing. I hope that a fan seeing us live or seeing picture of us can be like “Those guys look cool as fuck!”
I am a huge fan of LP art work. How important is it to have the right art work for your album?
Brett – For me it was very important that the art reflects the lyrics. For the cover art I sent Justin Abraham my 4 favourite sets of lyrics from the album and asked him to create his visual depiction. The cover is supposed to depict a nightmarish supernova, created by the power of human thought.
We live in a superficial world today where you don’t exist if you are not on Youtube and Facebook. Has social media been only beneficial in socializing with the fans or is there a down side to it too?
Brett – For a young band like us, I see no downside to social media! All platforms have their benefits for certain levels. Right now bandcamp, facebook, youtube, Instagram and twitter are vital for us to stay relevant in the online metal scene. BigCartel, is not the best for a smaller band like us because we don’t sell enough merch to make the pro membership worth it. Once we pick up sales we will move platforms from bandcamp to BigCartel.
When you play in a band does it feel like you are a part of a massive community? That you belong to something that gives meaning to your life?
Brett – Oh absolutely! Especially in our local scene. Our scene in KWC, ON is just thriving! Lots of good up and coming bands and we are proud to have been in the scene since it started picking back up. Even in our jam hall there is many other great bands whom we are friends with. The local bands all support each other passionately here and fans too. Online the community is great too. I have been heavily involved for at least the last 6 years and know many fans and bands. Really the more involved you are the more it will help your band.
When you are in the middle of it do you notice what state our beloved music scene is in? Is the scene healthy or does it suffer from some ailment?
Brett – You know, that’s hard to say because there are different factors. As I mentioned before, our local scene here is thriving. I genuinely believe it is currently one of the strongest scenes in Canada right now. It really is fantastic! Of course certain things sow it down now and then on the larger scale. When streaming got huge, ect. But bands have to either adapt or become obsolete. I believe the general state of the scene could be better but as far as live shows go around here, its going quite well.
How much of a touring band are you guys? How hard is it to get gigs outside of your borders?
Brett – We haven’t really done any legit touring yet. Some minor support runs like 3-4 days but this is our first big tour. Reason being jobs and funds. Touring is very expensive and there is essentially no payback besides exposure at our level, and of course the memories and experiences. For getting gigs afar I’ll answer in 2 ways. For gigs outside the boarder of Ontario, it hasn’t been that hard. Of course you have to talk to many people but it has generally worked out in our favour. We have actually had several smaller touring and show opportunities for the US come up since 2016 but have turned them down for several reasons. Mainly the cost of visas. The cost of visas and work permits is so high for Canadian bands to enter the Us that the only way to make it worth it is for us to become a full time touring band for that year. We are not in the position in our personal lives where we can take that step yet. We hope to make it to the USA or even Europe ASAP but were being realistic with our choices of what to pursue. That all being said we have other potential Canadian touring plans for later this year and we do plan to get the visas next year hopefully to break into the US market.
What will the future bring?
Brett – We very much look forward to the future. Like I said, it’s our time. Karma has made its course and we are ready. We already have 2 more albums of material basically complete, and we only just started writing with our new guitarist Taylor. This spring everything has timed out perfectly for us and we are riding a high that cant be stopped. The future is looking bright. We have immediate plans for more gigs once we are back from tour as well as a hopeful vinyl release of our album and more shirts for the summer.