BOOK OF WYRMS might not go where no band hasn’t gone before but the way they go about business is so darn good that you should not miss out on it. Anders Ekdahl ©2017
Was it hard to come up with a name? What does the name mean to you?
Jay Lindsey: Yes, it’s always hard to come up with names. It just sounds kind of eerie and arcane, so we were into that. It’s more of an introverted idea.
Sarah Moore-Lindsey: I feel like the name evokes some kinds of fantastic, storybook, and doomed adventures, and we have come to embrace dragons as a symbol of the band.
Who would say are the founding stones of the kind of sound you have? Who are your house Gods and how have they coloured your music?
Jay: Sabbath and Hawkwind are the obvious starting points, and we love contemporary bands like High on Fire, the Melvins, and Danava. But I think we’re pretty well-served by having a bunch of weirdos in the band, so there’s influences from everything from Mercyful Fate to Cactus.
When you play slow do you have to think differently arranging the music than if you play faster and vice versa?
Jay: Yes for sure. Slow gives you all this space – you can improvise, you can make noises, you can leave silences. But the flip side is that you’ve got to keep the train moving. So there needs to be builds and syncopations that lead to the next moment. When things are fast, you’re obligated to sort of “clean up” – get less distorted, less improvisational, because there’s just already so much information going to the listener.
How does your music work in a live environment?
Sarah: We play shows the same way we practice: loud. It can be hard for me to hear a pitch now and then but we treat our gigs like we would a practice. That also says something about our practicing: we take each performance as seriously as the next and just enjoy doing what we love. It’s important to have a sense of humor while you’re serious though.
How important is having a label to back you up today when you can just release your music on any sort of platform online? Are there any negative consequences to music being too readily available to fans?
Sarah: We are supremely lucky to be able to release our album through Twin Earth Records. Rick from Twin Earth has enabled us to release our album on vinyl (expected in May) and helped us press what we’ve worked so hard on. I have only experienced positive results from our music being readily available. We get a lot of listeners who would otherwise never see us play live. But I guess since the band is pretty young still we will see how it works out.
I get the feeling that fans that are true to a band, is a lost thing with the easy access to music these days. Do you feel that this is a bad thing or are there any positive aspects of it at all?
Sarah: I think the more access to music, the better. I love how easy it is to upload a song and have a guy, say, from Italy listen to it. I disagree with the idea that fans are less loyal to bands with so many sounds to choose from. I think if a band is consistent yet always challenges themselves, it will earn the honor of a fan’s devotion. It’s easier for fans to geek out on a particular band with so many types of shirts, swag, color vinyl and limited edition releases available, too. There’s also a person out there with a Ruby the Hatchet grinder. That’s fan dedication.
What to you is a great front cover? What should a cover have to make it great?
Jay: It has to spark the imagination. I hate a boring cover – don’t you want your record to be part of someone’s listening ritual? Like, do you want to be the band that comes on their workout playlist or do you want to be the band that makes them want to light incense and sit in their listening spot with your art in their lap?
Sarah: For this release and our demo, we chose Taralyn Phillips (@coffeellips). We gave her a few buzzwords and a general direction, and then she took it from there. We want the art to obviously make you interested enough to listen to the record. Dynamic colors are important, and a compelling title of course.
Do you feel that you are part of a national scene? What is the climate for metal in your country?
Sarah: There’s definitely a stoner scene in different parts of the US but those scenes extend to Europe, Asia, Australia, and beyond as more as people have increased access to the Internet. I suppose on a national level, metal is becoming more mainstream. At this point, though, it’s almost difficult to talk about metal as a whole without referring to specific subgenres. There is also an elitist element, especially in certain subgenres, where new music is met with scorn because it breaks some rules.
I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when your out) but I fear that soon music as we know it will be dead and buried. What are your worries as a band?
Sarah: In my lifetime alone, music has transformed through so many types of technology that it’s hard to say if anything is permanent. I grew up playing my parents’ records and cassette tapes, listened to CDs in high school, downloaded mp3s in college, hated how mp3s sounded after college, and am now back on CDs, digital music, and vinyl. I do fear that amazing sounds can and will remain buried, hidden, and unlistenable for future generations. Those lost riffs are gone forever at the public’s whim. While that thought is haunting, the potential dearth leaves room for new sounds and opens more ears to new music. Creating music will never stop.
What does the future hold?
Sarah: We will be going on a few long weekend runs in January and hopefully the spring, and we would like to play as many festivals as possible in 2017. This week the CDs (Sci-Fi/Fantasy) will arrive at our house in a giant box, and that is what we are most looking forward to right now.