Tuesday, 6 August 2013

The Flying Eyes Interview



The Flying Eyes are a psychedelic blues rock band from Baltimore, Maryland, USA, who brilliantly merge Jimi Hendrix style riffing, gravelly blues vocals and thumping drum beats with the atmospheric, acid-driven melodies of the sixties. After the recent release of their latest album, Lowlands, I caught up with Elias from the band to ask a little bit more about their thrilling sound...


The band's debut album.


D: What are some of your main influences, it is often cited that the band shares similar vocals with that of Jim Morrison?
E: Undoubtedly we are influenced by the psych-rock legends from the late 60s-early 70s such Pink Floyd, The Doors and especially Black Sabbath. This was the first music that inspired us to play rock n' roll. But throughout our career we've picked up plenty of modern influences like Sleep, The Black Angels, Spiritualized and The Black Keys which are now equally as important to our sound.
D: The new record, Lowlands showed more focus than the first two albums, was there a conscious effort to find that Flying Eyes sound?
E: Whenever we start recording a record we want to make it better than the last one and the process of making Lowlands was definitely more focused and disciplined than ever before. But we didn't consciously think about "finding a sound". We always try to let the song writing naturally evolve without trying to push it in a specific direction. That's why are albums have a diverse feel to them.

D: What genre would you say your current records fall under?
E: Again, we don't really consider our own genre when we write music. We don't really want to to be defined in terms that might limit us. We definitely draw influences from shoegaze, doom metal and stoner rock but I think the best way to describe us, although it's broad, is "psychedelic rock". We always use psychedelic effects combined with driving rock beats.
D: You get a good variety of tones on your recordings, what are some of the pieces of gear you use when in the studio?
E: We used a variety of interesting vintage and modern amps on Lowlands: Fender Bassman, Fender Twin Reverb, Fender Concert Amp, Fender Super Sonic…as you can we are big Fender fans. Producer Rob Girardi also turned us on to some awesome effects he had in the studio: an Echoplex tape delay pedal, an old Fender spring reverb box which was perfect for warm guitar reverb. I also was given an 80s analogue synthesizer, the Prophet 600, which I restored and used on the record for some textural sounds.
D: After Lowlands, what can we expect from the Flying Eyes?
E: Over the past 3 or so years we've been slowly working on a different sort of album that we plan to release next. It’s mostly an acoustic album driven by acoustic guitars, banjos, minimal percussion and vocal harmonies. I play a lot of harmonica. If you listen to “Leave It All Behind” on our album Done So Wrong you’ll get an idea of what it sounds like. Country, folk, blues with some subtle hints of psychedelia. It’s very different but we are proud of it. We also have about 5 new songs written for the next electric album, but no concrete plans yet to start recording that one.

D: If you weren't musicians, what jobs would you be doing?
E: Well, we all have other jobs. Me and Mac work in the same divey Mexican restaurant/bar, Adam works at the Wegman’s sub shop and Will is a professional plumber. If I wasn't doing music I would probably be involved in some other performing art, most likely theatre. I studied theatre from a very young age through college and I’m still involved whenever I can be. But with The Flying Eyes being so busy over the last few years I hardly have any extra time. But whatever happens I'm sure I’ll always be performing on-stage in come capacity.
The Band's latest album, Lowlands.
You can buy The Flying Eyes latest album, Lowlands, here.

Interview conducted by Dan Sharman on 20:45, 06/08/2013.

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