Interviews

THOSE CITY LIGHTS interview

On March 12, 2012 we had a chance to talk to THOSE CITY LIGHTS, an ambient instrumental post rock duo that recently signed to Rogue Records America.

The band is currently working on a score for the up and coming game Townseed.

Hey, pleasure to have you here. How are you? Please, introduce the band and its music to our readers.

David:

Hey, thanks, glad to be here. I’m good, you? I‘m David, one half of THOSE CITY LIGHTS, a project that aims to combine ambient soundscapes with orchestral and progressive rock elements – hopefully the result is something a little different, a little new.

Mark:

Yeah I’m good ta, I’m Mark, t’other half of THOSE CITY LIGHTS, like David said, we are definitely something new, personally I’ trying to convey emotion as I believe music these days lacks it. ALOT. If you haven’t checked us out yet, please do, you wont be disappointed.

Cool, we’re all good then. Gentlemen, you are releasing your debut EP entitled “Absconding Reality” on May 15. How are the preparations? Share some secrets with us and tell us what can we expect.

David:

Things are going well! Since we both have university work to contend with as well there are slow periods and our time’s a little constrained, but despite this we’re making great strides.

Mark:

Here’s a little secret for you.. its mainly improvised, you can expect to be sent on a massive musical and emotional journey for sure!

How did you decide to create instrumental music?

David:

Because neither of us can sing…seriously. But apart from that, we both felt that the kind of music we create doesn’t lend itself to vocals – though who knows, we may employ them in the future.

Mark:

I’ve always been a fan of instrumental music, mainly classical stuff, I just wanted to put a spin on what i enjoy and create something brand new, which I believe we are doing.

Congratulations on signing with Rogue Records America. Lots of metal [laughs]. How did you land with THOSE CITY LIGHTS in their roster?

David:

They approached us at the end of 2011; I think (as we hope others will) they recognized that it was something unique amidst a sea of pretty indistinguishable acts – and it’s a style that works well in game enviroments, which is an industry they have pretty strong ties with.

Mark:

Rogue Records have strong ties with the gaming industry which our music does lend it self to for sure! but like David said, they approached us in 2011 and I guess thought we were something unique.

The label focuses on digital distribution. How do you plan to distribute your music? Are there any physical formats involved?

David:

One thing we’ve noticed particularly with our fanbase is that they’re pretty keen on the idea of a physical release. So yeah, we’ll definitely be releasing some physical copies, though we expect them to be limited.

Mark:

Extreamly limited (pre-orders will be available soon). I would love to release it on vinyl but this isn’t financially do-able for us JUST yet.

How do you create those ambient textures and soundscapes? What gear do you use? Please tell us a bit about your writing process.

David:

My main bit of gear is a custom PC; 2TB of VSTs and sample libraries, 32GB RAM and a new i7 processor…it handles a lot. With this upcoming EP the majority of the songs were improvised – that is, we started with maybe one melody or a beat and then gradually built it up, often recording entire sections in a single take and only editing it slightly afterwards. With future releases we plan to take more time to actually sit down and write.

Mark:

My main machine is a custom built PC: 2tb HDD, 16GB RAM and a AMD 6core CPU, I run cubase and reaper, people ask me why I do this.. mainly because theyre both great for diffrent things. I use a POD XT pro processing unit to record gutairs. In the EP thus far I have a customized ibanez RG370DX with really knackerd stock pickups, they just give a beautiful warm feeling, ive had to re-solder them many a times, and my main instrument at the moment is a Schechter hellrasier tempest. I’m currently waiting for my Custom Fan Fret 8 string to be complete from the amazing Invictus Guitars UK, quality hand crafted instruments from these guys! (check them out www.facebook.com/invictusguitars)

What about live shows? How many have you played so far? When and where will we be able to see you guys live?

David:

We haven’t played any live shows as of yet – our primary concern was building a fanbase and working on a first release. However, we do have plans to play shows, hopefully very soon, and we’ll post dates and venues on our facebook page when we know for sure, so make sure to check it.

Mark:

Not one. like David said, Due to our style of music we cant afford to hire out a string quartet for a tour, so the CD must be complete with live shows soon following. But we have been in talks with the label and have some pretty interesting ideas knocking about, cannot wait for them to come into fruition.

Are there any festivals you’d like to play? What kinds of events is your music suitable for?

Mark:

Play ALL the festivals! theres no festival in particular I wouldn’t want to play! Would really love to find some querky festivals out there! our musics good to just chillout to! any major festival with a great lightshow, to a small intimate venue at a coffee shop or a huge theatre with an orchestra (this would be my dream) although everyone that does come to a show will receive a free 3 track CD of our first single releases.

Tell us more about your collaboration with the Sophie Lancaster Foundation and the “Requiem” video itself. Who’s Sophie?

 Mark:

Sophie was a friend of mine who I lost tragically, she was murdered for the way she dressed. I’m always up for helping to raise money for great charities so with permission we used a Video the foundation had put out a few years ago as a music video to try and spread the name about for the Sophie Lancaster foundation, You can purchase the charity single here for 50p (or more), 100% of sales go directly to the charity.


How come there is so much prejudice against alterity, especially in the UK I think?

David:

That’s not a question I can easily answer. I will say though that I don’t think the UK is any worse than say, the US, but either way… it’s really despicable.

We asked HEAVEN SHALL BURN this question, but I’m really interested what do you think about London riots last year. Do you think this has anything to do with the widening migration crisis and growing resentment towards the immigrants spreading across Europe?

David:

404 ANSWER NOT FOUND.

Mark:

Pathetic, no reason for such bullshit.


Thank you. We wish you all the best for this year. Hope the EP will knock people out. Feel free to tell our readers anything you want.

David:

Cheers. Hopefully this has been somewhat informative, and we hope people enjoy the music we’re creating. Take care.

Mark:

Thanks a bunch for having us, Be sure to pick up a copy of our EP ‘Absconding Reality’ Due out May 15 2012 via Rogue Records America, availble on itunes, and all good online retailers world wide, physical copies available from us at www.facebook.com/citylightsmusic. Be sure to go give us a ‘Like’! Be sure to check out Rogue Records, Origami Ghost Clothing and Invictus Guitars out as well.

/em

Hey, thanks, glad to be here. I’m good, you? I‘m David, one half of THOSE CITY LIGHTS, a project that aims to combine ambient soundscapes with orchestral and progressive rock elements – hopefully the result is something a little different, a little new.

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