THE LAST NIGHT ORCHESTRA formed on one of the hills towering the Stockholm waters. Gabriel met Daniel’s girlfriend when they both were out walking their four legged friends. Eventually Daniel got involved in walking Gabriel’s dog and it soon stood clear they shared both living quarters and a passion for hardcore music. They started hanging out as neighbors and a few months later they tried their hands at playing guitar together. At first neither of them thought anything would come out of it, but after five minutes something happened and during the following hour they wrote the basis of their demo. They recorded the material on Gabriel’s computer and the friends soon realized they wanted to make something out of it. Gabriel instinctively thought of his childhood friend Erik, whom he knew as a formidable jazz/funk drummer. Erik liked the idea and set up a provisional drum recording session and recorded all the songs without even listening to them beforehand. As the result turned out amazing, bass and song was put to it. THE LAST NIGHT ORCHESTRA embraces their natural sounds and have without a doubt succeeded in creating something that does feel authentic and incredibly atmspheric in its own way while still holding true to some of their core influences.
We view this as mix of all our selves. Given that the process was very short and since we had a very small time window for editing, we interpret this as coming very close to being our pure emotions. We all add different merits and our list of inspiration is very diverse. We’ve called the music indie-postrock-like, but we’re not that hung up on definitions. This is a DIY-demo and we have plans on taking it to a studio in a nearby point in time.
Gabriel plays in a screamo-band called HEART ON MY SLEEVE and has a long array of bands and projects behind him, most prominent being EPHEMERA. Erik is a part of the pop-band HONEYMILK. Daniel comes from a punk background and creates electronic mischief under the name AFFECTIVE.
Hey there! What’s up? How’s summer treating you this year?
Gabriel: Hello Karol! I´m fine, I have had a really good summer. Bad weather, but a lot of relaxation and good times. Thank you for interviewing us!
Daniel: It has been pouring, both in rain and in inspiration! Our reaction to cold weather was to form a hot orchestra. I’m not that great at having nothing to do, so I talked Gabriel into playing guitar with me.
Cool, thanks so much for reaching out and presenting TLNO through IDIOTEQ! “The Last Night Orchestra” is probably one of the most underground and niche phrases in Google – this is safely one hell of a safely registered name. No lawsuit threatens you, that’s quite certain :) Tell me about the idea of this project and its mysterious name.
Gabriel: The project started like a jam. I meet Daniel my neighbour because of my four legged friend Willie (my dog). My girlfriend and I needed help walking Willie during the days and occasionally I had meet Daniel’s girlfriend who agreed to help us out. When his girlfriend couldn’t help us, she said that her boyfriend Daniel could walk Willie. After a lot of walks, my girlfriend and I felt that we needed to have a dinner to make up for all that they did for us. During that night me and Daniel found each other and got closer. We realized that we both liked hardcore music… The months passed by and we started hanging out more and more.
One day we decided to jam. It stared out just like a fun thing to do, but seriously, that jam lasted three hours and by then we had three songs finished on guitar. We both felt like; WOW this is insane and it has a cool personal sound.
Daniel: Initially Gabriel and I just thought the result of the jamming session was worth keeping for an EP, which lead us to asking Erik to record while he beat up a set of drums.
Gabriel: I contacted Erik, one of my best friends, whom also happen to be one of my favourite drummers. I told him about these songs and that I wanted him to record some drums on, with his personal touch on it. I didn’t want to ruin it by giving him instructions. I only told him to play after the feeling the songs gave him. When the summer action was over, both Erik and I went back to Stockholm, we directly recorded drums. The insane thing with this drum recording is that Erik never really listened to the songs or rehearsed to them beforehand, he just recorded part after part. Almost all takes are first take recordings.
Erik: Well, Gabriel and Daniel told me they had written a couple of songs on two guitars and that they had put on tape. They simply wanted me to improvise some drums to capture the nice energy of the first take on each song. So that was basically the way of working from my point of view. I’ve always been a drummer that likes to improvise to keep my creativity going. The session was very intense and it ended up being quite energetic. I really enjoyed working with these guys. The next step would be to get together and produce a studio recording of these tracks or a couple of fresh ones.
Our creative chemistry obviously works, since we did this demo in just a few days.
I wonder what will happen when we get the opportunity to write more together.
Daniel: As Erik’s part turned out magnificent, the inspiration grew. We asked around for others to join, but grew a bit impatient and ended up recording bass and vocals ourselves.
Gabriel: The name was like a last minute decision in desperate times. We set a deadline to come up with a name. All songs were finished for upload, but we had no name. So we decided that we only had a day to figure it out. We started to texting from 09:00 in the morning to like 22:30 in the evening. A lot of names were on the wall, stuff like, The paperclip club and other embarrassing names, hahahahaha. When I finally gave up, my eyes fell on my video collection. I saw one of my favourite movies (Last night). It’s a movie about unfaithfulness. I thought I needed something more and for me we feel like an orchestra of emotions. So that combo felt good and the abbreviation TLNO also looked nice.
Daniel: The meaning differs from each member, but that in itself represents our take on music in a satisfactory manner. My personal interpretation is that our orchestra is an outlet for our experiences and emotions, which we forge into musical pieces. Last night’s issues – great songs… I’m glad if we affect people in a positive way and their representations are as good as ours.
Some artists do change their styles fairly radically or try their strengths in new subgenres or niches. Do you like to start in such a tabula-rasa way? How come you ended up playing so mellow, indie, emotive, shoegazin’ tunes?
Daniel: I’ve loved similar kinds of music since childhood. Even though I started out playing punk mainly, genres like indie, post-rock, britpop and garage-rock has always played an important role in my creative expression. This is the first time I’ve found someone who dares to pull it out of me.
Gabriel: Our jam determined the sound, we hadn’t talk about witch type of music we would do. For me it was fun not to create screamo music. I wanted to do something with more regular song because I already play in HEART ON MY SLEEVE and recently did the EPHEMERA release, which both are screamo. My parents has always said that my music is wonderful, but has at the same time always asked why the singer need to scream, so they are really happy now. *Laughs*
Could you share how your musicianship and experience with composing began in the first place? Also, how did your offerings evolve into this new project?
Daniel: I started out as an angry kid with a lot of attitude and emotion some 23 years ago. I have written music ever since and probably always will. My friends in second grade had a band and they asked me to play saxophone in it and later it turned into bass and guitar. The last five years I’ve mainly been dabbling with electronic music on my computer and I have also composed some singer-songwriter-tunes. I guess my contribution to TLNO is melody on guitar and vocals.
What was the writing production process like behind your debut EP?
Daniel: We sat down at home with two guitars, tried some chords and a couple of melodies. Three hours later we recorded some of it. We sort of felt right away that there was good chemistry between us. I thought it would end there since both Gabriel and I went on separate vacation trips for a couple of weeks, but Gabriel (being the networking-monster that he is) came back with Erik, who had agreed to record drums for it. The day after their return we borrowed a few drum mics and rigged for the recording. I had during this time written lyrics for one of the songs and I recorded it in my living room.
Gabriel: For us it’s a demo. We recorded and mixed and mastered everything ourselves. It all happened insanely fast. We did the guitars in three hours, the drums in a day. If you would have timed it from when we started to jam to the final mastered version, everything would have been done in like four days’ time.
Is there a plan to collaborate with some labels to release this record physically?
Gabriel: We did this for fun and haven’t planned to release it in any other form than a digital Bandcamp-version, but maybe we will change our minds.
Daniel: I’d love to at least re-record the songs and hopefully a couple of new ones in a better studio. I hope someone will be as enthusiastic about this as we are. Actually we’ve already stirred up some attention from a Japanese band who wanted to make a split EP with us. Such offers are always flattering, but if we’ll do, it will probably be done on our own.
We’ve discussed the eventuality of involvement from record labels and agreed that that would make the process a lot easier, being we all live busy lives and have other commitments which all demand attention. There are families, jobs, bands and studies whom we love and respect. The music will remain weather or not someone thinks we’ll be profitable or not.
Ok guys, let’s drop a couple of lines about your local music scene? What is the indie and punk scene like in Stockholm now and how has it influenced your music?
Daniel: We have the good old Kafé 44, which harbors all types of sub genres! “Everybody can join in. Everybody gets to play”. As they also serve one of the best vegan meals in the city, it’s my go to place. Otherwise I’m more into my friend’s acts which span from baroque harp to playing harmonica as street performers.
Gabriel: The punk/hardcore/screamo scene is really good in Stockholm. When it comes to indie bands I don’t really now, because this is a new genre for me. *Laughs*
Apart from other musicians and their art, where do you seek and find inspiration to create?
Gabriel: I find inspiration in playing music like I always do, most often in Heart on my sleeve. Daniels melodic guitars and singing gives it more of a indieisch/popisch feeling. I haven’t had in mind to play in any other way. Every member contributes with their own qualities, which make up our sound.
Daniel: My girlfriend, my dog and my friends. Actually also in feelings of despair and anxiety, feeling like shit makes me very creative or at least it gives me material to write about. I used to write strictly political and even though my ideals have stayed the same, I no longer have the same drive to pursue the same goals I did fifteen years ago. Inequality and injustice still gets me going, but instead I try to make use of my personal experiences in the hope that someone will listen and relate. When I feel really bad I find it nice to listen to music being able to express that feeling. I read a lot and that tends to spark a few ideas. I love literature references and there‘s a couple in the demo.
Where do you see your art fitting into society?
Daniel: In speakers and headphones… Everywhere, I don’t want to discriminate on listeners and I certainly don’t care to be fitted into a mould. I’ve tried to convince everybody that it would be cool if we could find an anime series that could use our music as their score. Otherwise clubs, the concrete jungle, in the subway, ferries, parties, hostels, cafés and at home…
Gabriel: I know that Daniel writes very deep shit, so for those who like to listen to it and can understand his lyrics, that type of society ;)
:) Ok guys, so what are your next steps? Can we catch you live somewhere in the coming months?
Daniel: Hopefully you can. Since this is a new thing for everybody we have to find people to play all the instruments. As soon as this fall is my wish, but I guess it depends on every member’s commitment to other engagements and how soon we’ll be able to complete our EP.
Gabriel: At the moment we are writing some more songs that will be recorded for our EP with five or six songs. Hopefully we will have a gig really soon!?!
Thanks so much for your time and the introduction! The last words are yours. Cheers!
Gabriel: Thanks a lot Karol! I love what you do and how you help bands around the world. All love to you!
Daniel: Love is all.
Lovely :) Thanks and take care!