Interview: Jordan Von Grae of BAD MOON BORN
Words/Interview by Suze Blacketer
Sydney alternative hard rockers Bad Moon Born are back! With a change to their sound that I was not expecting and an EP in the works I caught up with vocalist Jordan Von Grae for a chat!
I just read that you are #1 on the Triple J Unearthed charts! Congratulations.
Yes I woke up to that yesterday. We ar3e pretty blown away by it.
As you should be. The single was definitely not what I was expecting from you guys when I had it sent to me!
Yes it’s pretty different from the old stuff. A bit of a step in a new direction but we are very happy with it.
What bought the change of direction on?
We had a bit of a discussion towards the end of 2019 about what we kind of wanted to go with now that I have joined the band. The guys wanted to go in a more heavier direction. We were all listening to bands like Architects, Asking Alexandria and BMTH around that time so we thought we might give that a crack. We ended up spending th3e whole of 2020 diving into that genre and writing an EP around it. It quite naturally came into its own which is really good.
You guys are doing all your recording in-house?
Yeah. So Voya is essentially producing it all. He is absolutely amazing at it. He has been working quite hard at it for a while now and has his own setup at home. It makes things a lot easier for us as we are able to write and record whenever we want. It also cuts costs which is great.
That would have been helpful during Covid.
So who are the main writers now that you have moved into a different genre?
It’s mainly Voya and myself. Voya will come to the band with a song that is 70-80% fleshed out and then I will take that and work on some melodies and lyrics and take it back to him. Then we sit down and workshop it together until we get something that we are both happy with and fits in with what we are doing. The boys then come in and put all the bells and whistles on.
The Heart From The Hollow is your first single since the sound change.
It would have been one of the first songs we wrote for the EP. We started writing in about March or April 2020 when everything started shutting down. We had a little set up around Bankstown before Voya moved everything to his place and we just started writing there. Voya had this selection of riffs that were heavier than anything that we had ever done before and was keen to see what we thought. We were all pretty keen on the idea, so it sort of built from that. He arranged the song around it. I was sitting there wondering what I was going to do with it and came up with a couple of more percussive vocal ideas as opposed to the melodic stuff that everyone is used to. We were kind of vibing that a bit and so we built on it. Then it just became this completely other thing with really heavy vocals and guitars and quite modern production. It was really fun to write. The remainder of the EP kind of came from that. There’s a lot of more rocky stuff on the EP and then there is another track in a similar vein to The Heart From The Hollow. We demoed everything between April and July, wrote the lyrics in August/September and started recording in November. It’s good to finally get it all out because we have been sitting on it for a little while, but we wanted to make sure we were doing the genre justice.
At the end of the day if it’s something that you have written and you are happy with it, it doesn’t really matter where it sits, it’s your own creative story. I’m not a genre fan if you can’t tell!!!!
Absolutely and I think even within that genre there are so many different things happening at the moment. There is a lot to pull from, so we were definitely getting a lot more influences as the writing sessions went on.
Who does influence you? I know you said earlier Architects, BMTH and Asking Alexandria.
We’ve all got our own influences and tastes. In the grand scheme of things, in terms of the sound we are doing now, it would be a lot of those bands that started in the metalcore genre but are almost moving towards a heavy pop/rock kind of sound. That is what is sitting really naturally with us and it just so happens that we really like the music as well. So pulling a lot of influence from that but also listening to a lot of that dark pop stuff. We did that Billie Eilish cover which was a lot of fun. It’s had over 80,000 streams so we are pretty happy, the numbers keep climbing which is nice. We are finding that we are able to pull different melodies and production techniques from listening to that dark poppy stuff. And from listening to heavy stuff, I suppose you could say we are all rock kids. It’s quit3e an eclectic mix from everyone’s personal taste as well. Being able to bring in elements from all those different genres absolutely helps our song writing, while it is still in that metalcore vein I feel that there is still a lot of us in the songs.
So the EP? When is that coming?
Yes. We are going to release it as five consecutive singles as opposed to just dropping an EP. The idea is to release them 8-10weeks apart which will see us releasing music all year.
That is a good strategy to have seeing as we don’t know from one week to the next what is happening with lockdowns. Even organising EP release shows are risky at the moment.
Exactly. We have had a lot of cancellations and postponements.
We have just started to get a run of gigs here in Adelaide.
Our single launch the other week was the first gig I had played in over a year. Not playing for a year, and with all those Covid updates you think oh we might be able to play a show in a couple of weeks or in two months and then that just continuing on. That’s I guess what threw us into let’s just focus on writing an EP and making this the best we can possibly be. But yeah it was pretty surreal getting back onstage after that.
To finally have an audience to be able to play too must be amazing.
Absolutely it was.
I guess you won’t be touring for a bit.
We would like to. We are starting to look into the idea of touring and definitely a couple more shows in Sydney as launches for the singles. I think if we can get interstate without too much hassle I think we will look at doing it. A lot of people are really vibing the new stuff from the band so it would be great to be able to play in front of people again. No plans as of yet but we are keen for it. We were meant to be doing a national tour with Devilskin right now actually but that has been postponed.
The feedback has been good on the single?
It’s been great. A lot of people that we knew were big fans of the older stuff, more in the vein of the 90’s rock, have come forward and said they weren’t expecting that but are really digging it. It just hit #1 on the Triple J Unearthed metal chart which is great. The general consensus has been that people are really liking it. It wasn’t what they were expecting but they are blown away and are keen to hear more. We are pretty happy with that and I think that’s the important thing.
Keep an eye out for the next single. It will probably be out end of April/early May.
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