Some Go Haunting
PR1. Can you tell what the band name Some Go Haunting means? Did you choose it or Aria? Does it have to do with an interest in horror or the supernatural?
SGH. Aria came up with Some Go Haunting while reading a book about life after death. It doesn’t have anything to do with an interest in horror or the supernatural per se. Our songs, lyrically and musically, cover the whole spectrum of human experiences, from light to dark. And we feel the name is ambiguous enough to give us room to try anything that interests us lyrically or musically.
PR2. How did you and Aria come together as a band? Is being a duo different than maybe being in a full band situation you both may have been in before?
SGH. A mutual friend initially introduced us. We started out as a four-piece band and released a self-titled EP and video. But as we continued working together we gradually realized that we enjoyed the process of making music with each other more so than with our other band mates. So over the course of a couple of years it turned into a two-piece. After we made the decision to carry on just the two of us we decided to go back to the drawing board and write new music together. And we spent over a year figuring out our song ideas and eventually recorded them. This new collection of songs that we have recorded has really helped to define our sound, more so than anything that we’ve done before.
From a practical standpoint, being a duo is so much easier in terms of getting things done. To put it simply, we’re drama-free and we work really well together. And this makes the whole process of being in a band a much more fun and productive experience. It was quite a challenge to figure out how to play our new songs, which have lush arrangements on our recordings, with just the two of us live. But we feel like what we are able to produce in our live show, although a bit different than our recordings, is still a great representation of our sound. In fact, playing live as a duo has helped us define ourselves even more clearly.
PR3. How do you feel you and Aria connect creatively as well as musically?
SGH. First off, we are really great friends. And we both have a tremendous amount of respect for one another as artists. That mutual respect is at the heart of what we create together. We have a lot of trust in each other and often times we communicate telepathically when writing or recording. On the flip side, while we have a lot of similar musical influences we also have some that are quite different. And we’ll often surprise each other with unique ideas that we wouldn’t have come up with on our own. That’s really one of the best things about collaboration.
PR4. What are both of your inspirations for songwriting and writing lyrics what influences or draws you to certain topics?
SGH. For Aria, in terms of writing lyrics, books are a big source of inspiration. She keeps a lot of journals where she’ll jot down lyric ideas and uses the journals as a map to come up with lyrics when we’re writing songs. Other times lyric ideas will just sort of “beam in” from the ether.
For song writing we both listen to a lot of music, everything from classical to hip-hop to electronica. And we’re constantly playing our instruments and writing music. Both of those things are a big source of inspiration for us and help us to generate our ideas.
PR5. Jason, you mentioned you come from an art background. Can you tell me more about it? How did you came up with artwork for the band in terms of image and materials? Can you tell me more of the concept around "The House of Arcadia" video. It seems like there is a lot going on with visuals historically and with the environment. Do you think it connects with song lyrically or is it more abstract?
SGH. I studied visual arts in high school and college. And part of my studies included field recording and sound art. Those experiences really helped to sharpen my ideas around using musical textures and creating soundscapes. And it also has had a great influence on the band’s visuals.
In terms of the band artwork we have an amazing artist, Dani Vinokurov, that has helped us with all aspects of our artwork, from photography, to album art, to gig posters. And she also helped us with the design and animation for our stop-motion video for “House of Arcadia”.
For “House of Arcadia” Aria initially came up with a broad visual theme centered on the ocean and dancing fish. We took that concept and wanted to use it to tell a narrative. The main fish in the video starts off in black and white. After going on a journey and being pulled in different directions eventually the fish finds its sense of belonging and turns into full color. It’s a reflection on human nature in terms of going through life reaching and searching and only being able realize our full selves after connecting with the people that mean the most to us.
PR6. I read you got "House of Arcadia" played on the radio. Do you feel it is one if the band's strongest songs to date and that's why you released it on iTunes?
SGH. “House of Arcadia” is a really clear representation of our current sound as a band. It captures feelings ranging from melancholy to triumph and sums up where we are musically; it has a mixture of acoustic and electronic sounds and is quiet and contemplative yet danceable.
PR7. What's next for Some Go Haunting? Do you have a career strategy? Do you want to get management or a record deal?
SGH. For the duration of 2014 we’ll be playing shows in the Los Angeles area. We also have a full-length record completed that we’ll release later on this year. Leading up to the album release we’re going to put out a few more singles and music videos as well.
In addition, two of our new songs have been placed in two feature films that will be released in the near future. And we are also in talks to possibly score a feature length movie.
We have a “grab the bull by the horns” approach to our career. We book our own shows, record in our tiny studio and do our own promotion. While we are open to having help in terms of management or a record label behind us there is so much that you can do on your own these days. And it’s really important to us to be proactive and not just sit around waiting for things to happen.
Some Go Haunting is inspiring for greatness trying to craft songs that are often grand, majestic, epic in their soundscapes and in scale but only one of the eight songs they performed at recent show at Hotel Cafe came close to reaching that lofty ambition: House of Arcadia. Intriguing, mysterious and oblique with its moody arrangement, it was hard to understand what the number was about lyrically. But the accompanying video for the song, which is imaginative and thought provoking, juxtaposes historical symbols and the environment with fish swimming against this backdrop can confuse one even more. Yet at the same time, it peaks your interest and the song grows on you with repeated listening.
Akin to the excitement one would feel hearing a classic Coldplay or Smashing Pumpkins song with their ambient sound and musical theatrics. Pullman is a wonderful vocalist with an expansive range that belies her girlish, coquettish style somewhat in the vein of The Cocteau Twins but with her own unique, controlled assertive twist. Lead guitarist Jason Rivera on backing vocals, keyboards and programming pulled the overall arrangements together adding depth, dimension, harmonics and color. However, the art rock leanings of Some Go Haunting seemed to work to great effect on "House of Arcadia." Unfortunately, "Mia" was left off the set list and can be luckily found on the band's ReverbNation page.
As for the rest of the material, including an out-of-left field 1950s-inspired number called "Oh Johnny" that was rather generic and pedestrian didn't fit within the framework or context of the other material and an ordinary relationship song called "Me and You," the songs in general weren't original or special enough to stand out. Rivera and Pullman gave a powerful live performance showcasing their abilities and talents as musicians that saved the set from completely disappearing from the consciousness of the audience.