Nightjacket (Interview)

Nightjacket_061415-467Nightjacket releases their debut EP, Eternal Phase, tomorrow (June 23rd) which includes the swaying dream pop single “It’s Alright”:

So Free Bike Valet and photographer Jessica Chanen met the band in Beachwood Canyon to shoot some pics and ask guitarist Jordan Wiggins some questions.

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You met frontwoman Holland Belle when she performed at a backyard party in Atwater Village. What made you want to collaborate with her?

“Holland was singing some of her songs solo on an electric guitar and her voice and presence just struck me. Come to find out later that she’s classically trained –she used to sing opera all across Europe– which makes complete sense but I didn’t know when I first heard her. It was great timing though, because I was writing these dark, dreamy pop songs. As I continued to develop new songs I think I had her voice in mind –consciously or not. The next time we ran into each other I asked her if she wanted to collaborate and I sent her a couple demos. We started working on new songs every couple weeks and eventually the record came out of our favorite songs from those sessions. That’s how Nightjacket was born.”

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How did you recruit the rest of your lineup?

“[Bassist] Steve Lucarelli, [guitarist] Louie Schultz, and [drummer] Diego Guerrero were all friends of ours already. Luckily it’s worked out that they dug the music and wanted to join. Steve actually played some bass parts on the record but was in another band at the time so I didn’t know if he’d be able to join. But it’s worked out.”
Is the band’s moniker an intended reference to the band’s sonic ambience?

“Yeah. We’ve always thought of the music as having a lot of nocturnal imagery and most of the songs or key melodies were written at night. The origins of the name though grew out of a term I’d been using since I moved from the hot summer nights of Virginia to the cooler nights of Los Angeles. I couldn’t get over how, even on a hot day here, you knew you’d still need to bring a jacket for the evening. Nightjacket was the term and it seemed like a good fit for the music as well.”

Where does the title of your debut EP, Eternal Phase, come from?

“‘Eternal Phase’ is the title of the fourth track on the EP and it’s kind of the climax of the record if you will. I guess at its core the song is about time and growing up and how things seem to flash by and change without you noticing at first. It’s kind of a reminder –perhaps to myself especially– to take the time to appreciate things while they’re here. Near the end of the song you can faintly hear the backing vocal singing ‘You’ve got the time.’ Also, the initials of Eternal Phase are EP so there was really only one logical choice regarding what to name the EP.”

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What do all the songs on your EP all have in common?
“The strongest commonality between the songs on the EP –other than the stylistic similarities– is that they all convey an honest feeling or emotion. I think that’s why we write songs: to convey something that we might not otherwise be able to convey and those things come through to the listener if they’re done right.”
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Do you have plans for an full-length?

“Yeah. We’re writing for our next release and we’re playing one of the songs out live already. We’ve got some dream producers in mind but who knows. Maybe we’ll do it ourselves again as we did with this one? We’re aiming to have a full album ready to release around spring of next year.”

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