Venomous - Interview
With their debut album Preserved Emergencies tucked safely under their belts and a second already in the works,Pennsylvanian band Venomous should be by today's standards and by all means a lot more then just the talk of their small local home town of West Chester. But trying to find anything out about Venomous is virtually impossible, even to those who are "In the know". The few Interviews and Reviews that actually exist out there have meant that the band's name has only spread on... (continued)
With their debut album Preserved Emergencies tucked safely under their belts and a second already in the works,Pennsylvanian band Venomous should be by today's standards and by all means a lot more then just the talk of their small local home town of West Chester. But trying to find anything out about Venomous is virtually impossible, even to those who are "In the know". The few Interviews and Reviews that actually exist out there have meant that the band's name has only spread on the scene through word of mouth and consequently become somewhat recluse, hindering the exposure that they truly deserve, which really is a shame.Making the best out of their situation;one which shall soon turn into a past down tale of when things were just starting out,Venomous has focused on building enough buzz around their electrically charged music through local shows for people to want to listen and to learn more about them. Their music has featured on TV shows and Independent Movies and with euphoric front man Chris Aspite paving the way for his band,Venomous has slowly begun coiling around the industry, starving itself for that one victorious feast! Venomous front man Chris Aspite took some time out from recording the bands second album to talk to us here at The405. Check it out! Just for our readers at home, can you tell us who you are, where you're from and how and when the band got together? My name is Chris Aspite (As-pit-ay). I'm from West Chester, Pennsylvania. The band originated after a friend heard a few demo's I made and encouraged me to start a band - but I didn't know how. He got me going and with the blink of an eye Venomous was born. Something like that...but not really. Did you have any initial aims with regards to the sound you wanted to create or their content when you formed the band? I guess in a way the idea was to be versatile, but not for show, really for our own interest level. There was always the idea of making music that could have a bit of an edge, but that could also be beautiful at times. Even the more mellow songs have something a little off about them, by way of an arrangement or a lyric. There have been moments in practice when it's just like, "that's really good, but it's too good. Mess that up a little." Of course these are not groundbreaking ideas, but I think music is more interesting that way. It's like: it's OK to be gleeful, but it can be even more fun if the elation borderlines madness. Venomous is definitely a very unique and rather direct band name that in my opinion really stands out,partially because of the connotations and imagery that the word surrounds and invokes. I did however read that the name is somewhat "tongue-and-cheek" and that none of you share a love for snakes or spiders, which is surprising. Where did the creation of the name Venomous originate from? I don't remember exactly, but in the beginning there was every intention of changing it, but then we were asked to open for two pretty big shows and the name stuck. I guess I thought it had a "psych" element to it like The Zombies, or something cool and mysterious like the Velvet Underground somehow. It's kind of a funny name to me for some reason, kind of impish. Maybe because we're not really mean or anything - pretty nice people. Maybe just a little wicked. ;) Where or form whom do you draw your inspirations when writing new lyrics and music? It can come from anywhere, I guess: a snippet of a conversation, movies, a sound you hear on the street, a color you see that excites you - other music of course. Different environments can spark things off. Never too straight forward for me...and the ideas seem to shift and lean to places I don't always expect. Not to say that i never have a specific notion to convey or a specific feeling, but the process is better when it's less expository - keeping the boundaries open is sometimes better. But the music can ground everything and provide an environment, so things don't get out of hand. Chris, not so long ago i had the pleasure of interviewing photographer Ryan Gee and much like yourself he too shares routes in skateboarding. Would you say that, like Ryan, who's work has somewhat evolved from his love of skateboarding, that the band could be seen as a form of your own natural progression as a skateboarder, making music for people to skate to? Ahh, Mr. Gee. A good man. Well, I think something that correlates is the need to progress and remain creative, and to be challenged and to grow. Your mindset is different when you view normal objects in everyday life as obstacles that can have another purpose entirely from the intended one. You don't walk down stairs - you fly over them. I guess that lends to the idea of the band having to not be one specific way - we can have a name like Venomous, but play an almost pastoral song like "Calm." There is a sense of possibility. Besides skateboarding how long have you been playing music for? Are there any other vocalists that you admire? I've been playing music for around 7 years. Been in a band for 3. As far as vocalists, I admire so many and would probably give a different answer tomorrow. But I think Harriet Wheeler of the Sundays has an amazing voice, and Bernard Sumner of New Order has such a cool singing style; it can be so plaintive and pure. That kind of delivery can be heartbreaking or powerful depending on the lyric. Are there any plans to make a music video now that "Preserved Emergencies" has been released? Yes, there are always plans. LOL. But, I really have started to talk with someone about getting started soon. I can't believe we haven't yet. Maybe "Perimeter" will be first. Something that I really admire about the band is your ability to deliver sounds from both ends of the spectrum. Tracks like "Tech One", "Calm" and "Look Up" provide an atmospheric sense of floating out in space, where as with "Night Lite" and "Shook" that really mix it up, you feel like your ears are on fire! Do you think that its important to be diverse in your music and keep evolving your sound rather then focusing on one particular element and style. Thank you. Yeah, that definitely goes back to the challenge of being creative with the styles of music. "Nite Lite" is very punk, but then there are chimes in it too! The songs sound different, but I think there's a sentiment that somehow threads them together. I think more bands are doing that now, which is very exciting. If you could tour with any band or musician from the past or present who would it be and why? This is another one that would probably change daily, but right now: LCD Soundsystem, because they seem fun and probably play cool parties on island beaches. The Black Angels, because they seem cool as hell. Santogold for both previous reasons. All because they make really good music. And finally, where do you hope to see the band in 3 years time, in terms of doing new projects (e.g side projects) and any other personal aspirations you each have in life? I would hope that in 3 years we have finished another record or two...and not had the problems we've had getting them heard like this first one. Getting a chance to make a record and play with great people was a big aspiration, so I feel very lucky. Be sure to checkout more from Venomous by checking out their Official MySpace here and their Official Website here A special thanks to Chris Aspite for making this interview possible.