So Below - Sound In The Signals Interview

I recently had the opportunity to interview So Below. We discussed their new EP ‘Here and Heaven’, how their heavier roots impact the band, musical influences, lyrical inspiration, upcoming plans, and more. Check it out below. 

First, thanks for the interview.

Our pleasure! Thank you so much for reaching out to us. 

You recently released your new EP ‘Here and Heaven’. Can you tell me about writing and recording the EP?

Originally Sean and I (Marla) started this project between the two of us, writing and tracking literally everything at home from guitars to drums to vocals until we had rough demos to work off of. We found a couple friends to add to the official lineup and got to the studio in December to record everything for real. 

A lot of you are known from your other bands. So Below is a step in a new sonic direction. What made you want to write music like this? What’s your writing experience like when switching it up? 

We were just discussing the other day how, being the small state CT is, there’s a sort of sharing/overlapping of band members, often of all different genres. Each of us has been in several bands at this point (some still current,) a majority of which have been hardcore/metalcore adjacent — God Program, Wreckage, Balmora, Broken Vow, and Montclair, just to name a small fraction. I think for So Below I wanted to see if we could actually write something catchy, with melodies, and sonically more “mainstream” just as a challenge. You can only hear so many breakdowns, y'know…

Did having those heavy roots from your other projects have an impact on how you wrote the songs for this project? Why/why not? 

I think they did to be honest. We realized we still needed a song with some distortion, the drums go a little spastic at parts, and I still tried to layer some (really buried) screams under the clean vocals hahaha. We tried to dial it in, but maybe it’s for the best we keep a slight edge. 

One thing I really like about the EP is that it sounds new and fresh while also having nostalgic elements of Emo from the early 2000s. What were your sonic influences for the EP and your overall sound?

That’s a great compliment, thank you. Initially, my vision was “Let’s make a band that sounds like The Cranberries.” We soon discovered that to be virtually impossible. Actual inspirations turned out to be more in line with early Saddle Creek stuff, Rilo Kiley, Rainer Maria, The Sundays, even Red House Painters. 

I really like the song “Sincerely, Yours”. At what point in the writing process was that song written and what was the lyrical inspiration behind it?

It was the first song written! My process has always been to write lyrics after instruments; or at least tie together fragments, phrases, and concepts that I’ve been jotting down. “Sincerely, Yours” is simply about dependency. Unapologetic devotion, the notion that it might be harmful, and the reluctancy to release from it. I tried for this whole EP to have really straight-forward, transparent lyrics, which is completely unlike God Program or even poetry I write. 

Is there any chance that we’ll see a physical release such as CDs, cassettes, or vinyl for the EP?

Yes, there is a chance. It hasn’t been discussed in detail yet, but the possibility has been on the table. Not sure what direction we’ll take. 

What is coming up for you this year? Do you have plans to play some shows? Are you thinking ahead and/or planning new music? 

Shows are the goal for sure, but no dates planned at the moment. We will absolutely be working on new music ASAP and already have some ideas for the next release kicking around. It’s important for us to keep the momentum going.

Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions. Do you have anything else that you would like to add?

We wanted to give a special thanks to Chris Torok who mixed and mastered the EP at The Source Recording Studio in New Haven, CT, Corey for their invaluable mixing assistance, and Gabe Sciarra for initially recording both bass and 2nd guitar in-studio. Thank you so much again for the interview!

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