INTERVIEW: Strings of Atlas

How would you classify your music?

Officially, I would classify it as Hard Rock with a punk rock edge. Unofficially, I like to think of it as sounding like Royal Blood, Clutch and Monster Magnet jamming together in a grungy whiskey bar.

Who are some of your top 5 musical influences?

My music career started way back in highschool, playing in a metal band that was heavily influenced by Fear Factory and Six Feet Under. It was a ton of fun and no one knew what to make of it. As my musical tastes expanded and I started Strings of Atlas, bands like Audioslave, Monster Magnet and Clutch were what made a huge impact on the direction that project was going. I have always loved heavy, groovy sounds. I have influences from so many genres but my heart is in rock in roll.

What do you want fans to take from your music?

SOA has always been about facing the hardships in life and getting through it, in the most rock and roll way possible. Songs like “Find A Way” and “So Far From Home” are about being out on your own and not letting things like depression or poverty keep you from doing something great in your life. The entire “In A Better World” album was a mix of satire and introspection, with tracks like “In A Better World” touching on the division we face as people and the idea that hard times are not all times, that things will get better. I want every person who listens to SOA, to feel the music, to feel like whatever it is they are facing, they are not the first and they are not alone.

How’s the music scene in your locale?

The music scene in Austin is great! There are so many talented people out here, all involved in a wide range of genres. You can pretty much find a live show every night of the week. The only downside is that there are so many musicians and so few opportunities to make a living as one. But the city is definitely working on creating a better place for working artists with grant programs and helping find health insurance.

What is the best concert you have been to? What do you like most about playing live?

The best concert I have been to…that’s a tough one. GWAR probably put on the most visually entertaining show I’ve ever been to. Pretty Lights is another great visual group that always amazes me. And I love the energy of Tech n9ne and his crew a lot as well! What I like most about playing live is getting an audience that is so into what you’re doing, it’s like hanging out with your friends. You can point people out, talk to them, ask them to come sing a song with you or dance on stage and it’s a show that you know they are going to tell people about later.

Is there a song on your latest CD release here that stands out as your personal favorite, and why?

So the new EP comes out in April with the single “How Far We’ve Come” dropping in March. That track was by far my favorite to write and record. It feels like such a huge track musically, the kind of stuff you can imagine playing in a stadium full of swaying people. It’s another one of those tracks where you take a look back at your life, at a point where you think you’ve gotten nowhere and realise just how far you really have come.

How have you evolved as an artist over the last year?

Really, my biggest evolution from this past year is becoming more involved in the business side of music and taking charge of the direction my career is going. For so long I have been on the train of, keep playing live, keep writing and good things will happen. But I have realized just how much more there is to it then that. And one of the best things to come from this, is that I am learning how to help others grow their music careers, learning things like copyrights, licensing, running ads and reaching people who want to hear you that are miles away. My indie label “Sky Titian Media” is  my biggest evolution of this past year.

If you could meet, play a gig, co-write a song, have dinner, have a drink with any band or artist (dead or alive) who would it be?

That is a tossup between Chris Cornell (Audioslave) and Dave Wyndorf(Monster Magnet). They just seem like the coolest guys you could ever jam with.

10. What’s next for you? 

SOA has the new EP coming out. Sky Titan Media has two other projects this year, from Chords Of Eve (Pop/Trip Hop) and Sike O. Phenix (Hip Hop/instrumentals) and we are already planning a few community gigs, to help out other musicians and those wanting to become musicians. 2020 is going to be a big year for us.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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