This week, I interviewed my friend Amber Sebastian, Soundless’ lead singer, about her band.
AM: How and when did Soundless become a band?
AS: Sara and I started playing together as a punk rock duo a few years ago (2011 I think). We played only one show at Nottingham Co-op, to a handful of co-opers, plugged into a single shitty amp (yet somehow we managed to get featured with a full page article in the Isthmus — which was totally bizarre)… We are lucky fools. Later Sara & I met a guitarist named Pedro at the Brocach open mic, who introduced us to Dan and Ben. We all played as a 5 piece for a short time (called “Serac”), until Pedro moved back to Portugal and the 4 of us carried on as Soundless.
AM: How did you choose the name?
AS: Being psychology nerds, we played a game of random association (wherein we sat around while one person speaks aloud whatever words pop into mind one after another, without any filter)… It was mostly just a hilarious game. We blathered on this way until we generated list of potential names. And that basically sums up the Soundless naming ceremony.
AM: Which musicians/bands were Soundless’ biggest influences?
AS: Well, each member has different musical influences, so it’s a mishmash of everybody’s musical tastes. I’d say we took some inspiration from post-rock bands like Mogwai, Explosions in the Sky,.. harmonies inspired by Low, the Cranberries… and so on. Since Sara and Dan have been the main songwriters, they’d be the ones to ask. As Dan mentioned in an interview with RAW at one of our first shows, the process of making music is most strongly influenced by whatever is going on in the moment. It’s intuitive.
AM: Which venues did Soundless enjoy performing at the most and why?
AS: We’ve played the Frequency, High Noon, Mickeys, Segredos, Dragonfly, Nottingham Co-op, and basement shows. My favorite venues have been the High Noon Saloon (the acoustics are amazing — like playing in an enormous cave!) and the Dragonfly Lounge (they have such a beautiful space in an old cathedral-style basement, which is home to an awesome underground music scene. Great folks, great shows, excellent vibes).
AM: Why is your band parting ways?
AS: Well, as they say: all things must pass 🙂 Sara (our drummer and close friend) is off to LA to give music a shot and see what the big city has to offer. She and her partner play in a fantastic duo called “Lion’s Mouth” (go check them out!) Parting ways is sad, but that’s life. We’ve made some awesome music over the past few years, and each of us have grown tremendously as musicians (and as people) throughout Soundless’ run. It’s the end of a band, but it’s certainly not the end of playing music!
AM: How will the members of Soundless continue to be involved in music?
AS: Dan will continue on with Tyranny is Tyranny (intensely intricate, dynamic, noise-rock based in Madison) — they’re working on their second album right now. He also plans on practicing more cello and trumpet. Sara will be rocking with Lions Mouth in Los Angeles. I haven’t asked Ben what his plans are, but I’m sure the three of us will continue to jam sometimes! As for me… I plan to brush up on my guitar skills this winter. I’m definitely interested in collaborating with other local musicians, and exploring different genres… hopefully forming a new project at some point. What that will look and sound like, only time will tell… 🙂