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Interview: Ocean Mind

vom 17. Januar 2013
Versetzen wir uns zurück in eine Zeit, in der die Musik noch eine Relevanz besaߟ, welche Menschen im täglichen Leben zu beeinflussen und zu führen vermochte. Musik war damals etwas Besonderes und nicht alltäglich oder einfach per Knopfdruck verfügbar. Wenn man eine Band hören wollte, ging man zu ihren Konzerten, aber nicht auf irgendwelche kleinen YouTube-Videos mit ihrer meistens doch leider minderwertigen Qualität. Und genau diese Relevanz besitzt heute auch die Mucke des griechischen Stoner-Rock-Trios Ocean Mind, das in den letzten Dezembertagen noch schnell - heimlich, still, und leise - ihren zweiten, wirklich grandiosen Longplayer mit dem Titel "2 Ready 2 Live" veröffentlicht hat. Ein ausführliches Review dazu findet ihr hier.
Das Album strotzt nur so vor warmen Hammond-Sounds, donnernden Drums, coolen Schweinerock-Gitarren und 70s-Rock-Einflüssen á la Doors, Mountain oder Black Sabbath. Speziell zu Ersteren finden sich immer wieder Reminiszenzen über das ganzen Album verstreut. Unter Mithilfe von Lee Popa (u.a. bekannt für seine Zusammenarbeit mit Tool, Ministry, Korn, White Zombie) entstand dieses monumentale Werk in Kalifornien, das von der ersten bis zur letzten Minuten kaum Langeweile aufkommen lässt. Für uns Grund genug, die Herren zum Interview zu bitten und ihnen gepflegt auf den Zahn zu fühlen. Dabei erfahren wir die Ursache der vielen Doors-Zitate, was sich bei Lee Popa in Kalifornien abgespielt hat, ob wir sie jetzt nun endlich doch mal live zu Gesicht bekommen könnten und was es mit der "2" anstelle des Wortes "to" auf sich hat. Mehr im unten stehenden Interview!
Viel Spaß beim Lesen!

The Interview:

Michael: Thank you for taking the time for this interview! How's the weather in Greece?
Ocean Mind: No problem! Ah, weather ... Well it is getting colder and colder here but we'll be fine.
Michael: You have this stunning new album out, it is called "2 Ready 2 Live", which you recorded in California with Lee Popa who also helped out Tool, Korn or Ministry. Why Lee? How did you get the opportunity and how was working with him?
Ocean Mind: We are glad you liked it. We have been working on many songs during the past years trying to also develop our sound as well as our songwriting. We always had thought of working with a very experienced and respected producer outside our country territory. During that period we were talking with Lee Popa, he liked our songs and believed in us. So we got in touch and begun exchange ideas about our new album and what we had in mind. He wanted to be our producer and to level our sound by making a unique blend of all our influences. His contribution was priceless and unique.
Michael: What about the "2" instead of the word "to"? I found it also on your debut-album. Is there any special reason for this?
Ocean Mind: Well there is not any particular reason for "2" instead of "to". It just looked fine, he-he.
Michael: How did you guys do the songwriting: Did you go into the studio with already finished songs or was it more like rough ideas being worked out in the studio with Lee?
Ocean Mind: I guess there is no specific approach for writing songs. The most usual is coming up with some ideas, riffs or hammond parts, then get together and rehearse till a song is ready. Then Zach usually brings some lyrics in. We make all the arangements and move on to other songs. For ''2 ready 2 live''we came up with about 20 – 25 completed songs and the three of us along with Lee picked out the ones you can hear in the album except ''monkey ear'' wich was recorded on November 2012 right before the album release! Lee helped us as far as arrangements, recording and sound designing.
Michael: There are a lot of Doors-reminiscences on the new Album like the titles "Leather Messiah", "Heavy Load" and especially "Find Yourself". What do the Doors mean to you?
Ocean Mind: Doors is a great band and a big influence to us especially to Zach as a lyricist.
Michael: On your debut album there are a lot of psychedelic hints, like the album-title "Alone we walk, together we fly" or tracks like "Mushroom Fever" or "Mind Trippin'". Did you share Jimi’s enthusiasm for curious authors like Aldous Huxley, William Blake, Tim Leary or Arthur Rimbaud?
Ocean Mind: Yes, we share some of that influences.
Michael: How was California, have you ever been there before?
Ocean Mind: California was BIG! Not all of us had been there before, we actually stayed in Hollywood in order to be near the recording studio, but usually walked around in different L.A. areas. We had a lots of fun.
Michael: Did you have any remarkable or special moments with 'Ocean Mind' that you will never forget and want to share with your fans?
Ocean Mind: Well, getting the band together is a special moment for us. Recording our first songs together, the whole trip for the ''2 ready"sessions was special. Entering a great studio and working with real proffesionals is always great. Every album release is always a great and unique moment. As far as I am concerned, playing in Ocean mind is a special moment itself. Reading a fans sincere words is the best compliment.
Michael: What would you say are your influences and personal favorite bands besides 'The Doors'?
Ocean Mind: We have a lot of different influences: 70s rock, all the greats like Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix, Scorpions, Ufo, Rush, The Doors, 90s, psychedelia, kraut rock, hard rock, metal, blues, progressive, classical, too many ...
Michael: What do you think: How has the Music changed over the last 40 years and especially in the near past?
Ocean Mind: Music has changed a lot in many terms. In the 60s-70s you had all these great bands releasing an album each year, touring like crazy. There was enough space for everyone to explore musically and that was formidable in creating all these different genres. There were great musicians around, very open-minded that had different influences and backgrounds: classical, blues, jazz, etc. and that was critical in being unique and original. In the 80s TV airplay was necessary, image and big productions took over, but I personally think that there was a decline in most genres with the ecxeption of hard and heavy music. I think that the 00s is a much better period musically speaking than the 90s. Things are clearer now. Internet has helped a lot but technology has somehow manage to confuse musicians and destract them from the main goal.
Michael: And do you think music will become more significance again, like in the 70s, where it literally changed people’s lives? A lot of music today seems to be more made like a pair of socks: After worn twice, you can throw it into the trashcan.
Ocean Mind: I have to agree with you in a sense. What can we say? We cant really predict future. Everything nowadays is going so fast. I think that 70s was the most productive period in music terms because of that continuous appetite for improvement and exploration that people had. Nowadays almost every person is watching the world through a screen. Maybe musicians need to see clearly and remember what was their motivation in the first place, kind of going back to their roots in order to develop furthermore, I cant tell for sure ...
Michael: Your singer Zach has this very interesting voice between Ian Astbury and Glen Danzig. Did he ever take any singing-lessons or is this simply the result of a rock 'n' rollish lifestyle?
Ocean Mind: No hes basically self-taught, learning by hearing. But I guess that playing the keys and hammond had helped him a lot. And life can be a good teacher! Yes,you know, he-he.
Michael: What about the Rock scene in Greece? How big is it?
Ocean Mind: There are many good bands in Greece and things have improved during the past years for those who play rock music, but to be honest many things must happen for a scene to be created. Not all of Greek musicians are trully interested in rock music, for many different reasons.
Michael: And how are the Rock fans in Greece? Is there the same enthusiasm than in other European countries?
Ocean Mind: Metal and rock fans are loyal and sincere in most of the countries worldwide. Enthusiasm is expressed differently from country to country and thats the beauty of it.
Michael: Will the European fans ever have the chance to see you outside of Greece on stage? Maybe on a festival?
Ocean Mind: Yes, we are planing some really good things in terms of live appearances. Stay tuned!
Michael: What do you think about vinyl? Is your Album available on vinyl?
Ocean Mind: We are great fans of vinyl, and are really glad for this "vinyl-revival" happening during the last years. As for "2 ready 2 live", well is there any band in the world who wouldn't love to see its release coming out on vinyl?
Michael: Thank you very much taking the time for the interview! Maybe some last words for the people out there?
Ocean Mind: Thanks for your interest and support in our music, we are really happy to see others sharing our vision. We promise some honest and good music in the future.
Moderation: Michael Voit

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