Interview: Sierra talk new one track concept/murder themed EP “72″

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Monday, February 15, 2016 at 9:13 AM (PST)


Jason Taylor of Canada’s promising newish sludge prog band Sierra checks in to kick off this week with a great interview. Some may know the band from their Kylesa endorsed Retro Futurist release Pslip from a few years ago, a record that lures me back for repeat listens even amidst all the daily promos and other shit on my plate to distract me. It was kind of like I had found a trippier C.O.C. or stoner rock Tool and the music had a certain warm hazy but powerful quality I loved.

Time passes and the band is back with the 72 EP, a unique long form song with a grisly tale behind it. The 72 EP will see self-release by the band on March 4th, on both CD and digital formats and is sure to be more than worth discovering.

Read MORE below.

What gave you the idea for a long form song? The new Iron Maiden epic or Ufomammut, Sleep, Usx, Inter Arma and their ilk? Is the long form song like Iron Butterfly days coming back?

I hope so. We’re prog nerds at heart. Most of our favourite songs are long, 70′s-era progressive epics. 72 is more of a tip of the hat to tracks like “Suppers Ready”, “2112″, or “Cygnus X-1″.

You guys covered “War Pigs” recently. Fun time? Your favorite Ozzy-era Sabbath tune?

Yeah man. Every once in a while we’ll do a hometown show where we play 2-3 sets. In the past we’ve covered entire Sabbath albums front to back. We’ve done the first three at this point. Always a good time. Playing covers is great because you know going in that the songs are good. You don’t have to worry about the songs sucking!

Are you fans of the band Anvil? Just curious.

You pretty much have to give it up for Anvil where we’re from.

 What can you tell us about the story to the EP and the beautiful artwork? Where does the 72 title come from?

The story is a true story I was told by an older friend of mine. His girlfriend was murdered back in 1972 by a group of men. He was the last person any one seen with her alive, so he was the main suspect for about a year. It wasn’t until one of the ‘bastards’ killed himself and left a confessional suicide note that he was cleared of all the charges. His life was completely thrown upside down, but he rose above it, and picked himself back up in many ways.

He is a fan and supporter of the band, and when I asked if I could write about it, he was more than happy to let me. The album is a tribute to him. The album itself is written like a screenplay or script for a musical. Its prog rock snobbery, but we love it.

The artwork was done by Felideus. He’s made some shirts for us in the past. I first seen some drawings he did for childrens story books. Kids stories are twisted, and his art reflects that in a strange beautiful way. We were stoked when he said he digs our band and wanted to work with us.

I bought Pslip from you guys when I saw you with Kylesa and thought it was a future classic. So many good grooves, riffs and melodies on it. What can we expect next time you do a new long player?

Thanks man. 72 was something we needed to get out of our system, and something to give people to listen to in between albums. The new stuff is heavier than anything we’ve ever done before. Most of it’s written already.

Will we see you in the States again soon?

I’m sure you will. Now that we have a new album out we want to come back asap. This is the first time in a few years we’ve been stuck in Canada in January. We’re ready for some warmer weather.

Is there a certain sub genre of metal you identify with the most? I detect variety in your sound albeit an emphasis on stoner rock, classic metal, etc.

The metal we get the most inspiration from as listeners would be prog metal. We grew up together and bonded over listening to classic albums like Scenes from a Memory, Deadwing, and Tool albums. But when it comes down to it, we love good riffs, and that’s when the classic metal and stoner stuff you mentioned comes out. Its the way we go about things, I guess.

How did you feel when you completed 72 EP and heard the final mixes?

We were stoked. It took along time to conceptualize and Phillip Cope and Zac Thomas at the Jam Room busted their asses for us to get it done. We only had 8 days to do it. I think everyone was exhausted form the experience, but it was totally worth it. Next time we’ll book more time at the Jam Room.

The first listen after it came back from mastering was the best. There’s nothing better than that really.

photo by Chris Fertnig

photo by Chris Fertnig




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