Before getting out on the road, Cristina and Nick from Oblivious Signal sat down with us for a few minutes to answer some burning questions.
NRR: The number one question you learn to hate until the end of time, if you don’t already, tell me about your name Oblivious Signal and how did you guys pick it to represent you?
Cristina: The band was named a few years before I entered the band. Nick and Jay were throwing out names and Jason randomly texted Nick, Oblivious Signal, and it was as if they were both in sync at the time and knew what it meant.
NRR: Your bio reads that you’ve been around since 2007. Do you feel your national exposure is well earned with the new album coming out or should we have heard of you in a big way before now?
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Cristina: We have worked hard for a very long time and been through the ups and down of the industry. It definitely took us some time to really find our niche sound to bring the quality music we are delivering today in this album, and we definitely feel excited that we have earned the exposure we are getting, but still humbled by it. Everything happens for a reason at the right time, and this just so happens to be our time right now.
NRR: Cristina is a classically trained vocalist. Does that add a different viewpoint on writing songs? Does it allow a higher level of understanding on what her voice can do in and around the songs?
Nick: As a multi vocal range trained vocalist in general, not so much in the classical genre (that’s takes many more years), we have been able to expand the key range in which the songs can be written. When we first started a lot of the songs were a lower tuning and as Cristina’s vocal range expanded to allow for different tunings, we as a band also grew into writing with more freedom.
NRR: Since I brought it up, how does the writing process happen?
Cristina: The writing process usually starts with Nick coming up with a guitar riff. It could be a hook, or just an idea to build upon. Most of the time now due to the fact we have an in home studio, we track the ideas and send them out to the rest of the band. So Nick comes over and we work on the structure together and the lyric process together. Then we bring it to practice to jam out with drums and bass. Once in a while at practice jamming we do come up with some really cool ideas as well and we reverse the process and then take them back to track and work out the details.
NRR: Tell me about the album coming out, Exordium. What are you the most happy with on this cd?
Cristina: We are happy we did everything on our own. For years we had been recording and while we had good engineers, everyone kept diverting us to a soft rock/pop sound. So we took upon ourselves to do everything on our own this time. I bought equipment and invested in an in home studio. The fact we got the quality and sound we wanted self producing and engineering is what made us the happiest with this CD.
NRR: What would you want a first time listener to come away with after hearing the album initially?
Cristina: Definitely a sense of being able to relate and feel that the music impacts them in a positive way. When we have fans tell us our music speaks to them and helps them get through whatever situation it is they are going through, it makes everything we do worth it.
NRR: Having been around the music scene for a while now, is there a classic Spinal Tap moment the band has had while out on tour? Any story that makes people laugh every time it’s brought up that you’d share with me?
Cristina: We have had our share of crazy stories and moments…from fans that have had too much to drink jumping on stage and falling off mid performance, making us laugh mid set, to Nick picking up police radio frequencies at venues with his gear. The fan falling was definitely the funniest one though. I was shocked someone actually jumped on stage, and then started waving their beer around me as I was singing. The boys were concerned and by the time venue security came up, the guy took a step back off the stage and fell right off. No injuries but let’s just say I was too busy laughing to finish off the final chorus of the song.
NRR: You’re going to go out on tour shortly. Are you as a band excited to be going out on the road or is it just another part of the job at his point? Have you played with any of the other bands going out with you before this?
Cristina: We are very excited to go on tour. It’s been something we have sporadically done in the past but not as intensive as we are doing now. It is part of the job, but it’s the part you like and work hard to finally get to do. All the years of practice, writing and doing all the ground work leads up to this. We haven’t played with FLAW or Seasons After before, but we have been fans of both bands for a while. So it really is exciting to hit the road with bands you look up to.
NRR: Who are some of the influences you guys had to help fashion the sound you have? There are some bands that you can just tell, yeah band x is definitely one for them. You guys, not so much.
Cristina: We are very diverse from each other when it comes to musical taste but love the type of music we do. I think that diversity is what sets us apart from bleeding in too many influences from one particular band or genre. Jason and Nick are big Metallica fans. Nick is more classic rock oriented, Jay and I listen to more of a broader spectrum of rock to modern music, and Greg is a jazz guy with a modern influence as well. So I guess now that I think about it, no wonder we can’t really be pegged for sounding like someone else. We are one big melting pot of different musical backgrounds and ideas.
NRR: Is there any advice that the Oblivious Signal of today would give the Oblivious Signal of 2007 as they were just starting out?
Cristina: Oh wow…yes! I think about this constantly because of the amount of time saved. Just because someone says they managed an artist doesn’t mean they were successful at it. Do more research before signing any contracts. If a manager tries to break your band up, cut them out. For a good two years after our first album Into the Night we dealt with someone like this, and it actually held us back two years. Also another thing I would tell 2007 OS is research everything in the genre in general. Our new motto is, if you are not as good or better than the top ten in your genre, you may not make it in the industry. The goal is to strive for the best you can offer the fans.
NRR: You get a note from an adult beverage company saying you are now sponsored by them. What adult beverage is it going to be?
Cristina: Jack Daniels, gotta always have it on the road.
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0hrYWVye98]Oblivious Signal – The Inflicted Shame!
Catch the review of Exordium by National Rock review, here!
Catch them on the road near you! Let us know what you thought!
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