- Category: Interviews
We at Perfect Prog have previously wrote about Brisbane prog metal band Therein, and their 2015 (re)release "Nobelium." In the interview below, singer and guitarist Cameron Whelan talks about being in Therein, the mentioned album, and plans for the future.
What is it like being in a band such as Therein.
Fun and challenging. There's a lot of freedom to do whatever you like, but there's always a lot of practice to be done. Always.
Have you guys been involved with any other projects before forming Therein? Do you play in any other bands along with your work with Therein?
We've played in a several bands over the years, especially Ryan and Kned. Outside of Therein Kned's probably best known for his time with the North Queensland Booze-Thrashers known as "Canniblast" and with a number of bands in the Metal and Progressive scenes. Currently he also plays in a Blues-Rock group called "Don and The Mobsters".
These days Ryan has been focusing on his solo acoustic guitar adventures, tearing it up fingerstyle playing Blues/Folk/Country/whatever else he can muster. He played at last years International Guitar Festival in Adelaide too.
Therein is my primary focus, but up until recently I played in an Irish band called Aris. Currently I also play in an Experimental/Classical/sort of Post-Rock band called Kior.
Let’s talk about your old-new studio album "Nobelium." How long did it take to complete the work on it?
The initial recording was done over a few weeks, going into the studio one or two days a week. The last three tracks were recorded individually over 2014 - 2015. The remixing/remastering was done in a little over a month.
How does the album (“Nobelium”) title effect the material presented on the record? Give me a snapshot of the topics you explore on the songs.
"Nobelium" doesn't directly represent any particular topic that appears in the album. Nobelium is a man-made element, and given it's unusual chemical properties I felt it was an appropriate parallel to the landscape of the album. We had made something new, with curious quaities. It sort of sounds like the name of a place too.
What were the biggest challenges you faced when making “Nobelium”?
Time! And by extension, money. The recording process was restricted by the amount of time we could utilize the studio. It was also our first time really working together on a recording project, so we were learning a lot as we went.
Tell me about the technical side of “Nobelium.” What kind of gear did you use to write these songs?
A4 sheets of paper, a combination of Bic and Sharpie brand pens, and Guitar Pro 5. So, nothing fancy. We had been gigging for a while before recording, so we had already learned and rehearsed more songs than we were going to record. Some songs were written years before the band existed, and others didn't surface until not long before beginning to record.
Tell me about a process in which a new Therein song is born.
Depends on who the song is coming from, we mostly write individually and bring it to the band to learn or add to. When I bring a song to the band, I do up a demo and send it to the others along with any relevant pdf's/Guitar Pro files, then everyone hates me for making a 11/16 over 4/4 polymeter or something silly like that.
In all seriousness, it's a very individual process so I can't really speak for how the other guys write their songs. I spend days (sometimes weeks, even years) writing and rewriting a song, tearing it apart and putting it back together until it's right. But one thing we all do is bring it to the band, get some feedback, finish it off, then bring it back once more.
What are your plans for the future? New music, touring?
Exactly those two things. We are currently working on our next album - it's going to be a beast. We have well over an hours worth of music to record so far, and more to come. After this is all done we are going to tour in Australia, and then look to touring internationally.
What are your favorite releases of the year so far?
Tres Caballeros - The Aristocrats Coma Ecliptic - BTBAM Silly String - Travis Orbin