Established in 2000 in Boston, MA, the indie pranksters SeepeopleS have been a band for 21 years. The band, which is the brainchild of bandleader/songwriter/producer Will Bradford, has released 5 full-length albums and 2 EPs on their own imprint, RascalZRecordZ.
It would be an accurate statement to say that there might not be a single band on the planet that covers as much ground musically, or traverses through as many musical universes as the genre warping SeepeopleS does.
Fresh off the release of the tantalizing “It Feels Heavy,” this is the second single to be placed in the ears of the public from their imminent album and eighth studio release, ‘Field Guide For Survival In This Dying World.’ Buttery vocals immediately grace your speakers as you hear the exhilarating croons speak into your soul.
Colliding with the diverse intensity that hails from the frolicking amalgamation of the musical components, there’s something so sacred about the way each respective element is woven together. The tight drum patterns, warm acoustic strums, and electric synths transition from an intimate soundscape that welcomes you into a heartfelt embrace, to a reality-driven amplification that sends a surge of textured distortion through your speakers.
Taking abstract cinema to a newfound dimension, SeepeopleS teamed up with Jack Powell from Opus Thimble Studios in order to create such a forward representation of Terry Gillam animations that take us back to the Monty Python days. Each scene is intricately laced together as we embark on a journey through the narrative portrayed.
"It Feels Heavy," also features the accompaniment of lush vocals from Brooke Binion of theWorst and Nate Edgar from Nth Power and John Brown’s Body serving up the resonated bass line. Capturing our attention through a robust offering of evocative tenors dipped in experimental melodies, SeepeopleS sets the tone for their forthcoming album ‘Field Guide For Survival In This Dying World.’
The pairing of the sonic and visual component for “It Feels Heavy,” has us floored. We love the Alternative vibes that you serve up. Focusing on the music video, what is the narrative that you’re portraying through the striking abstract series of scenes offered up? How does it tie into the sonic component?
I wrote the song as a pretty simple effort to try and make a few folks close to me, feel better. They, just like everyone else recently, were really struggling. As far as the visual work,
I learned a long time ago that it was much more fun and interesting to hand the reins over to a real visual artist. I've been so lucky over the years to work with some great artists in collaboration, and Jack Powell, who animated the video, who is quite the musician himself (see Hot Mustard sound), did an amazing job bringing the song to life and I'll let him answer this one... "The stones and the sea monster represent anxiety and stress. The scenes with the animals are about letting all of the stress and anxiety that people tend to pick up on their journey go for a bit and let loose." -Jack Powell (Hot Mustard, Opus Thimble)-
You worked some wonderful names to bring this vision to life, how did each person contribute to the overall essence of “It Feels Heavy?"
The song is a family affair for sure. I am close friends with Jack's sister and have been listening to his music for a while now, and was lucky to have her show me some of his animated work, and I was floored. I knew Jack was very familiar with SeepeopleS through his sister, and quite frankly, I lucked out in finding another artist dead set on making something different, and something truly weird and engaging. I think he nailed it. Musically, I've been working with co-producer Will Holland for over two decades. He's been my partner and mentors now for as long as I've been making music seriously, and he never bats down an idea I throw at him, however ridiculous and ill-advised the vision may be, ha! On backing vocals, I enlisted (bribed) the help of my bandmate Brooke Binion from my other band that keeps me super busy these days, theWorst. Nate Edgar plays in a band called The Nth Power that I produced recently, and formerly with my favorite American reggae band, and good friends, John Brown's Body. To be fair, I at least do my best to feed them for contributions and make sure no one has to be embarrassed about being involved with the song, mostly.
With your forthcoming album ‘Field Guide For Survival In This Dying World,’ set to be released later this year, what can you tell us about the project?
Again, a family affair. Will Holland and I have been working on the album since 207 and had covid not happened, we had planned to release it in 2020, in time for SeepeopleS' 20th anniversary. A cast of usual suspects, as far as contributing musicians from various albums
of the past have been kind enough to pitch in again. This also had a lot to do with covid, honestly. Being off the road for a period of time, first time in quite some time, I actually had the time to reach out and reconnect with some of my good friends that normally, are all out on separate tours, and often years go by before we get a chance to speak or play or record together, or just plain hang. Musically, the album is sort of an escape to a long-running narrative in all of the SeepeopleS albums, which is essential, "how do you find the right way through a world you think is wrong?." It took me a long time to find my own way, and I'm constantly reminded of the friends and loved ones who didn't make it, who weren't so lucky. Essentially, the album is a musical love letter to them, and everyone likes them, and maybe that means everyone period.
How does “It Feels Heavy,” play into the theme of the album? What inspired you to make this the second single from the body of work?
The song was the last song I wrote for the record, and the only song was written in the last year, during the quarantine. As difficult and isolating the whole experience was for all of us,
I think there was an awakening to the world we live in, collectively, through this joint human experience, I think a lot of people became more sensitive, maybe even hyper-aware, of the burdens we carry through this life, whether by choice or imposed upon us, and both individually and universally. For the first time in a long time, I think we all really felt things together, and some of what we felt, wasn't good, and certainly wasn't easy to talk or think about. These are always the things I try to write about because it makes me feel connected to something bigger, even and sometimes even especially when that something is suffering. Both the first single, Blink and It Feels Heavy ended up being the first singles because they were both intended to make someone or anyone feels better by accepting, first and foremost, that they essentially might have to feel worse first, might have to feel fear first, and confronting those fears is a matter of spiritual survival, especially in times like these and a world as chaotic as now. Most importantly, sometimes you will fail at being your best when confronting the worst, and that is absolutely ok and normal. You are not alone, we are not alone. End of Rant!