Formed in 2001, this German-Peruvian duo offers a mixture of genres such as alternative rock, electronic, industrial and experimental.The band consists of Dave Newman and Nicolo Sommer.Live they are accompanied by guest musicians. To date they have recorded 2 albums: Xcreta (2008) and Teardrops in Zero Gravity (2011). The single “F.W.P.” followed in 2012. Their single “Drop Dead” will come out on Monday (November 30th, 2015). We asked Abject of Decay a few questions about their band history, and where they are now with their music!
Entertwine: How did Abject of Decay form as a band? How did you decide on your unique mixture of genres (alt rock/electronic/industrial/experimental)? We met about 14 years ago in Lima Peru. Nicolo already lived here in Lima and I just arrived and was new to the city. I guess being far away from mainstream music helped us to be free enough to develop our own style. This was before YouTube and before Facebook. So we only got to listen to the music that was available to us in Peru. Even if Peru didn´t understand our style when we started 14 years ago. So we basically recorded music for ourselves. (like it should be always) I think this is how we got to create our unique style.
To this date, you have recorded two full albums, “Xcreta” in 2008, and “Teardrops in Zero Gravity” (2011). How did these two albums differ? Do you feel that you grew musically between the first and second album? If so, why/how? Those 2 albums differ a lot. Xcreta was written mainly by Nicolo and is more alternative rock influenced and Teardrops was mainly written by David and has a more electronic vibe to it. I wouldn’t say we grew musically because our style is so experimental and so free that every song is a new and independent piece of art but you could say that we grew technically. The recording sessions got more sophisticated and we tried out new toys and more instruments.
You are releasing your brand new single, “Drop Dead” today November 30th! What can listeners expect from this new release? They can expect a song that fits well into AOD’s catalog because it has the trademarks of a typical AOD song. Some mysterious lyrics and some dreamy melodies. I would say we found a balance between the alternative style of Xcreta and the electronic style of Teardrops. It definitely sounds organic.
What was the inspiration for the song, “Drop Dead”? Well I (David) came up with the basic song structure and the melodies. And after some back and forth Nicolo added the Idea for the lyrics and so the concept of Drop Dead was born. I won’t get into the details of the meaning of the song. I prefer that everybody tries to make up their own theory. We deliver the soundtrack …. YOU project the images!
What was the recording process like for the new release? Anything unique about recording it this time? Well Nicolo lives in Berlin (Germany) and I live in Lima (Perú) so we had to record our parts separately. It is always a challenge because you have to wait at least 24 hours to get a reaction from the other half of the band. The fact that you have to render your demo and then sent it across the ocean to get feedback is an interesting concept. It makes you think twice before you send something. During the recording it´s good that you are alone in the studio because your creative process doesn’t get interrupted by comments or looks from other band members. I also like to record in a studio with all the musicians present and I love jam sessions, but it’s all about trying new things to create music. Maybe next time we record in a small room together to get the opposite feeling. I dont know, haha.
When you are not performing as a band, what occupies your time as individuals? Dave: Well we all have normal day jobs and we try to live a pretty normal life. It’s important for me not to become a 24/7 artist because real live is where inspiration happens for me. I need the “drama” of a normal life to feel the need to create music.
Nicolo: Yes you can draw inspiration from “real” life beyond music, but if I could I would lead a musician’s life 24/7.
How have your cultural backgrounds (Peru/Germany) shaped your work as musicians? I think if you listen to AOD you don’t hear any typical German or Peruvian styles. Our music is free from local influences. But like I said before it helped to be in Perú, far away from LA, London or Berlin. We are outsiders and that helped us to not get involved in trends or music movements that are created by the industry.
Who are some of your influences as a band, or as musicians, and why? We are more influenced by films and life than by other bands. It’s funny but when I watch a great film and when the credits roll I feel the need to record music and the movie sets me into a special mood and that mood reflects on my songwriting.
What has been one of your more memorable performances, and why? I remember a gig in Lima where we thought nobody would come because we didn’t had time to promote the gig but in the end the place was packed and people were standing in the street and couldn’t get in. It was funny because we played a lot of electronic equipment on that gig and the stage was moving with the movement of the drummer and that caused a short circuit and we lost power for about 5 minutes. It was a bit embarassing but we had fun that night and the crowd enjoyed the gig.
What is in store for Abject of Decay in 2016? Any upcoming shows? “Drop Dead” is kind of a comeback even though we never went away completely. We enjoyed the recording process so much that we will continue with the recording sessions and there will be more songs ready to be released in 2016. We don’t know yet if we will release them as an album or an EP or just every month a new single. We´ll see.
On the 30th of December we will be playing at a local electronic music event in Lima (https://www.facebook.com/events/738326636267982/) but we’ll present some AOD melodies disguised as electronic experimental dance music. Other than that we have no gigs planed. It´s difficult because Nicolo resides in Berlin now and I guess we will wait until we have at least 10 new songs before we revisit the idea of taking the time and hiring musicians to get an AOD touring band on the road.