Published Mar 11, 2009There's always been something rather rag-tag about Kylesa's sound. It could be the mixing together of sludge, crust, doom and punk; it might have been the always raw production. Maybe it was trying to cram two drummers into this already crowded sonic space. It's always been an enjoyable sound, one that captures the vibe of early Neurosis like few bands have managed; it's just always been a bit difficult. With their fourth disc, Static Tensions, produced by guitarist/vocalist Philip Cope, and utilizing two studios, the band have finally done it. They recorded this album with an eye to detail, losing some of the tossed-off edge that previous discs had but retaining enough of the raw feel to keep that aspect of their identity intact. Songs like "Almost Lost" and "Insomnia for Moths" are more concise than Kylesa have ever been, carrying a mean groove but also an atmospheric feel. The two drummers gel nicely, not going overboard, just complementing each other on tracks like "Said and Done" and closer/album highlight "To Walk Alone." It all works. Kylesa have crafted an artful experience, one that combines their many sounds into a cohesive whole, finally.
Why did you record portions of the album in two studios?
Cope: So Laura [Pleasants] could have a lot of time to experiment with sounds and more of the trippy guitar stuff she wanted to do. We put her in another studio with an engineer and the two of them would spend all day trying out different amps and pedals. She got some amazing tones.
You have John Baizley doing the artwork. Are you worried your album cover is going to look like another John cover?
If you get John to do the artwork it's going look like John. He's a good friend and even though some of his stuff does look similar we knew he'd give us something that would be right. I'm not worried about that. Really, in ten years, who's going to care?
With unlikely bands like Mastodon getting bigger, could this be the album to get you guys some attention?
I bet Prosthetic would like that to happen [laughs]. I've been doing this for 15 years, between Damad and Kylesa. I've seen so much come and go; I've just done my thing all the way through it. If it does get bigger and more people are into it, that's awesome. But I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. (Prosthetic)