Philip of Caspian

Philip of Caspian

by Jason

Hello Philip. Would you please introduce yourselves to our readers by giving a bit of the band’s history?  How and when did you form?  What were your first writing experiences like as a band?

Caspian officially started in November of 2003 when Cal and I started listening to records, hanging out and talking about forming a project. Cal had played with Joe and Chris in another band prior to this and thats how he got them on board. We had no intentions of doing anything other than jamming with each other and having a good time playing music. We didn’t play our first show until august of 2004 and since then we have been playing consistently. Erin came on board earlier this year originally just to help us tour and now is a permanent member of the band.

In terms of personal experience, how did you all get involved in music?

Most of us started playing music as an opportunity to make friends and hang out with people and it developed from there.

You first full-length, The Four Trees is epic and wide-reaching. How did the songs develop?  What was the recording process like and why did you pick these songs in the particular order you place them in the album?

The Four Trees was written over the span of a couple years. The song writing process developed naturally and remained engaging as it does when a band is young, eager, hungry and wants to write the best record they are capable of.

The recording process was challenging only because we had to condense those

2 years of writing into a 2 week recording session. In the end it turned out fine and we are proud of the record. In terms of song placement, that came a month or so before we went into record the album. It gave us the narrative and direction we needed to texture the album accordingly as we were creating it.

Can you give us a low down on your gear, especially what you used on the album?  The guitars are huge and the drums and bass powerful.  Do you use the same set up live?

More or less. A lot of the heavy, heavy guitar distortion sounds are coming from a Boss Metal Zone on the record and since live it’s a lot harder to control, so we use Daddy O’s, Sparkle Drive, Metal Muffs and Tubescreamers in concert. Getting the hugest distortion sound possible was something we would not let slip through the cracks and I think we captured a good sound to the best of our ability for the record. We actually recorded most of the bass tracks through a Marshall 4×12 cab and live there is the bohemoth 8X10 stack to round it all out. Drums were all ab out mic placement and knowing when to back off or soak up the room sound in the studio.

“Asa” is a breathtaking song and probably my favorite on the album.  Can you give specifics behind what inspired the song?  What are each of your faves on the disc and why?

I think communally “ASA” is the song we feel came out the best on the record, but since its just me here answering I cant say for sure. In terms of inspirations, I think all of us are coming from different places when we write but there is certainly a strong collective sense of hope with that specific song that we all feel equally.

What bands would you say have influenced your sound?  Are there any visual artists or authors you find inspiring when painting your sonic landscapes?

Our tastes are all very, very different but there are some big commonalities. Bands like Tool, ISIS, Massive Attack and Mono… These bands definitely all affect us equally. I think most of our inspiration comes from everyday life experience though. The things we go through on a daily basis whether they are interactions with friends, going to work, sitting by the ocean, going for a walk, watching a good movie – all of these experiences shape the emotional currents that run beneath our songs more than any band or artist. Life experience makes up the core of our influence for sure.

What do you do in your “day jobs,” or has music become a sufficient source of income?

Caspian is still costing us money personally so we can’t yet afford to quit our day jobs. Thankfully we are in flexible positions so we can continue to tour like crazy like we have for the last 2 years. Hopefully down the road we can take up the band full time. We have every intention of trying to make it our full time job and it gets closer and closer the harder we work at it right now.

What are your future plans for Caspian?  Are you already thinking of or writing new tunes?

We are currently writing as much as possible and getting ready for a huge tour this fall in the US. We have written a couple songs that will probably make the next record and there is a lot more to go. I’m sure this winter we will have a new album ready to record and I expect it to come out in 2008 or maybe early ’09. We are not interested in covering old ground so the process becomes harder with each record but we are committed to writing something we all mutually believe in.

What are you all listening to lately?  What’s the rotation like in your player?

Dalek. Battles. Giants. JoJo. Stars of the Lid.

Do you have any other comments like contact information, etc you would like to leave with the readers?

We always want to say thank you to people that listen to our records and come to our live shows if we get the opportunity, so we want to sincerely thank those that support us. Can’t wait to see you guys this Fall on tour.

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