VASA: 5 Things That Inspired ‘Burst Open’

burst open

VASA tour Ireland in February.

Two things. Instrumental proggy math rock Glasgow quartet VASA recently released a rather explosive single featuring the tracks ‘Burst’ and ‘Open’. Calling to mind the likes of And So I Watch You From Afar and maybeshewill, the tracks mine a technically impressive and soaring brand of instrumental rock music. Unusual song structures, and unique musical techniques are the order of the day as the quartet explore peaks and valleys of sound. Also, they’ll be touring Ireland in February with fellow instrumentalists Body Hound. Both of these facts delight us here at Overblown.

Check out their Irish tour dates:


With all this in mind, we had a chat with the band about the inspiration behind ‘Burst’ and ‘Open’.

1. Alcohol / Body Hound

Burst / Open is a literal description of the mental and physical state that Blaine found himself in following a particularly heavy night on tour in Brighton with our part-time lovers, Body Hound. Blaine had over-indulged on the beer front and got in to such a state he was only capable of uttering the words “Burst”, “Open” and “The worst” to the guys in Body Hound who were desperately trying to get him back to the house they were all staying in.

2. The Digitech Drop Pedal

This pedal is fucking witchcraft, pure and simple. It instantly changes the pitch of your guitar strings WITHOUT ANY TUNING. Absolute sorcery. Anyway, we’d wanted to experiment with some dropped tunings in our songs for a while but we’re inherently lazy so never bothered. Until we got a hold of a couple of these bad boys. Open is in Drop B tuning, usually we’d have to have special thick-as-fuck gauge strings to make that sound halfway decent, but this pedal has made all our lazy dreams/song ideas come true.

3. Tom Bloody Peters

Tom’s a bloody good bloke from a bloody good band (Alpha Male Tea Party), and as it turns out a bloody good producer as well. His knowledge of tone and pedal wizardry really helped to shape the way these songs came together and a couple of suggestions he made in the studio have turned into some of our favourite parts of the songs. It was great having someone with such a strong background in our scene and working on this type of music to bounce ideas off and work on making the two tracks as strong as they could possibly be. Also, we got to do the Power Rangers Megazord thing with our pedalboards and his, it was a sight/sound to behold.

4. Blast Beats

Niall’s got a background rooted in playing in several hardcore/doom/whatever else you call those bands for a few years and we’ve been noticing his blast finger has been itching since he first joined the band, and on Burst, we finally let him loose on what we hope is one of the most upbeat blast beat sections to have ever been put to tape (or .wav, whatever).

5. Traditional Scottish Music

We noticed a while back that on a few reviews of our album ‘Colours’ that people had been mentioning that our music had a slight celtic (not the football team) feel, so we decided that we should play up to those apparent similarities in the next few songs that we write. Burst is our totally bastardised version of a traditional Scottish tune. Fuck you Runrig.

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