Covering music every day can, surprisingly, make one pretty cynical. There’s a lot of hyperbolic e-mails and chaff to wade through. It can mean that one can skim over submissions, and very nearly let something extraordinary slip through your fingers. This is what happened with London one-man band Aloric and his sublime debut track ‘Who?’. He had to send me two e-mails to get me to take notice of his spellbinding amalgamation of light and dark. It’s that kind of thing that re-invigorates your ability to scour everything looking for the hidden gem.
Now, Aloric has graced us with some time to have a chat with him. We talked about his plans to release music independently, his plans for the first shows, and the upcoming 7 minute follow-up to ‘Who?’, called ‘Grace’.
Overblown: Thanks for taking the time to talk to us at Overblown! So how did the band come into being? Why the mystery?
Thanks for taking the time to interview me.
I’m a guitarist/songwriter primarily, and had the pleasure of working with some great musicians and singers, but slowly found out that people let you down a lot in this industry. When you have a vision, finding the right people to represent that idea and carry it forward is always going to be a long process, so I eventually just thought it best to do everything myself. I taught myself singing/piano/production/mixing/mastering and everything in between. Except drums though, the guy on the tracks is a London-based drummer called Tim Robins, he really is exceptional.
In terms of ‘mystery’, I’d say it hasn’t been, or at least didn’t start, as an intentional decision. I’d just like the music to be the sole focus.
O: You had never heard of Godflesh before Overblown mentioned a link between the more aggressive portions of your debut track ‘Who?’ and the pioneering industrial group’s grind. Have you given them a listen? What do you think of the comparison? Was it one that surprised you?
Yeah I did have a listen. I can definitely understand the intro comparison but as a complete track, I felt my release ‘Who?’ was pretty different. I do like the Industrial sound though, it sort of slaps you in the face and wakes you up.
O: Is the track an indication as to your other songs?
My other tracks go from Steve Reich-esque polyphonic guitar loops, to post-rock walls of sound, so it’s pretty diverse. But I produce/mix/master everything myself, so the ‘Aloric stamp’ permeates through everything I do.
O: Since you debuted ‘Who?’, you have also debuted a range of t-shirts, a hashtag Twitter campaign, amongst other things. It seems to me that you are someone that is quite concerned with the aspects of your project outside of the music itself. Do you think that it is pivotal for musicians to be concerned with all aspects of their ‘business’ in the modern age?
Yes. If you want to be successful in music you quickly realise that the online world is something you have to engage with. You have to think about the business elements. And just have enough conviction in the music and your trajectory that you can stomach sending however many emails, editing videos and pressing tees. It’s all exciting but it’s never going to be as enjoyable as just making/playing music.
O: You released your debut track for free independently via Bandcamp and Soundcloud. Is this a business model you intend to continue? Have you had any contact with record labels about future releases?
Yeah my next release will be independent, at the moment a label is not something I’m overly worried about. I’ve learned so much about the music industry from doing everything myself, and still think there’s more to learn from another independent release.
O: Your logo is a mandala which is a spiritual symbol in Indian religions, representing the universe. Who designed the logo and what significance does it have for Aloric?
Well the Universe thing is the reason I started pursuing music properly. I saw a show at the Planetarium in London and it simultaneously imploded & exploded my mind at the same time. I just had this realisation how finite life was and how unbelievably lucky we are to live on the one planet where life exists so magically, so I felt a responsibility to start doing what I loved in life. I quit my job in fashion a few months later and started doing music full-time. The logo is a constant reminder to me of why I’m doing this.
O: What is the next step for Aloric?
I’m releasing the next track in a few weeks. It’s around the 7-min mark, it’s called ‘Grace’, and it’s a tribute to one of my favourite musicians.
And by the end of the year I’m hoping to have played my first show. Am going to do that, followed by some private ‘living room sessions’ next year, which will be invite only – friends, fans and friends of fans type thing. You’re of course invited!
Follow Aloric on Facebook.