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A Dirty Dozen with SOPHIA ASLANIDES of SEASON OF GHOSTS – March 2019

| 28 March 2019 | Reply


According to the bands bio: “Season of Ghosts is a spiritually groundbreaking, intergalactic music project, dedicated to the love for the unseen and film soundtracks. Combining massive riffs, harsh electronics and powerful, compelling vocals, through the eerie spectrum of a Sci-Fi, horror movie, Season of Ghosts has received enthusiastic reviews and critical acclaim for its pleasantly diverse sound and soul- awakening, motivational song meanings.” We get singer and founding member Sophia to discuss new music, influences, and much more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Our latest single is a song called “Listen”. It’s the third single/video off our new studio album, A Leap Of Faith that was released on October 23rd, 2018. I have the habit of hiding things in my songs, compose lyrics that have double meanings, but this time around I chose to be straightforward because my intention was to create songs that feel like a proverbial slap in the face. They are songs about awakening to a new reality, a new life, your life the way you truly want to live it. There’s always a lot of digging to do when it comes to my music. I always add little nice tidbits in the backing vocals, the lyrics, in the effects, the album artwork, the costumes even and people love discovering them.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

Music for me was not a choice, it was my everyday life. My grandpa is a reknowned music teacher, he can play pretty much every musical instrument and studied classical music in Russia, so he taught me how to appreciate music and play piano at a very young age, before I could even write. My parents never encouraged a career in music, so music was just my extra homework. I’d go to school and then go to music school for piano and music theory. At some point in high school I gave up and picked it up again during University. I started taking electric guitar lessons and then singing lessons. I didn’t have a moment when I realized I wanted to be a musician per se, it’s just that I felt guilty if I didn’t put all those years of study into good use, plus performing was for me the scariest thing ever and I wanted to overcome my fear. So when opportunity knocked on my door, I accepted and moved to Japan to be the singer of a famous metal band, Blood Stain Child. How’s that for a challenge?

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

The Smashing Pumpkins always made me go wooooow, the entire thing, the songs, the videos, the members, the eccentricity of Billy Corgan. I still love the way he talks. UK band Anathema also plays the most incredible shows, emotionally heightened, spine-tingling. I loved watching my friend DIAURA shred the stage last time I was in Japan. And also D. Asagi is the ultimate showman, voice and also a lovely person. If you’ve never heard of them, they’re Japanese visual kei artists.

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

I can’t really pinpoint musical influences because it’s against my policy to build my creativity on another person’s creativity, because in my book that’s counter-creative. I just get inspired by all of the artists and bands I’ve listened to through the years, a bit here a bit there. For sure, I can say that there’s a clear Japanese rock and Japanese pop influence in my music and vocals. I also love mixing electro-industrial, techno, trance into my songs, I love many EBM and industrial bands. Also, people tend to understand I come from Europe when they listen to my vocal lines. I guess that’s because I grew up listening to a lot of European metal, although I’m not a fan of anything close to symphonic. I like melodic death and bands like the old Anathema, Sentenced, Katatonia, Opeth, The Gathering.

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

Taka from ONE OK ROCK perhaps. Probably the best Japanese rock band at the moment and his voice is lovely.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

Healing, motivational, intellectual metal and rock, delivered with honesty and love (and cat hair).

7. What’s the best thing about being a musician?

Creating music is a sort of superpower, that has the ability to influence unknown amounts of people. How many times have you been troubled about something and suddenly a song comes up on the radio, a random lyric and you’re like “a-ha!” and it motivates you, it can turn your day around, make you think and feel differently. Sort of like a drug that a doctor prescribes. Only music has no side effects usually. A doctor can heal one person at a time, a musician can heal many people at the same time. That’s why I believe the role of a professional musician is not to be taken lightly. I don’t play music to look cool or to become famous or to get things. All that is okay and respectable, but personally my main target is to be usefully creative, to reach out to people who might need to hear a word of encouragement, something that might help them get through a tough day. That’s all.

8. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

Sam is the cook, but I like cooking too. We don’t really drink, but Sam loves cider lately! We’re also dead boring. No guitars unless it’s for a song composition, rehearsal or recording, hahaha~

9. When was the last time you were star struck and who was it?

Do we have to mention only musicians? Well, I love Dance with the Dead lately, I’m an 80s-90s kid, so all those synths and sounds are so pleasant to my ears.

10. If you weren’t a musician, what would be your dream job?

Being a musician is not a full time job these days, everybody has to work to get by I think. Unless you’re huge. Dream job… I’d like to be an actress and to create and direct movies and compose the soundtrack. Or have a hotel chain, or restaurant chain.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”, even if it didn’t change your current situation?

My whole time in Blood Stain Child was a train wreck. I was a newbie in the music industry, so I kept silent and tolerated rude and abusive behaviors I shouldn’t have tolerated, for way too long. After leaving the band I felt pretty much helpless and dependent on other people because I had music in me, but no knowledge of music software, so I had to depend on others that just wasted my time and money and Season of Ghosts took way too long to start. People thought I was done for. Anyway, you learn about it, everything is a lesson and I learned mine.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

Never really thought about it. I’m not sure. Perhaps Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness by The Smashing Pumpkins. It’s an album that marked the best part of my teenage years. That and Siamese Dream.





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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