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A Dirty Dozen with BRYAN SEDLEY from ORPHANS OF DOOM – January 2020

| 30 January 2020 | Reply


According to a recent press release: “Kansas City, MO-based heavyweights ORPHANS OF DOOM will release their second album, aptly titled II, on February 28 via The Company. Formed in the summer of 2016 by Isaacson, Bryan Sedey (guitar/keys) and Gregory Koelling (drums), the trio pursued a singular goal of creating genre-defying heavy music. Melding influences of prog, heavy metal, and sludge, ORPHANS OF DOOM set out to create music that first and foremost satisfied their own tastes, with the intent of drawing equally discerning minds into the fold. Their 2018 debut, Strange Worlds/Fierce Gods, offered a glimpse into ORPHANS OF DOOM’s amalgam of riffs, melodies and rhythms and was met with high praise.”  We get guitarist Bryan 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?

Orphans of Doom II is our second release. I hope the listener grabs it all right away haha. Our first album, Strange Worlds/Fierce Gods was a bit slower, layered, and atmospheric. With II, we just wanted to crank out as much energy and volume as we could without riffs or ideas growing too stagnant. We hope that this album signals a progression to our fans. We don’t want to (as I’m sure most bands don’t want to) write the same album twice. This is the next step in our evolution, and we want it to be a snapshot, not a mission statement. We’re already looking forward to the next one and thinking about what the next progression will sound like.

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

I’d played violin for a number of years before picking up a bass, and eventually switching to guitar. My introduction to classical music and opera through violin is where my tastes started to take form. The darker, heavier and prettier pieces were what I was always drawn to. Stravinsky, Sebelius, and operas like Turandot. Those set the tone for the kind of music I wanted to not only hear, but also create. The classical tastes turned into a love of heavy metal and years later I traded the violin for a bass guitar when a friend was starting a death metal band. I wanted to be a part of that. Honestly it was way easier to write music that had those tones in a band vs composing. I’ve been in bands ever since.

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

In probably ’92 or ’93, my first concert was Megadeth right after they released Symphony of Destruction. Being in that environment for the first time, around other like-minded people, that first taste of heavy music in that huge environment, I understood at that moment that it was what I wanted to do. It influenced me to pick up my first bass guitar. My musical tastes were eclectic at that point and still are, but being in that world, experiencing metal in that way, I knew I wanted to be a part of that universe…

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

That’s probably a hard question for a lot of people to answer. If I had to choose, it’d be: David Bowie – Always innovated, never apologized. Played what he wanted, how he wanted; Genesis – Hear me out.. Not the 80’s form of Genesis, but the early Peter Gabriel era (and early Phil Collins era). Progressive music is a huge influence on me. The main reason is that it rarely adheres to the rules everyone else plays by. Songs don’t have to always be three and a half minutes long. Choruses or hooks don’t always happen X amount of times. No topic off-brand to channel in the lyrics. Rhythms and melodies are almost always something new and unique. And musically, some of the best players out there; Mike Patton – Again with the rule breaking and innovating. That should say enough, but between Tomahawk, Faith No More, Mondo Cane, Fantomas and Mr. Bungle and a ton more, there’s plenty there to make you feel like you haven’t pushed hard enough musically; Type-o-Negative – Brilliant writing, a sense of humor, humility, and again, songs that defied the norm; and Motorhead – I don’t think I need to explain that one.

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

Tough question! I’ll try to keep it fresh and not reuse any of my previous answers regarding influences, etc: It’d be Glenn Danzig. I would love to do something in the realm of Danzig 1-4p. It’s my favorite period of his work, and that dark, bluesy feel is something I would love to emulate.

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?

It’s just heavy music. It’s hard to describe more granularly when there’s not a set thing we’re doing song after song. Sometimes it’s slow and low, other times the tempo is at a fairly fast pace. Dark parts, pretty parts, ambient, intricate… We’ve been called post metal, prog, sludge, but the thing I think we get called a lot though is doom and I wholly disagree. We knew going in with our name that the genre would be hard to shake, but we’re named after a symphonic piece from the soundtrack to the movie Conan the Destroyer, by Basil Poledouris. In my mind it was the most epic piece of music from that already fantastic soundtrack and wanted to model some of our musical atmosphere after that. And next to some actual doom bands, we seem more like disco-era Kiss, i.e., it’s a wholly different vibe.

7. 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?

We all drink. None of us sing. Together, we drink and play music. Apart, I’m a creative director, Justin is a producer/engineer, Greg is a mechanic, Jeremy, a software engineer. Those talents get pulled into our time together to push the band forward. So album artwork, video production, recording the albums, building instruments, rebuilding trailers, fixing touring vehicles of our friends in the scene.. We stay focused on the art in as many ways as we can.

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

I met Vinnie and Dime years ago at The Curtain Club in Dallas, TX. I ran into Vinnie a few more times over the years at shows, too. Nicest guys ever, but yeah totally star struck.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

Best part of being a musician is finding those riffs, melodies or songs overall that make the hairs on your arms stand up. Creating something audibly that causes a physical sensation or reaction is why I do what I do. Being a creative director is a dream job, but if I would choose another, I think pilot would be my choice. Travel is the other thing that I cannot get enough of.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

I don’t want to talk at length and solely about an album in an interview. I’d rather the album do the talking. I can’t tell someone how to feel when or before they put it on. It’s my hope that someone new takes a chance on it and finds something they like. So there’s not really “one” question I want as much as it’s “any” question. Nothing’s really off limits.

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?

Not a singular situation, but the same situation many times as a young musician. Excitement about a song or the amount of effort put in can establish false sense of completion or quality. I think a lot of artists and bands do it. I would take a do-over on honing the ability to take a step back and truly evaluate if something musically or artistically works. I still believe in albums as a complete thought or work of art, and my early albums have those half-cooked ideas peppered in with real, quality ones.

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?

Led Zeppelin I. They were on the verge of one of the biggest things ever. To be a part of that process and see it all take shape for the first album would be my choice. That band influenced so much music going forward, and that’s one of the few albums I can’t wear out.




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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