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A Dirty Dozen with AQUA SECA – January 2020

| 1 February 2020 | Reply


According to a recent press release: “Aqua Seca released their 5th single, “Slowdrive,” as a teaser to their upcoming LP. Trent Hankinson, the brainchild for this musical project, Derek Stewart, and Jacob Horne decided to take on the music scene following the attention they received for the music video for their previous single, “Whipped Cream.” The original idea for “Slowdrive” came to Trent a little over two years ago. He was sitting in his dorm room, bored, and then just picked him his guitar and let his fingers take it from there.”  We get the band 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 you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Hankinson: Hmm… Difficult question when you have heard each of the songs on the record at least a thousand times. I would say that if you really want to find more to the songs, turn it up loud on a good stereo, these songs were meant to be played loud, at least from a mixing standpoint.

Stewart: Make sure you are sitting down the first few times you listen to Aqua Seca. Personally I don’t know how Trent and Jacob can stand while emanating such powerful music. I’ve seen a lot of first timers collapse when they first hear Nueral Stereo as well.

Horne: A lot of layering, you can hear the keys on don’t care in the background, or the bends on Parallelogram.

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

Hankinson: Always felt the need to make noise, I got my first kit when I was 5 for Christmas, that was awesome. From there, things kind of naturally developed I think. I played when I wanted to, pretty sure I didn’t get any sort of formal training, especially at that age. Later, when I start to play guitar I had an instructor, but that was only from maybe 10 onwards.

Stewart: I grew up listening to Led Zeppelin and the drums always stood out to me. But what finally sparked my interest was watching my uncle play drums in his punk rock band known as Supernova.

Horne: I was listening to this song, “All My Love” by Zeppelin, and in the bridge part, the strings are doing quarter notes and sixteenth notes underneath. I thought to myself I want to learn how to do that, but instead of violins on a keyboard, a guitar.

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

Hankinson: I used to love playing to this recorded live show we had on the TV when I was 9 or 10. It was an AC/DC show from the O2 arena or somewhere equally grandiose, and we would just play along to that endlessly. Particularly the song “Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be”. But if I had to choose one person, it would easily be Paul (McCartney). I think his music is great, but it was more just from what type of person he was. To me it seemed like he was doing it (and is still doing it) because he genuinely wants to, not to please anybody else.

Stewart: My musical taste ranges all the way from country to EDM. I really love it all and can appreciate any musician’s style and efforts. If I had to nail it down to a specific group it would be Led Zeppelin.

Horne: Jimmy Page is easily my biggest musical influence. He stretched the boundaries of what can be done on a guitar to new limits. He was always finding new ways to expand and change their sound.

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

Hankinson: In no particular order, I would say early Tame Impala, Moody Blues, the Beatles, Beach Boys, Floyd, those are the big ones, and I do still enjoy listening to them, but lately I have been trying to get into more under the radar groups.

Horne: In no order, Led Zeppelin, Sublime, The Growlers, Aerosmith, and The Eagles.

Stewart: Led Zeppelin, Supernova, Toby Keith, Mac Demarco and Primus.

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

Hankinson: No question – Todd Rundgren.

Stewart: Mac Demarco! Seems to be one of the coolest guys out there and his music is absolutely amazing.

Horne: Jimmy Page: I would be very interested to learn about his songwriting process and recording/producing techniques.

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?

Hankinson: Psychedelia meets punk rock, then throws synths on top as the icing. I am not really sure, it is always hard to describe your own music. As far as cringe goes… eh, I am not really sure. Nothing I thought was over-the-top weird or anything.

Horne: Heavy guitars meet psychedelic synthesizers.

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

Hankinson: I got the cooking, Derek has the drinks, and Jake usually gets up to jamming a bit while we are doing that, then we eat the food, and get to joining him.

Stewart: From time to time I’ll make us Spicy Arrowhead Pasta but most the time Trent is making us quesadillas or flying dutchmans. Jacob and I usually have a few beers, and Jacob is always first to crack out the acoustic for sing alongs.

Horne: What Trent said.

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

Hankinson: No idea really, not many celebs come down to orange county all that often.

Stewart: When I was hanging out with Art and Dave of Supernova and Steve Sotto walked up and asked to borrow Arts Bass amp.

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?

Hankinson: Hmm… I would say getting to be apart of the lives of people while they aren’t worried about anything, while they are letting loose. That is of course referring to playing live, although it is also amazing to think that the music we make could bring value to people as they are in the tube, or on their way home from work, wherever they may be. As for the second question, this may be cliche, but you would probably have to chop off all of my extremities before I stop playing any sort of instrument, and even then I could always bang my head against something to make noise, not to mention I could always use my voice to make sound. There is no other job for me, really, life wouldn’t have much meaning without playing music…

Stewart: Best part is definitely just groovin and bringing people together. Dream Job would be building badass muscle cars.

Horne: Expressing how I feel without using words. If I wasn’t a musician I’d want to play pro baseball, but I’m a terrible athlete.

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?

Hankinson: I would honestly say most of the questions are pretty good. Nothing gets on my nerves too much either, I guess that is good. Can I phone a friend on this one?

Stewart: Who taught you how to play? The extremely talented drum instructor and friend Keith Delaney.

Horne: Did you ever see yourself making it this far as a musician? No, I tried music once when I was younger and gave up very quickly, and before Aqua Seca I was in a band struggling to develop because I’m away at college most of the year.

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?

Hankinson: I wish I didn’t play in so many cover bands. Granted this was over 5 years ago or so, but I still feel like it put a bad taste in my mouth. Took me a little while to recover after I quit the last one I was in, but hey, without that experience I wouldn’t be where I am today.

Stewart: I’m honestly very happy with the way I’ve done things. I started at a young age, grew up playing in church, and have jammed with many musicians. One thing I do wish is that I learned to play other instruments.

Horne: If I didn’t give up when I was younger, I’d have ten years of musical experience under my belt instead of four.

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?

Hankinson: I would have to choose Pond while they were recording the album Frond. That record is always interesting to me because it isn’t really widely available, and is also a wonderful collection of sounds. That record means a lot, to me it just sounds as though they were doing what they love to do, and to hear that in recorded form couldn’t bring more joy to my ears.

Stewart: I would say Led Zeppelin I but I wouldn’t want to do anything other than be the beer assistant.

Horne: Dark Side of the Moon; no explanation needed.





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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