Wand is a relatively new LA psychedelic-garage rock quartet with line-up comprised of Cory Thomas Hanson (Chad and The Meatbodies, Pangea, Mikal Cronin), Daniel Martens (Battleship, Zulus), Evan Burrows and Lee Landley.
In 2014 Wand released their psychotropic substances fueled debut record “Ganglion Reef” on Ty Segall's Drag City imprint God? Records, while the release itself led them to receive almost instant critical acclaim worldwide. The songs featured on this record can be described as powerful and abrasive with specific melodic and soft qualities to them.
The sophomore record “Golem” released earlier this year on In The Red Recordings, in comparison to their debut, features more heavy riffs and stoned melodies and is in overall a more compact and refined piece of work, which in its totality proves that Wand is a band worthy of all the praise they get.
Their performance in Zagreb is set for 3rd of June 2015 at club Klub.
I have to notice Californian bands are quite popular in Europe as well as in Croatia, we had Cosmonauts and Marriages perform here recently while Wand and Jack Name are scheduled to perform in July. What is going on in LA and the SF Bay Area? Is there something in californian wine? What kind of psychotropics do you people use there? : )
I don't know what drugs people take in LA. Probably designer drugs like 23cb2b or whatever. Something with the Mali high, but the perkiness of speed that has a featherlight Special K comedown, and gives you perma-whippet voice. I don't do drugs so I don't know what I'm talking about.
Your debut record “Ganglion Reef” was released on Ty Segall's God? Recordings. How did it come to that? Did Ty come to your show, saw your live performance and told you “I have to sign you on my label.” or was it a different kind of an occurrence?
Actually it happened exactly like that!
The sophomore record “Golem” in comparison to the debut features a heavier and almost metal-kind of a sound, it got released on In The Recordings, home of bands like Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Pussy Galore and Ty Segall Band – was the offer to move to a new label something you couldn't refuse or did you want to explore other options for distributing your music? And referring to heavier sound – was it a natural way to move forward, did you intentionally want to make it as such or did it just happen during writing and recording?
It feels more natural to have an "open relationship" with what labels we work with. To me, I could never forge a business relationship with someone who was going to be handling my creative endeavors unless I could walk away at any time. How people sign 4 record contracts with major labels through A&R Reps and feel comfortable with that I have no idea. It seems pretty sketchy. That being said, Larry at In The Red is a true believer, and it was very soon after deciding to write the Golem record that we started talking about working together. It felt very appropriate, and natural. Like we were all just forming into each other, because we all love and appreciate the same records.
I have read in the Wild Magazine interview back from last year that you use a bunch of synthesizers and different effects through which you run the guitars in order to achieve a nastier kind of unnatural quality. Is the equipment you use something that makes you inspired to create music or is your source of inspiration found someplace else? What is your source of inspiration? Are there any bands and artists that inspire you?
We love equipment and machines. It's a fun game to call anything a machine, it exposes its mode of production and your desire to utilize the machine for its intended purpose. This gets complicated, because people are machines too.
The cover art of “Ganglion Reef”, a demon hand holding a painting of a cave, was done by Meghan Tryon while the inside artwork was made from source material from Final Fantasy VI game. Who did the cover art for “Golem”? What is the idea or the overall theme behind it?
Ruben Sawyer did the cover artwork. He does artwork for a lot of metal and punk bands in the USA. We basically just sent emails back and forth about the LP and I gave him a big bag of source material to use. A lot of Greek persona masks, wire album covers and pictures of my dog. Meghan Tryon did the gate fold and insert artwork for the record. She also did all the artwork for Ganglion Reef.
According to the Jewish folklore, a Golem is an animated anthropomorphic being magically created from inanimate matter who serves his creator under controlled conditions. A wand usually represents a hand-held stick or rod used in magical ceremonies as a mean to channel energy. What kind of sorcery are you dealing with in your music?
Very real sorcery. The kind of ritual that involves electricity, amplified sound, and an infinite supply of bodies.
This will be you first live performance in Zagreb and Croatia. What can the local audience expect from you? Do we need to bring earplugs to your show?
Yeah I would certainly recommend ear plugs!
Thank you for taking the time to answer the questions and I have to say that I am already looking forward to your performance!
Foto: Meghan Tyron