By Rod Whitfield
Perth based progressive rock/metal act Chaos Divine are all set to release their superb new album. Entitled Colliding Skies, the album very much lives up to its epic sounding name. Also rather epic was the writing and recording process, apparently: it has been four long years since the band’s last record The Human Connection. Putting a full blown album together, and making certain it sounds amazing is a massive undertaking, even for full time bands, let alone for bands whose members all work other jobs.
According to jovial guitar player Simon Mitchell, speaking from warm and sunny Perth, this was one of the major reasons why this, their third album, took its time in the incubator. Their exacting standards being another. Whilst the band are extremely happy with the results of their efforts, Mitchell tells us some of the tracks gave them a few headaches at times
“It started basically as soon as we’d finished ‘The Human Connection’,” he recalls, “everyone’s got jobs and things like that, so it’s hard to find the time really. The five of us all have our different lives, which we all get on with. It’s kind of a weekend thing, to be honest, trying to write these songs.”
“So yeah, it just takes time, really. We don’t write songs quickly. I wish we did! It takes a lot of time and a lot of fiddling to get these songs where we want them to be.
But ultimately they are extremely happy with the end result, despite the fact that some tracks gave them a few headaches at times.
“Some of the songs came out surprisingly quite good, considering that there were a couple of songs that we kinda rushed through, because we had this date of starting recording which was last easter!” he laughs, “so a long time ago. We decided that that was the time we needed to start recording this thing, if we were to have any chance of getting it finished within a reasonable time. There were a couple of songs that still seemed pretty unfinished. They just sort of came together, which was quite lucky!I put it down to luck!”
“But yeah, we’re feeling pretty good about it actually,” he enthuses, “It was a lot of work, four years or so getting it done. It’s good to get it out, and it’s really good to get some good reviews and to hear people saying good things about it, makes it all worthwhile.”
The album marks a slight change in direction for the band, or at least a strong continuation of a change in sound that began on The Human Connection, after their far heavier, darker beginnings on their first EP and debut album of 2008, Avalon. Mitchell sites another band, also based in Perth, as part of the inspiration for this stylistic shift.
“We have moved onto more of a rock kind of vibe, I suppose,” he admits, “when you have bands like Karnivool in town, who have really kind of pushed the envelope with that thing where they create pretty crushingly heavy moments, from a band that you wouldn’t necessarily call a metal band. They kind of set the bar for us. We’re not neccesarily trying to re-create that sort of thing, but I guess do our own take on that.”
“That’s just kind of how it came out, some really heavy moments with some not so heavy moments, which just creates a good dynamic I suppose.”
The band kick off their national tour on March 20th with a hometown album launch at The Amplifier Bar. The tour is a combination of their own headline shows and local festival spots where they get to play in front of people who may be less familiar with them. Mitchell is excited about the tour, and says he enjoys playing the latter type of shows, where they get to win over new people, as much as their own headline shows where they play to their own fans.
“Yes, very excited, it’s been six months or so since we’ve been over (east), it’s always good to get out and about, and play some gigs to less familiar people,” he enthuses, “We always try to incorporate those type of shows into our tours. It’s a good way to get out there and try and get some new fans. Hopefully they don’t hate us!” He adds, laughing.
While there is nothing set in stone at this stage, the band have ambitions to get overseas again at some stage, hopefully by the end of this year.
“Yeah, that’s the idea,” he responds, “the bank account certainly says otherwise! But we’ll definitely be trying to get our arses over there. We haven’t been overseas since 2009 I think. We’d love to do Progpower, we’ll do anything we can get, so throw those offers at us everybody!”
COLLIDING SKIES AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES:
20.03.2015 – Amplifier Bar, Perth WA [18+]
21.03.2015 – The Espy, Melbourne VIC [18+]
26.03.2015 – Woy Woy Leagues Club, Woy Woy NSW[18+]
27.03.2015 – Bald Faced Stag, Sydney NSW [18+]
28.03.2015 – New Globe Theatre, Brisbane QLD [18+]