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Interview with Nocturne - Suburbia, Portland, OR - 3/9/97

Jester: How exactly did Nocturne begin?

Tadashi I was a bass player in a speed metal band and I was looking for something new. I heard that Jeff was a vocalist and we started working together. Then it took about eighteen months to find the right people to start the band. At the time the project didn't really have a band until all five of us were together.

Mark: I used to play in a variety of different musical projects from noise, all keyboards, tribal, to metal.

Jester: Why did you choose this particular genre of music rather than any of the others you had experience with in the past?

Jeff: We just all happen to come from a gothic background with other similar influences.

Mark: A lot of the more experimental stuff that Ashe and I were doing before was a lot of fun to play but really isn't that interesting live. So we decided to write a more pop structured type material for a live band.

Jester: I noticed that some of you style have other side projects and help out other bands during an occasional live show. I know that Mark has helped out Sumerland on occasion with drums.

Mark: Megan is actually a full member of Sumerland. However, I actually do sit in for a lot of other bands when their drummer cannot play.

Jester: Do you any of you have any type of musical training, or is it all self taught?

Tadashi I've always played guitar from rock, to blues, and even a speed metal rut.

Mark: I started playing drums in fourth grade so I have had years of formal training.

Ashe: I've had no instrumental traing but I did have some formal vocal training as a child but I never really use it. I also had a single guitar lesson.

Jester: For those of you who had training, do you find that it impinges on your ability to write this type of music?

Ashe: Definitely. I think that if I had more guitar training that I would not be as creative as would like to be.

Mark: I think that you can only go so far with training. Then you have to take what you have learned and expand upon it at a personal level to achieve any type of musical growth.

Jester: Do you actually write any of your music down or is it all memorized?

Ashe: Megan writes some of it down.

Mark: She just writes herself a chart to keep track of some of the more difficult material. However we don't use any DAT or sequences, so all of her keyboard parts are played live. Even in the studio, all of the electronic pieces are live and multi-tracked.

Jester: What type of music writing process do you use?

Mark: Anything goes. Some of the time we will start with a riff that gets lost by the end of the process. It all usually sums from brainstorming.

Jester: Do you draw any influences from other artists to write your music, or is most of your material original in nature?

Mark: The only time we draw influence from other artists is unintentionally.

Jester: What would you consider your largest influences?

Mark: I had a solo project that is a very political thing. All of the lyrics and samples are based generally on political issues revolving around class war. However this band is very apolitical.

Jeff: We really don't have any strong influence for making music in this project. It is mostly just an outlet form everyday events and concepts. Vocally I draw on bands like Fields of Nephilim as a style of singing, but that is about it.

Jester: I know that you have a four sing EP. What was the reason why you choose to press an four song CD rather than a full album?

Mark: Lack of material, money, and to aid us in soliciting a label for a record contract.

Ashe: Mostly money.

Jeff: We would have pressed a full length album if we had that much material at the time.

Mark: Mostly is was used for to and get us an album deal. We had only been together for about six months when we pressed it.

Jester: How long have you all been together?

Megan: About eighteen months.

Jester: Have you received any response from labels about the demo?

Mark: We have some really serious interest from a record label.

Ashe: We don't want to mention who it is on the grounds that it may incriminate us.

Mark: However we are submitting the a rough album to this particular label very soon and it is looking very positive.

Jester: Is this something that just happened recently?

Mark: All of it has happened within the past month. 45 days at the most.

Jester: Have you appeared on any compilations outside of your EP?

Mark: No, with the sole exception of the compilation you are putting out shortly.

Megan: We did try to submit a track for the Cleopatra: Siouxsie and The Banshees tribute, but we were too late.

Jeff: We actually recorded a cover song when we went in for mastering the EP, but it was much to late to submit a song by the time we found out they were looking for cover songs.

Mark: I almost forgot, we are going to be on the next KBOO: Church of the Northwest compilation.

Jester: I heard rumors that you will be going on tour across the United States shortly?

Mark: We are going to start with a West Coast tour and then head further inland. It is all a self booked tour.

Jeff: We will try and hook up with bands in various cities to open for us.

Mark: We try to setup a lot of shows for bands who tour through Portland. They end up getting better shows when we book them locally than if they went through a local venue. So we are talking with a lot of those bands to help us get shows in their home towns across the country.

Jester: How do these bands initially get in contact with you?

Mark: Rick from the Fenix Underground in Seattle will send them to us when they book a show so they can book a show here in Portland on the way through town.

Jeff: Locally the clubs also know that we are the people to talk to when it comes to booking this type of music.

Jester: How do you think the current music scene is fairing lately?

Mark: I think that there are always a few great bands around. The current direction of the scene seems to be less straight forward rock oriented. I'm trying to avoid the word "artsy", but that is what it is.

Jeff: It depends, we play shows where we know everyone in the room and then we'll play shows where we know hardly anyone.

Mark: I think that a lot of our scene is underage. So with Portland having so few under age venues it is difficult to get consistent draws.

Jester: Mark, you mentioned that you are on-line. Is there anything about the band on-line yet?

Mark: No, but I am working on it. I just a computer so I am just getting a web page together. It is taking foreever because I am stupid about such things. However, it will be done by the time we tour.

Jester: When is the tour supposed to start?

Mark: May 8th in Seattle.

Jester: Is there anything you'd like to add?

Mark: Just that we will be touring this spring and that we'd appreciate it if you would come and check us out if we happen to be playing in your town.

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