Q1. Thank you for taking your time. Firstly, how did Ides of Gemini become a band?
Sera and I started Ides Of Gemini in 2010 after her previous band Black Math Horseman was supposed to play the Roadburn festival in Holland but was prevented from flying over when that huge Icelandic volcano blew up and stopped all international air travel for several weeks. I was working as a roadie for Black Math Horseman at that time, and we were literally on the airplane ready to take off when they pulled everyone off the plane and cancelled the flight. When it became clear that we would be stuck at home in Los Angeles for a while, Sera and I started working on the songs that would become our first EP, The Disruption Writ. (※1)
Q2. Where are all you originally from? And Where’s Ides of Gemini located at these days?
Sera (vocals & bass) is from the Santa Cruz Mountains in Northern California. Kelly (drums) is from Detroit. I’m from Massachusetts. We all live in Los Angeles now.
Q3. Have you ever played in the band before Ides of Gemini?
Kelly and I haven’t, but Sera was in a couple of bands before.
Q4. Which bands and artists influenced all you as musicians?
I can’t speak for Sera & Kelly, but I enjoy the work of Philip Lynott, Richard Pryor, and Harry Crews.
Q5. You’ve been working as a journalist for a long time. Does that experience helping your band activity?
Working as a journalist, I’ve definitely met a few people who have ended up being very helpful to the band. But mostly my journalism experience has been useful in giving me a very clear idea of what I don’t like and what I don’t want Ides Of Gemini to be. Which thankfully still leaves plenty of possibilities.
Q6. You released split EP with Vermapyre in 2012, How did it come?
The split with Vermapyre happened after I met and interviewed Dwid Hellion here in Los Angeles about his band Integrity. We ended up talking about the music we were working on, and I sent him some Ides Of Gemini songs to check out. He liked what he heard and suggested a split release with his new project, Vermapyre. He also convinced Brent Eyestone from Magic Bullet Records to release it. (※2)
Q7. Ides of Gemini is often related with black metal. And also I heard someone called “dreamy doom”. How would you describe the sound of Ides of Gemini?
I do my best not to describe it at all. Luckily, I don’t have to write any articles about Ides Of Gemini, so I figure describing our music is someone else’s job.
Q8. What is the songwriting process in the band? Is it a group collective or is it down to one individual.
It’s collective, but for the most part we each write separately. I usually write all the guitar parts first and record a basic arrangement to a click track. Then Kelly and Sera write their parts and we practice everything together until it sounds right.
Q9. Ides of Gemini did North America tour with Ghost last year. How was it? Did you enjoy it?
It was fantastic. The Ghost guys are super cool and treated us really well. In terms of playing to a wider audience, it was like hitting the lottery. We were playing 500- to 1500-capacity clubs or theaters every night, and most of the shows were sold out. Almost all of the shows were all-ages and most of the time we were the only opener, so we had the opportunity to play in front of a lot of people who were very receptive to our music. It was a once in a lifetime experience, basically, and we are forever grateful to Ghost for the opportunity.
Q10.Which bands and artists albums are you currently enjoying? Any recommendations you can give to our readers for
bands to check out.
I’m listening to Tears For Fears’ The Hurting as I type this, but that’s an old one. Some of my current favorites are the new In Solitude album (Sister), the new Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats (Mind Control) and the new 7-inch from a band called Persekutor.
Q11. You released stuff in many ways. Cassette, CD, digital download and vinyl. What are your preferences for listening to music?
It totally depends on the situation. In general, I prefer vinyl, which I listen to at home whenever possible. But vinyl doesn’t really work too well when you’re on tour or out of the house. We have a cassette player in the van, so we listen to a lot of old tapes or just plug in someone’s iPod. I think it’s safe to say we’re fans of all three formats.
Q12.Do you have any plans for 2014?
We’ll be heading into the studio next week to record our next album, which should be out in September. We also hope to start touring again in the fall. In the meantime, we’re playing the Doom In June festival in Las Vegas. We’ll also probably have a few other surprises before the new album comes out.
Q13. Finally, would you like to send a message to Japanese fans?
One of our biggest dreams is to fly over and play shows in Japan. Hopefully we’ll make it over there soon!