Our Spotlight series continues with a focus close to home this month, as we caught up with Philadelphia’s up-and-coming post-hardcore quintet, Quiet Arcs for a quick interview. The band has been garnering the attention of music fans and fellow musicians with a heartfelt delivery that has seen live performances with leading locals and touring nationals. Combining elements of early 90’s grunge and melodic hardcore with the rock elements of Melvins and Black Sabbath, the band remains somewhat indefinable, as each track takes on a life of its own. The band is firm believer in the DIY ethics of punk culture, paying out of pocket to record and offering all of their material for free online. Quiet Arcs released their latest EP, Morphine Derivatives, earlier this week, which is streaming in its entirety below. Without further ado, let’s hear from the band.
Joshua BTS: Greetings! Thank you for taking time to answer a few questions for Blow The Scene readers around the World! Let’s begin by having you introduce yourself and declare your onstage weapon of choice with the Philadelphia-based post-hardcore quintet, Quiet Arcs.
My name is Larry and I sing for Quiet Arcs. Jude and Jack play guitar, Donny plays band and Kenny plays drums.
Joshua BTS: Quiet Arcs has been pummeling basements and venues throughout the Philadelphia area for the past year, playing with local and national acts. Take us back to the formative period. How did the project come into fruition and are the original members all still active with the band?
Larry: Jude, Kenny and I were doing a band called Aneurysm Rats that had more or less broken up. We wanted to continue playing together so we started writing new material with Donny. Jude and I had played in Crumbler with him. Originally, the other guitar player from Aneurysm Rats, Greg, was going to play with us. But with a full time job and two kids, he couldn’t do the band. Soon after, we asked my old roommate Jack if he had any interest in playing, he did. All of the recordings and live shows have been with that line up.
Joshua BTS: Your latest recorded effort Morphine Derivatives is now streaming and available for pay-what-you-want at the Quiet Arcs bandcamp and featured below this interview. Give us the skinny on this release- When, where, and whom did you record with?
Larry: We recorded with Will Yip at Studio 4 in Conshohocken at the end of June. Will recorded, mixed, mastered and helped us produce Morphine Derivatives as well as our two previous releases. I’ve been pretty lucky, Will is the only person I’ve ever recorded with. And as far as I’m concerned the only person I’ll ever record with. I just wish he would let us go back to recording in his parent’s basement.
Joshua BTS: Your sound has been compared to everything from Coliseum to Black Sabbath. How would you describe Quiet Arcs’ approach to creating music and who are some of your immediate influences?
Larry: Our writing process is simple. Donny, Jack or Jude bring a riff to practice and we jam on it while saying quotes from Step Brothers and MacGruber. The song is constantly changing and evolving all the way up until the last practice before we go into record it. Any and all ideas we try out to see if it works. Our influences are all over the place. I’d say common ones for all five of us would be Black Flag, Nirvana, Swiz, Ink and Dagger, Helmet and the Melvins.
Larry: All of the great bands that are from this area we get to share a stage with. All of the bands from the past that came from the Philadelphia area that paved the way. Namely Prema, Ink and Dagger and Christ.
Joshua BTS: Least favorite aspects of being in a band based out of Philadelphia?
Larry: Those bands mentioned above are no longer together.
Joshua BTS: What can fans expect from Quiet Arcs as we approach 2012? Any tour plans or more releases in the works?
Larry: We are lined up to do a four way split before the end of 2011. So far it’s us and Changes, I don’t know if the other bands have been decided. Other than that keep writing and try to record as soon as possible. We have no plans for touring. In the very beginning of the band, we talked about everyone’s expectations as far as touring and no one wanted to.
Joshua BTS: Why the decision to release all of your material for free? Have you found this to be an effective means of getting a buzz going for the band? And are you able to recoup expenses?
Larry: The five of us were paying out of pocket for the recording to begin with so why wait on a label to put it out. Will sends us the final mix and master, we listen to it. Then put it up on the internet, there is little to no waiting period. We don’t recoup any of the expenses. All of us set aside money in the months prior to recording. I don’t want to say this our “hobby” because it’s way more than that. But it is what gets us out of the house, its fun, its an outlet. We do it because we love it. I, personally, have no problem putting up money to do Quiet Arcs. I do recoup the money, but not with money in my pocket. I get way more out of it then money.
Joshua BTS: Do you foresee a time a time when it may no longer be beneficial for the band to release your music for free or is this a driving factor behind the band?
Larry: Nope. The five of us are adults with full time jobs. Setting aside a few bucks a week isn’t a problem and I don’t ever foresee it being a problem.
Larry: It’s about the little things that get you through the day. Everything in your life that puts a smile on your face and helps you get out of bed in the morning.
Joshua BTS: What are some of the lyrical focuses listeners will fin on Morphine Derivatives?
Larry: All of the lyrics are personal. I like to joke saying that I write love songs. Whether its about past and present experiences with friends, family, loved ones, I obviously cared enough to write a song about it. So in a way they kind of are.
Joshua BTS: Best place for fans to keep up with Quiet Arcs online?
Joshua BTS: Thank you kindly for taking a few minutes with Blow The Scene readers from around the world as we look forward to keeping up with your future endeavors. Final Thoughts?
Thanks for the interview. If you got time check out these bands…. American Royalty and Snake Road from Philly. Changes from New Jersey. Boatrocker from Delaware.
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