The guys from Quaoar have a very interesting and eclectic approach to rock! I was lucky enough to receive an e-mail from them and, once I gave a listen, I had to have a chat with at least one member. Íñigo offered and this is how the conversation below was born, one evening on Facebook. I’m specifically not saying too much about them and their style, because I’d like for you to discover them through the interview below and the Bandcamp link posted under. Enjoy!
Alexandra: First of all I’m really curious about the name of the band and where it came from, or how you guys came up with it?
Íñigo: A previous singer of the band, back in 2002, was an astrology fan. Back then he heard in the news that they had just discovered a new little planet called Quaoar, and at that moment they were doing a strange style between death metal and progressive metal, they thought that that strange name fit perfectly with the band’s style. And also they thought that nobody would have that name already.
Oh I see! How about the logo? I also wondered about that one!
We have two friends (in fact they are twins) and we know their work since years ago. We knew they were very flexible and we told them we wanted a new logo and maybe a symbol. We told them also that we wanted something grunge and simple, showed them some logos we like and this is the result. Their artistic name are sparganum and this is their website http://www.sparganumart.tk/ .
Awesome that you’re crediting them, I’ll check them out! By the way since you were mentioning earlier that there was another vocalist before you, when and how did you join the band?
Well, back in 2006 Quaoar‘s bass player was another one, and that guy (by the way, he is the one who played bass in our first record “Man’t”) was playing with me in another band (thrash progressive band) and he told me about Quaoar. They had had other two previous singers and both of them were “growl singers”, and they were looking for new things and looking for a new vocalist who could fit their new tastes (Porcupine Tree, Anathema, etc…), a more melodic singer. I arrived there with my acoustic guitar and played and sang a few Beatles and Queen songs for them. They accepted me and since then I assisted to the rehearsals recording the instrumental songs in a tape in order to go home and write new vocal lines and lyrics.
Oh nice! And since you mention the very different style of the previous singers I was wondering now that you are in the band what are your parts in the creation of the songs?
On the first record I only made the vocal lines and the lyrics. For “The River & The Soul” and “Dreamers. Dreaming” I have written lots of songs or parts of songs, more than half of them I think. For the ones that are not mine I always write the lyrics and compose the vocal melodies.
Where do you get inspiration from?
For the music part sometimes you find inspiration from how do you feel at one particular moment and you kinda find yourself singing a melody; sometimes you are hearing a song that brings you in a particular mood and you completely soak that in and then you arrive home or you go to a silent place where you can get that thing out and a new song, riff, melody or part is born. I get inspiration from life itself or from another songs or artists, I think for writing the lyrics it’s more complicated. Generally I know what I do want to say in a particular song but maybe I don’t know HOW to say it.
I think that’s a thing many artists struggle with!
Yeah, I think so! So I have to study the different moods that the particular song travels by and find my way to take advantage of that in order to say the correct things in the correct time of the song. That’s tricky!
Yes of course and I’m always wondering if fellow artists get the thing that they heard in their heads exactly right in the shape of a song? For example I’m a photographer as well and 99% of the time when I have a photo in mind as a concept and I try to get it exactly like that it never works..not exactly like that.
That’s very difficult, yes! For me as a part of a band (with four more members) it is even more difficult. I have to explain to them what my ears expect to hear.
You mean the fact that you have to consider the rest as well?
Yes! It’s not only a problem of mine, it’s something that every member has to deal with. Information gets lost travelling from me to the other guys in the band, but on the other hand, this is something that I really love too! This way, they can add their own soul into something that was born in mine and usually they add something great and new!
And since we’re on the topic of inspirations for ‘Dreamers.Dreaming’, did you guys use any artists as inspiration? I found myself thinking the record has some sort of American influence.
You know, it’s very difficult to tell you specific artists that have influenced us to make this particular record but, yes! This record was made thinking about grunge and 70’s music but also thinking about Opeth, Porcupine Tree, The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel you know, I pay attention especially to the structure of the songs I hear. That is the most important thing I think a song has to have: an interesting structure. Original structures blow my mind away, I truly admire these kind of things!
And of course I assume interesting has a different meaning for everyone in the band!
Yeah, that’s it! A couple of guys in the band were really bored of long songs, so writing short songs became kind of a challenge for us, which we are still struggling with.
So is that why the record’s song lengths are fluctuating?
Yeah, that’s the reason why! We like both long and short songs and we don’t want to be seen as a band that always writes long songs, we want to be seen as a band that writes cool songs, not mattering if they are long, short, heavy or ballads. Like the Beatles‘ ‘White’ album, you find a lot of styles in that album and it is awesome as a whole!
I understand what you mean..and while we’re on that topic I saw you got some good grades from reviewers but what did the rest of the audience say about the album?
I think 99% of people who have heard our record liked it. Many of them love it and there are strange people that actually think that we are the best band ever, haha, that’s funny! We aspire to get to new audiences, that’s the aim now!
That’s a super huge compliment!
Yeah, that’s THE compliment!
How are you planning to get new audiences at the moment?
Well, we often see other bands that have just started to play a year ago or only have one record and they are playing around Europe and getting to bigger audiences. What’s the difference between us and them (Pink floyd rules!)? They have a sponsor, a label, a promotion agency.. We want to get something like that. We are trying to find an agency or a manager who has the contacts to move this “product”. We are willing and able!
I’m sure that you will get something! It seems you guys are willing to put in the work to get it done and that’s what labels are looking for usually (apart from talent and stuff)!
Yes! We are not afraid to work. It’s our dream, and, as you know, we are dreamers.
Since it seems that every one of your albums so far tackled a few different genres, is there a plan for the next record?
There is not a specific plan, we have a few songs half done. In fact, “Dreamers. Dreaming” was initially meant to be a double record so we have like 9 more songs halfway done, but they are very different; some of them are long and more progressive, and then we have more rock songs, it depends on the inspiration. Maybe we will finish one or another song, I don’t know. We will see!
I’m looking forward to hearing it! I wanted to take you a bit back in time and ask how did your journey with music start?
Well, I was sixteen and a friend of mine showed me Metallica and he could play “One” and “Nothing else Matters” on a Spanish guitar, so I wanted to do that too. In three months a good friend of mine asked me to join his band to play in a school festival, so I did, and since then I have always been in a band you know, nothing mysterious!
Were you a vocalist for all of them?
Almost, yes. In fact, nobody in my first band (named Assphyxia, by the way) wanted to sing. So I started to sing and everybody was looking at me strangely like saying”Hey man, you know how to sing” and I was thinking “Yeah, you don’t” haha. I always sing in almost all the bands I am in, except for a band called James Room & Weird Antiqua. My brother is the singer and main composer and I play the drum and we play Americana kind of music.
That’s a cute name!
Yeah, it’s very funny, in fact the guitar player in James Room is the bass player of Quaoar, we are family!
So this is like a side project?
Yes, of course. In a week we will play there with The Delta Saints, so we are a serious band too as you can see!
Good luck at your concert, these were all my questions, thank you so much for your time! Do you have any last words for our readers?
Thank you so much for your work and interest! I only have a suggestion for your readers: just check out “Dreamers. Dreaming” and give us a chance. You will not regret it! Find us in facebook.com/QuaoarBand or in www.quaoarband.com