Jersey-based modern rock band, Dream Eternal Bliss, aren’t shy about making their debut in a crowded indie music space. In fact, they’re pretty confident (and so are we) that their future in the music industry is very promising. In this exclusive interview with Scott Kahn of DEB, we get to know a lot about this soon to be household name.
How did the band Dream Eternal Bliss form?
Derek Davodowich (guitars) and I had been co-guitarists in the progressive rock band, Days Before Tomorrow. DBT was no longer together, we wanted to make new music together, and I wanted to put down my guitar and focus on my keyboard playing in a live setting as opposed to just doing studio production work, as I’d done for more than a decade. We decided it would be fun to make music that embraced our love of new wave and pop for a change, but still keep the focus on serious musicianship and having stellar guitar work.
The musician lineup came together pretty quickly through referrals from various musician friends. When I told my friend Dave Sempier (Untitled Art, Five Star Dive) about the new band, he connected me with one of his former bandmates, who had drummed for Myke Hideous (Misfits, Spy Society) — he knew we’d be a perfect fit without having ever played together, and he was totally right!
We did a typical craigslist search for singers and went through a formal audition process, which resulted in multiple singers who wanted the opportunity to sing the music we were creating… and mostly it was about the idea of singing it, because we hadn’t written much as of audition time. Choosing a singer was the toughest part, as each of three “semi-finalists” had distinctly different types of voices, and differing levels of experience. We took a chance on the one with the least experience of the lot, Carrie Edwards, because we loved her voice. She didn’t sound like all the other slick pop singers on the radio today, and she had a gift for writing creative vocal melodies.
What’s the title of your latest EP/LP/or single, and what can people expect to hear?
On the debut Dream Eternal Bliss EP, people will hear melodic pop rock with a variety of ‘80s new wave influences here and there, but the band never sounds like it is emulating the past. The songwriting is fresh, with modern production values. Innovate; not emulate is the guiding voice here. A nod to the past, a sound for tomorrow. We don’t follow popular trends, so you might need a few listens to really embrace the subtleties below the surface of the songs. But it’s catchy, melodic stuff. Some of it will have you fist pumping and singing along with us.
When you approached the creative process for this release, why was it important to keep with the classic 80s New Wave/Modern Rock sound?
We embraced the big keyboard/synth sounds of the ‘80s, but most bands from that era lacked serious guitar work. And today, there are lots of synth pop bands that also wouldn’t know a guitar if it hit them upside the head. We loved specific classic bands like Berlin, Roxette, Simple Minds, Duran Duran, and Tears for Fears because they knew how to create catchy music that had big keyboards AND big guitars. But it’s their vibe and attitude we embraced. Our style of songwriting is more… us. Interestingly, all of those bands continued to innovate and outlive their new wave origins.
Which song would you say is the most personal one on this project, and why is it so personal to you?
Probably the two would be “This Time” and “Unfamiliar Faces” because they had their roots in songs I wrote years ago. “This Time” came from a very personal place in the life of someone close to me, while “Unfamiliar Faces” was me thinking about the loneliness of fame, working my whole live trying to achieve a level of artistic success that makes you question why you cared about the adoration of strangers in the first place. Ironically, this was written more than a decade before social media enabled everyone to share their lives with strangers.
If I’m a music fan, why should I support your music over the kajillion other bands out there?
It’s pure, from the heart, and not trying to sound like everyone else. I recently heard someone describe our music as sounding “organic,” because so many pop records are produced to a level of quantized perfection, or recorded with programed drum beats and programmed bass lines, and they don’t have the human connection of classic rock and pop music. Songs from the ‘60s, ‘70s, and the ‘80s were performed by live players. Even with lots of layers of orchestration, the core of the music was real players playing their instruments. And that human element created music that stood the test of time. We’re risking our fate on creating new music with a nod to the past and a modern style, while ignoring popular trends and fads.
Connect with Dream Eternal Bliss online at Facebook.com/dreameternalbliss