Q: I love this track and how the slow distorted instrumental slowly builds up pace. Can you walk me through your creative process on making “NOSEDIIV”?
Volleyball: Ohh thankssss <3, sure. Having been exploring the internet in search of some strange / interesting sounds…I plucked a few percussion loops and put them together with some drum loops – they were kind of an unlikely combination but can tweak them slightly in Ableton so the grooves match each other. From there, I picked up the guitar and wanted to react to the rhythms and match them in some way – that’s where the first flicky riff part appeared from. The basslines were the basis of the chords, I just wanted them to sound luxurious like an exotic garden. A few of the drops were just trying to be dramatic with it, like walking around the corner and stumbling across a waterfall in the middle of Dalson or something.
Q: What was your favorite memory while making this track?
Volleyball: The ideas for the instrumental came mostly from one session, other than slicing it up a bit for some structure tweaks. A great breakthrough moment was definitely layering the vocals – they were more of a background part in the demo. When I went to track them properly for the track – it was a hot day in the middle of the first lockdown, I had time to go to town on stacking the harmonies and thought I’d try and put in as many notes and drones as I could. What came out was kind of a surprise – love that about music, even a song you’ve been working on and heard hundreds of times can surprise you.
Q: Were you influenced by old records & tapes growing up? Which ones?
Volleyball: My dad was always playing The Beatles, if you’ve ever heard of them. Everyone could probably say…a more interesting one which I dug out recently is Plantasia by Mort Garson. It’s an album for plants, but humans are allowed to listen as well, on sundays.
Q: I read that you are getting ready to tour again and include a VR experience. What can audiences expect from that?
Volleyball: We are part of a creative music / tech collective called The Rattle. A friend we met there has started a project called Volta. It creates a VR environment that reacts to the music and is controllable like an instrument.
Q: What do you enjoy most about being a musician? What do you hate most?
Volleyball The best thing is the variety & freedom, being able to collaborate with different artists and having each day be different. On a more philosophical scale, music and art is something that we believe has a profound impact on people’s lives. Sometimes it’s easy to forget – getting caught up in the general process of surviving / making a living / paying the rent or mortgage etc etc. The time we are able to dedicate to creating these moments is something we are all really proud of. The worst thing, hmmm there arent many but probably the uncertainty about paychecks, but that’s more a freelance thing then musician thing! Oh and wanting to buy all the music gear and instruments, but not being able to!
Q: What was the first instrument you ever learned to play?
Volleyball: [Hugh]: It was the guitar, my dad plays and always has his guitars lying about the house. So naturally it wasn’t long until I picked one up and started teaching myself, mainly by listening to old blues records.
[Rudi]: Same for me; I started playing guitar when a friend brought one into school and showed me some Nirvana riffs.
Q: Who would you most like to collaborate with, if it could be anyone in the world?
Volleyball:: We’d love to collaborate with Tetsunori Tawaraya, he’s one of our favourite illustrators and think a video / live visuals / merch / anything at all would be sickkkkkk. Music wise – I love Little Dragon’s voice and vibe. That would be another dream.
Check out Volleyball’s game on their website: volleyballmusic.com/game
Interviewed by Melissa Cusano