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RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW CAMBRIDGE BAND EMBER REV

What made you decide to start the band / become a soloist?

Ember Rev came together in 2016 to play the songs of Cambridge-based singer-songwriter Dan Ecclestone. 

Introduce us all to the members and your musical history?

Dan plays guitar and sings, Chris plays accordion, Dom plays bass and David plays drums. We’ve been known to play acoustic sets from time to time, and when we do that Dom swaps out his bass for a truly unique beast; the bass mandolin…

What’s the best piece of advice you have received?

Don’t wait to be asked! I took it as meaning play your music the way you want to….

Did you buy anything you don’t need in the pandemic? If so what?

I have a weakness for analogue synths and keep threatening to fill our songs with them… I bought a Korg Monologue which makes some seriously squelchy noises and you can hear bits of that on the new album..

Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories? 

That the world is meritocratic? That streaming platforms might actually generate some cash?

What useless party trick/talent do you have/? 

Pass…

What was the most fun you have had on stage?

It’s always fun onstage so long as you can hear yourself; whenever someone has spontaneously joined us on stage I’ve tended to enjoy it… I guess my dream gig would be something like Talking Heads’ Stop Making Sense in which the stage gradually fills with more and more people, more and more gear, and more and more energy!



What was the worst experience on stage?

See above. When I can’t hear myself. And when I’ve fallen off the front of the stage, that was pretty bad!

If you had to describe your band to an alien how would you describe them? 

Earth-based Alternative Art Rock

What advice would you give someone going into the music industry?

I’d probably give the advice that I never followed but probably should have: to produce what people want to hear. Audiences tend to have a pretty clear idea of what they wanna hear and so sonic experimentations of a truly original kind should be attempted with extreme caution!

What’s your biggest achievement as a band/Artist?

We were beyond chuffed when German Shepherd Records took us on… 

What makes you stand out as a band/Artist?

The accordion added to the mix makes us sound kind of unique. I loved Arcade Fire’s first album which was full of accordions, violins, clarinets, and that sort of klezmer / cajun vibe

Right now, what’s pissing you off the most?

Making abbreviated radio edits of our typically very long songs!

I hear you have a new album brewing, what can you tell us about it?

Isolophilia has been a couple of years in the making and has been the ultimate lockdown project; conceived in a few rehearsals early in 2020 then slowly recorded separately, track by track. As a result it’s a big widescreen production, with a lot of detail in there, a lot of overdubs, a lot of sonic processing! We’re really pleased with it but have no idea how it’ll be received….

Talk me through the thought process of the /album?

Well, the lyrics flowed from the cover art, a photo I found of a house in the mountains. I imagined this to be the home of a sort of deluded landowner, a sort of King Canute, issuing orders to his lowly tenant farmers. And come to think of it, I probably was starting to feel a bit that way myself, stuck in lockdown, disappearing from the outside world but trying to keep unruly kids and pets in check! So in each of the songs you have a sort of vignette, an imagined scene between the various people living in the valley.

What was the recording process like?

The recording process was challenging as we were figuring the songs out as we went along. Previously we’ve gigged songs before recording them but in this we were forced, by lockdown, to work separately and as a result, things developed in new and interesting ways. It was slow, but creative and rewarding.

Why record an album? A lot of artists are going down the road of regular singles, just interested in your thoughts on committing to an album right now.?

Ah, if you’re above a certain age you’re always gonna love the album format. The music we grew up listening to was from albums and some of the best albums have a kind of thread, a sort of vague theme or narrative that pull the songs together. I shouldn’t think we’ll be producing albums forever as things have moved on but I still love the challenge; the massive commitment needed!

What was the biggest learning curve in writing the album?

Well, we tried a lot of online jamming that required super-fast connections and still didn’t really work. We set up a GoogleDrive and learned Reaper, the online digital audio workstation. 

Would you change anything now it’s finished?

No, we’re really happy with it. 

What are your plans for the year ahead?

To get out there and play the damn thing… we’ve been in the long grass for a few years now and want to rebuild as a live band

Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?

Less is not always more – fill your world with overdubs and layers of wonder….

Thanks for doing us today folks, all the best and keep in touch.



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