RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW SOUTHAMPTON’S ZEN JUDDHISM
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide to start this project?
I’d been in a band for a few years where I didn’t get to write any songs for it. When that ended I thought I’d start a project based around my material.
Introduce us to you and other members and your musical history?
I’m Jude One Eight, songwriter and guitarist and, on the recordings, the bassist. I’ve previously been on guitar in the bands HYBRID 6.0, Le Lizard Royale and Jimmy B and the Death Rattles. Craig Sepala played almost all the drums on the new album. Hannah Aurora Black, who also used to be in JB&tDR, plays bass with us at gigs, with Craig Sepala on drums. Up front, Opkar Hans who fronts Kinesis 4 joins us on vocals. Pammie is a recording artist and joins us when she’s not being a LIPA student these days, and Naomi Terry has an alter ego in Kinki and is a vocal coach.
What’s one question you’re sick of being asked when interviewed?
I don’t really get interviewed enough to have a real answer to that. I guess being asked what inspires my songs is odd because to me I don’t see how the answer is ever not going to be life experiences and artistic influences.
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories?
In the broad sense the short answer is yes. The official stories of 9/11 and JFK’s assassination are obviously false. And governments and their agencies are totally covering up the truth about UFOs and the existence of ETs (and their collusions with some!).
What useless party trick do you have? If I blink hard my eyelids can stay tucked in for a short while.
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
Probably the last gig we did at The Hobbit pub in Southampton the day after the new album came out. It had been a while since playing there, and just playing live in general, the big lively crowd were great and it was nice to play some of the new songs for the first time.
What was the worst experience on stage? Once fairly early on in the first song of a set my amp cut out. Felt pretty disastrous at the time. Managed to sort it by the time we got to the chorus though.
Tell us something about you or any band members that you think people would be surprised about?
I don’t actually know much about Star Wars. Opkar is the biggest ABBA fan I know. Naomi is a really good tap dancer. Pammie can do an accurate Lady Gaga impersonation.
If you had to describe your music to an alien how would you describe it?
Apparently a lot of aliens are telepathic so I wouldn’t have to. But in the past I’ve said it’s designer rock, or Itchen delta post-punk blues rock.
What makes you stand out as a band?
I think the variety in song styles and having different lead vocals within the same album or live set is quite different.
Right now, what’s pissing you off the most? (Can’t say the virus )
Probably just governments in general with their corruption and self-serving politicians.
What’s your favourite song to play live and why?
That’s a tough one. It’s new but I think in time it could be “Sing My Song”. Up to now though I’d probably say “Private Banks (So Cold)” cos people seem to go mad for it whenever we play it.
I hear you have a new album, what can you tell us about it?
Yes. The new album is the third one and is called “Return of the Juddha”. It has 11 songs, all recorded locally at River Studios in Southampton.
Talk me through the thought process of the album?
After the second album I knew I wanted to get round to recording some songs I’d penned a few years ago. There’s seven of those on the album and four relatively recent compositions. I didn’t mind this album being a bit less sonically diverse than the previous one, but it still has a good amount of the trademark Zen Juddhism variety, and all in 432Hz tuning.
What was the recording process like?
It was fairly straightforward which was good. There was a bit of a spanner in the works when the producer working on this, Will Davies, was hospitalised with injuries from being shockingly assaulted while out in Winchester of all places. Thankfully he avoided any serious harm and recovered well enough to get back into the studio not too many weeks after.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the album?
I don’t think I learned anything which is just how I roll. Joking aside, I found again it’s important to not be flippant with making a demo. Also, “Love Will Save The Day” was initially my entry to be the UK’s Eurovision entry a few years back, so that was interesting to have to make a song you’d imagine being likeable by many and fitting under 3 minutes, as was the rule at the time.
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
Not really. In hindsight I can think of a few tweaks maybe in some of the post production/mixing in bits of a few tracks. But I’m happy with how it turned out.
What are your plans for the year ahead?
Aiming to play some more gigs and release a few music videos.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
Yes. Help out the unsigned bands/artists you like by buying merch, physical music or downloads (in that order of preference). Streaming gives next to nothing back to artists. If you don’t have a lot of money, sharing videos/links/posts and liking posts is free and still helps.