With their new album, Posphenes, Imperial China brings precision and grace to rock hard rock outs- kind of like executing a flawless swan dive into a lava pit. Let’s all have a listen, shall we?
Bananamite epitomizes much of what we were trying to do with this album. We really wanted to expand on the more punk-ish electronic stuff we did on our EP in 2008. So, like many of our songs, it started with a loop, and we tried to build the song from there. I wrote and sampled this high-pitched loop that sort of reminded us of a 50’s sci-fi movie with a flying saucer swinging down from the sky on a string. Our drummer realized that it actually played along to the rhythm of a really fast salsa beat, so we thought doing just a drum and bass thing would give it a different sound than most of our other songs. With the vocals sounding sort of spacey and even a little reggae, we thought it would be a fun song to incorporate into the set occasionally. I think we’ve basically played it almost every set we’ve ever played since then.
This song also started with the backing loop, which has a somewhat industrial feel. The song probably could have gone a number of directions from there, but we thought the beat we ended up using really commanded a post-punk kind of sound. It’s also one of only two instrumental tracks on our album, which is a movement away from our original approach as a band. We were initially conceived as more of an instrumental band, and we just had more songs with vocals as time went on. However, on this track, we didn’t include vocals, as we figured they might only take away from the other parts of the song.
Go Where Airplanes Go
This was our attempt at writing something pretty. It is probably the most atypical song we’ve ever written in that most of the song was written before drums were even added. Usually, drums are so integral to everything we’re trying to do. It was also the first song in which I actually tried to “sing.”
Letter of a General
Letter of a General was actually one of the first songs we ever wrote together. In fact, Matt and I wrote it in late 2006 before we even had a drummer. The song has taken various forms since then. When Patrick completed the band by joining on drums in early 2007, we changed the ending to include the random noise direction it eventually goes now. Then during the process of recording the song, we wanted to make it a little more tribal as well, so we added a steady pulsating beat give some depth to the percussion. Overall, I think it added a lot to the intensity of the song that we were trying to do.
Imperial China plays Velvet Lounge tonight with Cephalopoda, Lo Moda, and Busses