Tuesday, March 22, 2011

An interview with Aeris Kurtis Finch from Stoned Moses

I'm always on the hunt for new music. Good music. Something that gets my feet moving or my heart racing. Well i was having a beer at the Roxy watching a cheesy Superanova show. Watching band after band go up and play a few songs, trying their best to involve the crowd. There was a lot of people there, sitting in chairs, having a few beers. Yet, they didn't seem to be interested in the bands. It got me wondering.. what were they waiting for? Well when the last band got up and started setting up.. my question was answered. the whole crowd was there to see one band. A band from Mission, called Stoned Moses. They played a rocking set. A mixture of funk, reggae and rock. The whole crowd knew every word, every breakdown, and danced through their whole set. Only after the show did i realize that most of the crowd had come all the way from MISSION to see the band.... I hunted their lead singer, Aeris Kurtis Finch, down and tried to find out the details behind his amazing band.

James: So how did the band get together?
Aeris: I noticed Tyrone Barnes had some pictures of himself playing guitar on his facebook. I peer tutored him back in high school and knew he was a tight cat. I invited him to come jam at my good friend Josh Vonhardenburgs house. Josh had a makeshift studio and was willing to let me form a band there and record us for free. Me and Ty hit it off hard just jamming psychedelic tunes and formed a harsh musical connection. Tyrone luckily knew a bassist named Mitch Black. Mitch just came back from Montreal and joined our force. After that Brandon Wood a locally talented drummer joined us. Tyrone and Mitch knew two twin sax players (Quincy and Karson Welch) who had a huge knack for improve. We had a massively successful jam. We started out calling ourselves the "Harsh Mellows" but there was already too many bands named that. So Stoned Moses was born... Brandon had too many personal things going for him. Our band needed steadfast dedication and more connection from our drummer. Isaac helms returned from tree planting and the day he stepped foot in Mission he became our new drummer. Our djembe playing Jerrett Ross was my best friend since birth so he naturally joined the forces once we became a solid unit. Through connections with the Vancouver scene we collaborate a lot with local MC's Deedz The Droid and P Shiggz.

J: So what does the name mean? Is it anti religious?
A: Dude, I'm just straight up going to copy and paste from the definition from the Urban Dictionary..

Verb: The action in which a group of pedestrians, waiting at the crosswalk is lead by a single vigilante pedestrian across the intersection during a "do not cross" period.

A qualified moses must be transpired before the cross walk indicator turns green when the mosecian is at halfway point between the sidewalks, or middle of the intersection.

Egs: 1) That rebel just pulled a moses on us, and now we're going to get run over
       2) Dude, I'm going to pull a moses and stop traffic

J: And a stoned moses makes it soo much better.
A: Definitely.

J: So how do you guys write songs?
A: We are all over the map on that aspect. A lot of the time it starts with a riff Tyrone comes up with. Sometimes he also comes up with a vocal melody as well and we just go from there with that feeling. I start singing some lyrics that form in my head to match the feeling. Mitch is a harsh prodigy on the bass so a killer line is never far off. once we capture a feeling and jam it over a couple times then we start working on structuring it, Chorus's, solo's and bridges. Then we jam it over and mold it until its something we can work with. Lately I've been listening to the boys jam and have been writing lyrical content before i sing. So our 2nd album is definitely going to be a lot deeper with the structuring of the lyrics.

J: Sounds like quite the process. Tell me about the new album. How many songs? What kind of vibe?
A: We have demo tracks that are a shell of what our album is going to be at this moment. We are heading into Claymore Studios in Abbotsford to record 3 professional songs for the Vancouver Seeds. Then we are going to start hacking away at our full body of work. Album is going to be called Mellow Rebellion. We have about 11 songs and a couple interludes so far. We are confident its going to be something that you can pop into your CD player and listen top to bottom. The songs on it encompass everything we are as a band up until now. We are a psychedelic, reggae funk band and the album is going to be very versatile. We don't fit into just 1 niche, we try to avoid branding, so our tracks on this album are going to reflect the full electric nature of our band.

J: Stoked!! Should be very epic. When can i crank this in my car stereo?
A: If we can get our finances together I'm shooting for August!

J: You guys going to release it on Vinyl? apparently its all the rage right now.
A: Haven't even though about that yet.. hell ya though!! Hell ya!!

J: Do you have any upcoming shows?
A: Ya! We got April 15th at the Railway Club repping Brave New Waves massive double CD release. Ivy League Brawlers and the Get Down are also on the bill. We're helping headline an independent art festival in Victoria called "Live Alive-Explore The Obscure" It's a day/night art festival at Bastion Square with artists, poets, burlesque groups and more. Finally we have May 24th at the Roxy and June 3rd at Joe's Apartment with Satori Tide and perhaps another TBA.

J: Do you think its hard being a band from Mission?
A: With the Internet, social networking, and about 3 of our unit based outa Van City... not really. Mission has given us HUGE support and a really stable group of people who dig our tunes. We plan on trekking to Vancouver so we can experience the city vibe soon enough. Just gota kind the perfect place to live and jam.

J: Well all the best of luck to you guys. Any last words for our readers?
A: We are a live band first and foremost. WE are all about connecting to the audience. So come to one of our shows and dance on stage with us and get crazy! We consider the audience to be members of our band when we play shows, so lets see what you got to bring.

Be sure to check them out on myspace:

and search them on facebook! If you like dancing... check them out!

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