By Meghan Player
When it comes to hard, crunching, punishing riffs and growling vocals – look no further than local Sydney act, Lomera. Described as “what you would expect if Black Sabbath, Kyuss and Alice in Chains had a love child”, the band have been earning praise both locally and internationally for their debut, self titled EP. Meghan Player chatted to the band about their beginnings, influences and what the future holds.
– First things first – how did the band get together?
Reg and I [Matt] have known each other for some time and had always talked about doing something together. Reg started sending me demos of songs to work on and after about 6 months we had 12 songs. We put the band together and started gigging almost right away. Of those 12 songs we cut it down to 4 that would define where Lomera was going musically and things just went from there.
– Your sound is a mix between, what I would describe as Kyuss meets Alice in Chains – who are your influences as far as sound goes?
That’s pretty cool… Kyuss was a definite starting point for us along with bands like the Melvins, Doomriders, Down, Black Sabbath and others.
– How do you approach writing a track? Is it different for different songs/styles/sounds etc?
We demo EVERYTHING. Reg will demo a song idea and send it to me to work on vocals and sometimes arrangement, from there it goes to the band. The guys will always put their twist on it and we may make adjustments or work on any other ideas someone may have. It’s a great way to write and has helped us progress quicker than if we didn’t do it this way.
– Is there something that inspires you to write a particular track? Or does the influence/inspiration come from many different areas?
Musically, I think we are always trying to blend together that stoner rock groove, the sludge metal tones and Reggie’s punk rock roots. Lyrically, inspiration comes from anywhere and everywhere. I will look to books, television, the news, history, dreams, imagination and of course personal experience for lyric writing material – and I often use more than one theme or story in a single song. A song like ‘Hail the Storm’ is something that was inspired by National Geographic articles and watching the news. You only have to read the book ‘First Contact’ by Bob Connolly & Robin Anderson to understand where the narrative in ‘There Will Be Blood’ comes from. Songs like ‘Architect Vs Instrument’ & ‘No Way But The River’ both come from imagination and personal experience – I was able to meld a few different themes and stories into the songs.
– You’ve recently released your self-titled EP – which is a cracking listen – how have you found the reaction so far to the material?
Thank you, the reaction has been very positive. We are all very happy and proud of how the E.P. turned out, given the budget and time constraints. We all worked really hard to make it the best thing it could be and we want people to hear it. So far it seems that a lot of people like it, they see what we are trying to do sound wise which is great and in turn more people are coming to the shows.
– One of your tracks was recently played on Japanese radio – were you surprised by how far your music has reached?
Yeah, it’s pretty cool what we can do on a purely D.I.Y. level. There is a large audience that loves heavy music in places like Japan, Europe, the U.S. and Brazil, so with that in mind we always planned to send off the E.P. nationally and internationally and just see what would happen. It’s just as easy to mail a CD to Tokyo as it is to Melbourne so why not do it?
– You’re fairly active on Face book/Twitter etc, is it a good channel for a band to get their music ‘out there’?
I think social media is a good way of bringing it all together with like minded people, but it’s really only secondary to good ole’ fashion stamp licking – people love having the physical thing in their hands so I think it’s important to send a package out and email everybody you can. Well, that and lots of shows of course. I am quite impressed at how Band Camp operates as an outlet for music, both as an artist and a music buyer. It allows for more choice in how people want to get their music and the direct contact between artist and fan is pretty cool.
– With so many other bands out there in a similar situation to yourselves, how do you make yourselves ‘stand out’ from the crowd?
We don’t talk about that a great deal, we really just make a point of writing good songs. We try to make everything we do the best we can. It’s about having good songs, practicing a lot and playing well instead of relying on some shtick.
– You’ll be heading out on tour shortly – hitting up Brisbane and Melbourne – what are you looking forward to most about these dates? What can a crowd expect from your live set?
Brisbane is going to be a blast, can’t wait! I’ve got some family and friends there and I’ve been talking to Ryan from Crevis about it. Can’t wait to party with those guys. I think it is only since we recorded as a band that our live shows have really taken off, we seem to work with each other a whole lot better now and the last few shows have just really felt great.
We will be down to Melbourne later in the year, can’t wait for that. We have some great friends in Melbourne and have played with some cool bands like Broozer, Agonhymn, Abreact and a bunch of others. I’ve found Melbourne is very much a music town, we always enjoy our time there.
A Lomera show is loud and heavy that’s for damn sure, it’s about getting people moving.
– I also wanted to chat to you about your incredible album art work – how did you come across Glen Smith? Was it important for him to capture the band in that EP cover? [It is pretty incredible]
Glenno is awesome. He has done artwork for other bands that we really like such as Summonus, Looking Glass and the Slaughterfest artwork. I think Jason met him at his gallery show last year and it went from there. Rick spoke to him about what we were looking to capture in terms of it being something heavy, earthy, Australian, and how we wanted the cover to be a work of art in its own right. Glenno came back with the cover image and we were really blown away, the more I look at it the more I like it. I think there has been talk of doing a run of limited edition prints which will be pretty cool.
– What is next for the band? Are you working on a full length album?
Before this E.P. was released Lomera was relatively unheard of outside of the Sydney scene, so we are keen to do as many shows in as many different places as we can in support of the E.P. We will do another E.P. on our own this year. For a band like ours with the budget and time restraints we have a full length may be a bit too ambitious. I think we can do something much better than our debut for the next E.P, we have already got some really cool new songs, and we are looking forward to working on the next record.
– What is the one thing people should know about Lomera?
Hmmm, there are three.
Lomera is pronounced ‘Loh-meh-rah’.
Secondly, Jas is freakishly tall! He played basketball against that big Chinese dude, Yao Ming!
Third and finally, you will not encounter a finer gentlemen then our drummer Mr. Brad Kimber… that is right up until his third snifter of rum, at which point he becomes a fucking rude asshole!
Thanks to Lomera for taking the time to answer our questions. For more information about the band, including tour dates and their self-titled EP – check out their Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LomeraBand
Photo credit: Rod Hunt – 2012