It's mid-summer and things are super chill. It feels like it could be (or should be) this way forever... We chatted to VACATION about their new EP, UNCERTAINTIES, playing for our London launch and their mellow music style, perfect for this time of year.
So, what was the writing process for the EP like?
Lyrically, everything came together really quickly once I established the message I wanted to convey. ‘Echo Chamber’ And ‘Deeper Understanding’ were each written in one go whereas ‘Speculations’ and ‘Glass Half Full’ were older songs that I re-wrote in order for them to be more relevant to the theme of the EP. From the get go I was very fixated on the idea of uncertainty therefore writing the lyrics was pretty straight forward as I knew exactly which direction I wanted to go in. The instrumentation however, was a different story. The process took around 2 months mainly due to me (Frank) constantly changing the chord progressions and experimenting with different drum tracks. Eventually I found a sound I was happy with and got the EP mastered. All in all it was 3 months of mainly playing around with riffs and trying to recording the perfect take.
Who are your influences?
I think influences come and go. At the time of recording this EP I was listening to a lot of Lorde and I think her minimal production style definitely shaped the sound of this EP, especially in terms of the beats and percussion- from the pounding bass drums to the use of clicks instead of snares. ‘The xx’s’ new album ‘I see you’ had also come out around that time and I’ve always loved their sound so a lot of the guitar riff’s and the guitar sound is based on them.
The EP is really atmospheric - vocally and rhythmically, especially with all the guitars. How do you guys play with the two elements?
I’m really particular about keeping a theme and whilst recording ‘uncertainties’ I wanted to make sure the sound of the tracks reflected the mood of the lyrics and even just my own mood at the time of recording, this includes things like the choice of reverb on the guitar to the muted drums. Rhythmically the aim was to provide ambiguity in the tone of the tracks as to reflect the whole concept of ‘uncertainty’. I didn’t want to make either happy or sad songs, I wanted something in the middle which I think in the end contributed to the atmosphere of the EP.
Who would you really like to work with in the future?
I’d love to work with all sorts of people. I guess a big one would be Joe Mount of Metronomy, his sound and production has remained one of my favourites throughout the years. If I could end up in the studio with him one day and play around on some synths that would be a dream.
Here's a fun one: What's your favourite 90s jam?
Smells Like Teen Spirit haha
What's up next for you guys?
Hopefully a lot of gigs. There’s a lot of cool bands out there we’d love to support and play alongside. We keep meaning to put on some DIY shows of our own as well so thats a possibility.