What is your name and role within Dream Cities?
Mike Solo – Drums.
What have you been working on recently?
We just put out the new video for ‘Angel’s Call’ but over the past 12 months we’ve been busy writing our second album and filming live videos for all the tracks from ‘Everybody’s Nobody’. There’s loads of stuff to be released in the near future, which is exciting for us.
You’re new single ‘Angels Call’ is out now, what influenced the sound and songwriting for this track?
Alex (bass, electronics) and Andrej (guitar) came up with the main atmospheric introduction and the arpeggiated guitar riff a few years ago when we were still an instrumental band. It quickly became a favourite of ours to jam on, so when Ello joined the band as MC, we were really interested to hear his take on the vocals and lyrics. I think the music suits the theme of darkness and redemption in the vocals, with an air of hopefulness around it. Musically, there’s a lot of world music influence in the samples we’ve used across many songs, but the rhythm and chords and chorus are probably everything from Phil Collins ‘In The Air Tonight’ to P.O.D.’s ‘Alive.’ That wasn’t intentional, it just came out that way!
Your new album is out now where and when did you record?
We recorded ‘Everybody’s Nobody’ at Megaphon Studios in Sydney, with Alex Wilson (sleepmakeswaves) engineering and mixing for us. We did a few guitar and bass overdubs at home or at his studio, whilst Ello did almost all his vocals himself at his place. It was cool going into a big studio to track and we had fun, but it took a long time for us to get all the details right due to the number of layers we kept adding to the songs. We might try to simplify next time haha.
Who did you work with during the recording and production process?
We self produced demos of everything ourselves initially, then asked Alex Wilson to help us record and mix the album. He had just enough time in between massive touring stints with sleepmakeswaves to fit in a couple days of recording, which was great.
What programs/instruments did you use?
Pretty standard instrumentation for the band – vocals, guitar, bass, drums, keyboard – but mainly Ableton for the electronics and Reaper for the mixing process.
How did you go about writing the music?
Eventually when Ello joined as MC, we re-arranged most tracks to make space for him. But in some cases, he freestyled directly on top of what we already had and it actually worked out great – so we kept the best of both worlds!
What did you find most challenging and rewarding during the recording/production process?
The most rewarding thing was having it all done. None of us had ever finished an album before so it felt good to complete it and share it with people.
Where can we buy/download the album?
Feel free to stream or watch on Spotify/YouTube or you can support us directly at dreamcities.bandcamp.com.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Otherwise I’ve actually been listening to a lot of sports podcasts – The Lowe Post & JJ Reddick podcast (basketball), The Tennis podcast.
What do you like to do away from music?
Otherwise I enjoy exercising and playing tennis or table tennis (when there’s time and someone to play with!).
What’s planned for the remainder of 2019 going into2020?
There’ll be releases for the live videos we recorded pretty soon and then hopefully we can bunker down to finish writing the next album and have it out sometime in 2020 with more shows.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
Hanging out at home!