Salt Lake City's nickname is "Crossroads of the West," and quickly emerging rock band Dream Collage
hope the heritage sticks with their own aspirations. Bringing high-energy rock to Christian music from their Utah home, the band--Isaac David, Daniel Magana, Matthew Keller and Andrew Porter--is looking to surprise the industry by bringing unexpected sounds out of an unexpected place.
On the verge of releasing their debut project, Ripple Effect
, frontman Isaac David answered 10 of my questions so we can know just who these rockers are, and learn more about their laser focus on spreading the gospel of Jesus.
1. OK, so what's your origin story? How did Dream Collage come to be?
Dream Collage officially started in April 2015 as a trio. However, the band has undergone several member changes since then. It took us a little while for the right people to fall into place at the right time before arriving at our current line up as a four piece. People will always come and go in any type of group, organization, or ministry for various reasons and it is so important to keep a healthy perspective during those changes. It's also equally important to maintain an attitude of gratitude for the season that past members contributed towards moving the band forward. Everything with this band has been about timing.
2. How did you arrive at the name Dream Collage? What's its significance?
The name Dream Collage was birthed out the heart and mission of the band. When the band was being formed, I wanted there to be purpose and meaning behind what we were doing. Just writing songs and playing shows to fulfill our personal desires is too small of a thing to live for. We needed to have a bigger "why", for what we were doing. Otherwise, the band would burn out when things got hard.
These three verses sum up why the name Dream Collage was decided on:
- Proverbs 29:18 (AMP): "Where there is no vision [no revelation of God and His word], the people are unrestrained; But happy and blessed is he who keeps the law [of God]."
- Acts 2:17 (NIV): ""In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams."
- Matthew 25:14-30 (The Parable of the Talents)
I wanted to create a band and brand of music that would encourage, motivate, and help others to dream, believe, and act. I wasn't about to let the fear of failure deter me from doing so either. I realized early on that if Dream Collage was going to be successful, then we needed to make it about other people.
Our mission statement became: "To create, inspire and active a culture of like-minded individuals who aren't afraid to act upon the visions and dreams that have been placed inside of them."
3. You're readying your first big debut, Ripple Effect, which is due out in mere weeks! It's been a long time coming for you guys; talk about the things God has taken you through as a band to get here.
This album cycle turned out to be an incredibly long process. Recording Ripple Effect was just as much of an in studio writing process as it was a recording process. The band was also going through member changes, which left me having to record most of the record on my own. By the time Dann came on board as our lead guitarist, and Matthew joined as our bassist, all the parts for the songs had already been written and tracked. However, this really presented an opportunity to discover the musical voice of Dream Collage.
Other than myself, Andrew has been the longest standing member of Dream Collage. Andrew performed all the drum tracks and did a killer job in the studio! When he tracked the drum parts, not all of the material for the songs had been completed yet. The songs we skeletons with mostly just the framework and a few of the tracks didn't even have lyrics or vocal melodies. After tracking all the drums for the album, it took every bit of another year before the rest of the album was finalized. Andrew has been incredibly patient and supportive through the entire process!
Ripple Effect is edgy, rough, and raw. Yeah, certain parts could be better and it's not perfect by any means, but every part of who we are is in there--the good, bad, and ugly. I can certainly look back on this album and know that best effort was given at every moment of the recording, production, and engineering process! That's all anyone could expect, honestly.
Despite the several member changes, I learned the value of continuing to move forward with vision and purpose. When Holy Spirit deposits something into your heart, run with it, and then look to see who's running next to you. When God speaks something directly to your heart and you know that it was from Him, that's all the reassurance you truly need. Man's approval or affirmation doesn't really matter at that point.
4. You're from Salt Lake City. What's the Christian music scene like there? Are there venues? What are the benefits and drawbacks of doing what you do in that city?
The Christian music scene in Utah is non-existent. There are plenty of venues in the general market, but no one seems to bringing the Christian music scene to this state. I've helped bring a few Christian artists to Utah but had very little response.
The benefit is no other band really does what we are doing. We are kind of on our own out here, though. However, our end goal for every show is to love people, to build relationships, and to leave a positive impression on our audience, and this is a great place to do just that!
One of the drawbacks is we don't get to hide out in the shelter of the Christian market. We've had to prove ourselves as a band, earn our keep and build our local reputation from the ground up! We don't have a lot of exposure to Christian events and opportunities, which from our perspective can be looked at as a benefit!
5. Describe your sound and your live show experience for someone who's never had the privilege.
Loud and passionately interactive aggressive rock that is energetic and emotive! The most common remarks and phrases we hear from people after they've seen us live is "high energy" and "love the energy." We don't like to just "play a show." We are entertainers and performers. Dream Collage will give our absolute best at every show regardless if there are five people in the room or 500 people in the room. The people who come to watch us live deserve our very best every single time no matter what the circumstances are.
Also, we don't like to waste time on stage. We work hard planning our sets to minimize downtime on stage and we are very intentional with our performances.
6. What's been the best moment you all have had as a band so far?
Our spring tour this past April was our first official tour with the current lineup. One of the best things about it was watching every member come together as a single unit. By the end, we had become a smooth running machine! There's not much else that beats being on tour and playing shows back to back with your band mates!
7. If you had to make a collage of anything right now, what would it be and why?
Live performance footage. Why? Because we want to use it for a music video!
8. What's next for you guys? Touring? What are the dreams you guys have for this band moving forward?
More shows, more touring, music videos, and starting the next album cycle with the altered lineup!
9. Do you all have secret identities (day jobs)? What are they?
10. How can people be praying for you?
- Isaac - Recording Engineer/Producer
- Daniel - Mechanic
- Matthew - Teacher
- Andrew - Chef
We need the backing and support of the church. About 90 percent of the gigs we play are in the general market. We need to know that the church has our back and is cheering us on in any and every situation that we may find our band in.
Pray for provision and opportunities. We are currently independent and DIY to the max; not by choice, but out of necessity.
We need wisdom and words to speak to people who at our shows. Every show is different and unique. Even if we aren't giving a salvation message at every show, we still want people to recognize that there is something different about us. If the only way that people know and recognize that I, personally, am a Christian, is because of a "label" that I wear, then that's a really big problem. Jesus said that they will know you are my disciples by your love for each other. Pray that we can have opportunities to display that love through our music and performances. Our band is about action and not just profession.