Everything In Slow Motion is a hard rock band led by Shane Ochsner. Most fans know of Shane's musical talent through his former band Hands or his current band Everything In Slow Motion. The Facedown Records label was supportive of Shane's ambitious, dynamic rock band Hands from the label's debut in 2009. In 2012, after Hands finished making music, Everything In Slow Motion was started by Shane.
Everything In Slow Motion is truly a passion project for Shane and it shows in every aspect. 2012's two-song EP Red, was lovingly received by fans, and the full-length album Phoenix, in 2013, only solidified the fanbase. Lastly, the second EP, Laid Low, in 2016, showed some progression, yet remained undoubtedly recognizable and welcomed.
The band's newest album, Influence, is releasing October 16, 2020. This album is arguably one of the most highly-anticipated albums that Facedown Records, and the band itself, has ever released. With a very passionate fanbase behind them, the labels' full support, and two years of writing, Influence will most likely be a contender for rock album of the year. I had the pleasure of talking with Shane about the new album. It definitely excites me for the new album even more, and hopefully you will join in on the anticipation.
Do you want to go ahead and start by just introducing yourself?
My name is Shane and Everything In Slow Motion has been around since 2012. It became a music project right after the Give Me Rest album by my former band Hands. I was always the primary writer in Hands. It's weird to even say that because you have other band members contributing. But it seemed that the direction that Hands was going was being led by me. Give Me Rest album was under unique circumstances because we were actually done being a band beforehand. Facedown Records offered to help make another album. I just remember thinking that was odd since we were basically done as a band. But they were into it, and so we decided to write another record. And in that process, there was a lot that fell on my shoulders to make that album happen.
So, I found out a lot about myself in that process. I discovered I enjoyed writing and taking more control myself. But, it wasn't because I don't like the collaboration with other people. When you have the creative freedom to do whatever you want, it's just a different experience. So, when we got done with that record, I realized that I definitely want to keep writing music. That's kind of where Everything In Slow Motion was born. Facedown Records was supportive and I wanted to take the opportunity to keep making music.
What are the main differences between your former band Hands and Everything In Slow Motion?
Hands was an established band and Everything In Slow Motion was this new solo project. It's even weird calling it a solo project because clearly when you listen to it, it sounds like a full band. But like I mentioned, the main difference is with Everything In Slow Motion, I have primary control over the music, rather than more overall collaboration.
You have a new album coming out titled Influence. What have been some of the highlights of writing this new album?
It's everything we hoped it would be, which is a satisfying feeling. I guess this ties back to the Give Me Rest album. What I loved about that record and why it became so personal, is that there was a lot of circumstances around it that just made it so tough to write, record, and produce it. All the grind and all the heartache over this thing turned out great though. It's honest and it's a really great reflection of where we were all at that time. This album is giving me all those same vibes. This record has taken over two years to finish. There were many times I thought about quitting, giving up. It was hard to see the positives through most of it. For example, one time I didn't like the sound of my vocals with what I was trying to do. So, I took the rest of the year and just worked on vocals.
Aaron Crawford is my friend that plays drums in the band. He joined the band in 2015. We're both perfectionists, often to a fault, which didn't necessarily help sometimes. And it's musically, the best project I've ever been a part of, for sure. It is myself, Aaron, and then Nate Washburn as the producer. He plays guitar in the rock band My Epic and he works down in Atlanta at Glow in the Dark Studios. And this is the first time I've ever worked with him on a project. We had a ton of fun, yet it was an unbelievably ambitious record. Everyone played to their strengths, and it was great. We are all incredibly stoked on how it came out and every song to us is a winner, no filler. It's even one that we want to listen to personally.
Do you want to explain the unique artwork?
We started recording this album at a special place called the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa. I would highly recommend that people check it out. It's basically a music venue but also partially a music Museum that's been preserved since the 1940s. It's most famously known for being the last venue in 1959, that Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper artists played their last show and then got on a plane and tragically died. But when you walk in the venue, it is just a time capsule. I've just always been attracted to the museum part of the place. I remember walking in and having this feeling right away of feeling like somehow, someway we have to work in here. This needs to be a part of whatever it is that we're doing someday
We set up camp there for a few days and began tracking the record and they hosted us, which was awesome. We were trying to think of other ways that the Surf Ballroom could be a part of our record. So, there is a women's powder room that has this four-way mirror, and that's the cover of the record. No one designed any of that in Photoshop. That's our friend Lucas Carpenter, who is in charge of doing all the photography for a lot of this record. He was able to get in there and get the right camera angle and the right lighting and captured this really interesting shot of this four-way mirror. We're not going to ruin it with text or anything else, it's just this really cool photo. From a design standpoint, it's photography. And it's the things that we love about the Surf Ballroom. So that's how we ended up with that.
What's the story behind each guest vocalist on Influence?
Aaron Stone was a no brainer. I had done a song with My Epic a few years ago called "Ghost Story." We love each other so much, and so it was just a matter of time before we did something together. I told him after I did that song with them, "Well you're next, man. Whatever I do next, your voice is gonna be on it." And unfortunately, my project would take a few years to come out. That song for the album is the song "Influence." I really wanted to hear Aaron in that environment. There are so many other places in the record that would have been so easy to put him in. So, I wanted to throw Aaron into the deep end with this, essentially, rock and roll song. And he was uncomfortable, the song was uncomfortable for me too. I was experimenting with something new. It was in the end, a lot of fun.
There's a song called "Something I Can Feel" that has a friend of mine on it. Her name is Crystal Rose, and she lives here in Kansas City. I've known her for a few years and she's just unbelievably talented. I love her voice and what she does and I've been waiting for the right opportunity to somehow get her tied into whatever we're doing. And that song really presented the opportunity.
The last track is called "End Of My Rope." So, one of my best friends is Ric Todd. And he's an artist, possibly the best musician I know. I've known him for a long time and he's a brilliant songwriter. Musically, we are very different. He's more of a Blues and R&B style artist. And then obviously I come from this kind of heavy rock background. He put out an EP five years ago, and one of the songs is "End Of My Rope." And I worked with him with recording that song back then and I just remember I loved it. I would think an Everything In Slow Motion version of this would just be sick. Like gigantic guitars, the drums beating it up. With his blessing, he allowed us to record that song for our record. And he actually plays guitar on our version, he shreds this gnarly bluesy, Prince-sounding solo in the middle of it. That's just like my favorite part of the entire album. They're all super awesome and have their own story of why they're working with us.
What can fans be expecting, musically, and lyrically from Influence?
With every record from Everything In Slow Motion, there's some sort of progression but there are some new things introduced too. The records have never sounded just the same. It started as a much heavier project, coming off of the last band. 10 years later, a lot has progressed and changed and the records reflect that pretty honestly. And it is an awesome rock record that's very dense. It is very melodic and dynamic too. I think without a shadow of a doubt, it's our best record
And lyrically, I think people have come to expect this kind of wearing your heart on your sleeve idea and just being honest. And that's what this is. It's just coming from a different place. I think, rather than being tied up in just a big spiritual battle, which was more Hands stuff, this is way more focused on self-analysis and not even specific to me entirely. It's just looking at things through a different lens. I'd say it's dark but very relatable. As I was reading the lyrics through, with no music for the first time, by the time I got to the end of it I was a bit surprised by how dark some themes are. I didn't really have the full picture until it was all truly finished. It's the songs that carry a little more weight, a little more heartache that I gravitate towards. And I think as an artist that's, that's how I tend to write the lyrics.
Anything else you want to share?
I'm just super grateful for the people that are listening. Sometimes you just feel like another post on the internet. And it's always cool to have any sort of interaction with people through this music. Especially, the people that have been around with me for a long time. It is super cool and I'm super grateful for them.
How can we be praying for you?
Health, I suppose. We're pretty fortunate right now. There's a lot of other stuff going on out there that needs people's attention.
Ryan Adams grew up in Boise, Idaho and fell in love with rock and metal through his high school best friend. While he searches for long-term guidance. This is his 2nd year with NRT.
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