3/25/10

FEATURED INTERVIEW: SEJA



if you have never heard of seja, now's the time. hailing from brisbane australia, seja vogal has been a part of some of the countries best bands in the last decade (she played syths and sang back-up and occasionally lead vocals for sekiden and regurgitator). "didn’t pick up a guitar or synth until I was about 16 or 17 when I started playing in an early incarnation of sekiden," she says. "even though the synth i used in the beginning (a korg delta) was a bit limiting, i thought it was the coolest thing I'd ever heard." but this sunday march 27th she's releasing her debut solo album perfectly titled we have secrets but nobody cares. having been a huge fan of her band sekiden for years ever since seeing her play at the streetsville ontario masonic lodge at age 16, i was super excited to hear what seja's solo work would sound like. it surpassed any of my expectations and frankly, i can't stop playing it. coming from a background of playing in power-pop and rock & roll bands with an electronic flare, i wanted to see which route she would take while writing and recording her new album. "i guess i have always been inspired by the simple pop song; sweet melodies and harmonies and something that sounds interesting to my ears. i am definitely drawn to interesting keyboard sounds like those of devo, stereolab, broadcast but i think i was listening to a lot of hip hop while i was making this album." in shirk's opinion, we have secrets but nobody cares takes us to a place of euphoria, floating and living in slow motion; it's reminiscent of hot chip colliding with boat house. soft and delicate vocals layered and harmonizing combined with an assortment of hard, punchy and at times ghostly synthesizers and drum machines; a perfect combination. 


having been in a few successful bands most of her musical career, the transition from being in a constant boys club to breaking out on your own must have it's own scariness to it. but there's no doubt that her past experiences haven't shaped her and shown her who she is and what she wants. "because i was in sekiden from such an early age, we grew up as a band; it really gave me the confidence to be a better songwriter and performer," seja tells me, "in regurgitator I learnt a lot about getting up in front of big groups of people and realising that its not the scariest thing in the world to perform to massive crowds. but i learnt that i am capable of making something good on my own. before i made this album i always needed affirmation and approval from others and i wasn’t particularly confident that i could ever produce something without other people. it was nice to think about all the sounds and harmonies on my own to begin with and realise exactly what i wanted before i got mirko to help me achieve some of my goals." and mirko not only happens to be seja's brother but also a sekiden member and main collaborator with her while making we have secrets but nobody cares. he jumped on board just after the main tracking began and mixed and mastered the album; after working together for over 10 years it seems that they not only make a great team but that mirko understood what seja was looking to do with this album. "his knowledge of sound is much greater than mine so when i say 'i need it more zzzzrrrrr', he would know what i mean and do it."


and not only does seja have a debut record to be excited about, but she recently joined forces with australian record label rice is nice and well, they do seem pretty nice. "when i first thought about releasing my album the only prerequisite i had was that the label who put it out had to love and care about it as much as i did, "she explains, "julia and ben (who run rice is nice) are both super dedicated awesome people and when they said they'd like to put it out i just had a good feeling about it." and i myself have talked briefly with julia, and she was super nice! rice is nice is not only a catchy name, but they're all super sweet; who would've thought. but the time's boiling down to the anticipated revealing of seja's debut record and i must say that i haven't been this excited for an album release in a long time. i ask seja if she plans on taking the new tunes on the road, "i would love to! i'm just about to play my first proper australian tour in april. hopefully i'll get to come and play in some other countries one day too!" well i would like to think so; it's not often that a indie rock band from brisbane plays small masonic lodges in small towns but thankfully years ago they did and i was there. seja tells me she's pretty excited about the big day, so i then end the interview off with my favorite question; i asked her to give me three words that best describe we have secrets but nobody cares. "synthie, ohh and ahh", she replies, "wait, do they have to be real words?"


NICKNAME Slayer or Sega
BIRTHDAY 21st of May
BIRTH PLACE Germany
OCCUPATION Musician?
TURN ONS Zippy tones
TURN OFFS None
FAVORITE MUSICAL ARTIST Devo
FAVORITE MOVIE Edward Scissorhands
FAVORITE TV SHOW Freaks and Geeks
FAVORITE BOOK The Little Prince
FAVORITE COCKTAIL Tequila sunrise
FAVORITE FOOD Avocado sushi
LEAST FAVORITE FOOD Meat
FAVORITE CLOTHING DESIGNER/STYLE Review
FAVORITE OUTDOOR ACTIVITY Running
FAVORITE INDOOR ACTIVITY Sewing
FAVORITE PLACE TO GO OUT Friends houses
FAVORITE CONCERT Summersault festival 1996 (Pavement, Sonic Youth, Beck, Beastie Boys, Bikini Kill)
FAVORITE SHOW YOU EVER PLAYED In Laos Regurgitator played an old Russian style circus building to a couple of thousand people. We had fireworks on stage (scary!), the power went out in the first song, and we had to wait to go back on stage for 20 minutes.
WORST SHOW YOU EVER PLAYED One Sekiden show a kid in the audience put a fire hose on me because he thought I looked hot. Which is ok, but I was worried for my synthesizers.
ASPIRATIONS To make some more albums and play some more shows
ANY LAST WORDS? Thank you :)





not only does seja have some killer talent, but she's got a wicked sense of humor. here's a video that seja with the help of a few of her friends made as a teaser for the new album that she posted onto myspace. it's truly work of mind-numbingly colourful art. and check out her myspace (link below); our favorite song is i'll get to you. once again! we have secrets but nobody cares debuts this sunday march 27th on rice is nice records! thanks seja!












http://www.myspace.com/sejamusic
http://www.riceisnice.net/artists/seja
http://www.sekiden.com/

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