The intention of this site is to preserve a length of time that has profound importance in my life regarding independent music that has helped to define who I am presently. My hope is to share this with all of you.
This site will evolve, much like time.
I find it fitting to feature a band that is not only one of my all time favorites, but one who recently ended Indefinite Hiatus status a couple years ago with a teaser to fans that their album, Horses Galloping on Sailboats, would be completed. Thus, Kaddisfly concludes their trilogy of albums that began in 2005 with Buy Our Intention; We'll Buy You A Unicorn, followed up by Set Sail The Prarie in 2007.
It is now 2015 and with the start of the summer solstice a few days ago, we were privileged to have this monumental musical acheievement available to us. It was created by five humans, full of love, passion, honesty, hope and wisdom for all of us who choose to open our ears and listen.
Prior to the release, I reached out via Facebook with a list of questions that reflect the past, present and future:
"As every member of the band would have meaningful answers to these questions, this interview specifically is answered by Christopher."
Now that Horses Galloping on Sailboats is finished and the trilogy complete, will this be Kaddisfly's "swan song" or a new beginning for the band?
I would say neither… Horses Galloping on Sailboats marks a time in place and honestly a very special place. This is the first record we’ve recorded without pressure, without outside influence, without “trying” to appease any one or anything (although I venture to say we’ve really never caved that much). More than anything this record was envisioned, conceptualized, executed and put forth with pure passion and total disregard for anything but our hearts and friendship. It’s something that really can’t occur in the modern musical era without humility and not giving a shit if anyone likes it. It’s like a snapshot of the emotional connection between brothers, which, though anything but perfect, begets perfection in its own right. As for future releases… excited to see what the future holds. A lot like this interview, everything is a snapshot, a mental picture, a verbal recollection - everything evolves and changes in time.
Was a trilogy always envisioned?
Probably halfway through the recording of Buy Our Intention, We’ll Buy You a Unicorn. I remember wanting to make that specific album a synopsis of a life through death originally, but we realized it would be much better accomplished through the depth that times provides - that depth being our growth, craft, and overall friendship - both musically and emotionally. As everything evolved everything made sense, almost like our foresight coincided with hindsight, creating a pure, honest vision.
Does Horses Galloping on Sailboats reference Set Sail The Prairie?
Absolutely - but that’s for the listener to discover.
The lyrics [on all the albums] span an immense range of emotions, but maintain a general point of view, rather a specific singular perspective. But that's the point, isn't it?...to look beyond ourselves and realize our impact on others and the world around us. I feel that humanity needs Kaddisfly's music right now.
It’s funny I remember saying to a fan (now friend) at one point - the lyrical content is my best attempt at describing the same thing over and over again. I suppose much like life, it’s hard to quantify, judge, or describe because time itself plays such an important role. Maybe time itself is the beginning and end. Maybe it’s the origin of humanity and the constant search for betterment and purpose. Maybe it’s the epitome of love. Maybe it doesn’t matter. Maybe it does. Call Me Maybe… thats a hit song, right?
I've always been curious: why was "Tribal" re-recorded for Did You Know People Can Fly?
I think we’d had a couple beers when we did that… or maybe we didn’t, I don’t really remember [smile emoticon]
Any significant thematic reasons for a female vocalist on "Unto Dark Hours..." & "Birds" or did they just fit stylistically?
We just always like the idea of different dynamics and textures. In the perfect live setting, we envision ourselves with an army up there, and although it’s yet to materialize on stage, when recording we grasp at every resource we can. I also love taking something and using it in a different way - using a male vocal and re-using it with a female voice for instance. There is another level of thought added to the music/lyrics/album as a whole. Much like repurposing a trash can to make a flower pot… although I guess I’ve never done that, but I think I’d like to - we did that with a theremin - but not with a trash can - I guess that’s the thing with time.
Is there any theremin use on Horses Galloping on Sailboats? If you go out touring, should we expect some new, funky item turned into one? I've seen you twice in Philly, once on the Take Action Tour at the Electric Factory and then at the First Unitarian Church in the basement. I believe you were using a snow globe…?
Theremin = Awesome! Actually what we used was an optical theremin which reacts to light, something we all react to. It’s probably one of the most human instruments out there in a lot of ways - sound torn down to it’s basics, raw pulse and emotion. Aside from the live aspect on several songs, we’ve only used it in the studio once - on Snowflakes. It will appear again I’m sure, maybe a human theremin? We’re probably almost there - Jonathan Ive? Elon Musk? Seriously
There is no credit given in the liner notes of Set Sail The Prairie for trombone on "Clouds." Who provided that? I always enjoyed that little touch. *[This question was edited because I don't know my instruments. I thought it was a trumpet.]*
That was Kelsey, and it was actually a Trombone; He’s a pro [smile emoticon]. Lord knows where we picked that little gem up.
Are there any acoustic recordings of songs (familiar or unfamiliar) floating around your catalog? I'd love to hear some stripped down versions, especially if you utilize some percussive instruments rather than the typical drum set.
No. There will be though, that’s actually next on the list of things to do - although the list is a constant circle so you can probably see the trouble in nailing down a timeframe, that whole beginning and end conundrum.
I’m probably way off, but since I'm in the midst of watching "Twin Peaks," was there any inspiration for the owls mentioned in songs and used in drawings? "The owls are not what they seem.”
Never watched it but I’m told I should. Actually a lot of folks have drawn references from my lyrics, none of which I’m intimately familiar with - but that’s ok by me. I think there are many inherent constants in our reality, that if explored, lead to similar results. Again, finding a way to describe the same things in different ways. There are limitations to humanity - you can only go so high, only go so low, but that’s the point. It’s like a carnival ride - board game - movie -book - as humans we are only capable of creating something as outlandish as our creation itself, which has a beginning and an end. Reality itself has no such constraints, and that’s the fun, “spiritual” part of the ride. At the end of the day it’s all love, and owls are tight. Why Sold Owl? - RC
The album is available exclusively for download at intheclouds and will be on standard and limited edition vinyl in the fall.