Glorybots are making interesting and unique music that is not only intriguing, but incredibly appealing. They leave some to the imagination, calling their music “dark alien pop” in which mastermind and musical force behind Glorybots, Jalal Andre elaborates on more in our interview.
Glorybot’s latest singles “Dream About Nothing” and “Afterlife” are their catch, and are simply catchy, with folks listening bopping their head along as they listen, or getting into the groove with a little dance possibly. Glorybots success and talent derives from drummer, Ben Hilzinger, co-producer, Don Farwell, and the main man himself, Jalal Andre. Andrew used to be the frontman of the rock group, Echo Texture, based in the Pacific Northwest.
Read our interview with The Cure loving, experimental brain behind the musical connisseur, Glorybots.
Firstly, why do you guys call your sound “dark alien pop,” and who came up with it first?
Glorybots: For years, my go-to instrument was the guitar… but, for this project, I wanted to incorporate more digital/synthesizer elements from the onset. So, I began writing pieces for the album by playing around with keyboard sounds and riffs. There was a lot of trial and error, both in the song writing process and in developing overall themes and arrangements, but as the songs evolved, I consistently chose similar sonic signatures that were a bit dark and alien-sounding (to my ear anyway). At the same time, many of the songs retained more of a traditional rock/pop structure in the verse/chorus arrangements, and when I realized that the evolving soundscape reminded me of an alien sci-fi movie soundtrack, “Dark Alien Pop” seemed like the perfect description for what was being created. Admittedly, I had to go back and nudge a few songs in that overall direction, and the blend of alien soundscapes is variable in each song throughout the album.
Where does the name Glorybots derive from?
Glorybots: The name, Jalal, means “glory” and I liked the idea of the band being a bunch of nameless bots (sarcastically) in search of fame and fortune.
Jalal, you’re the main-man behind Glorybots; how do you get other folks involved in your projects, and how do you go about choosing the ones you want to involve?
Glorybots: I have always loved working and interacting with people, and I think there’s a synergy and beauty that’s created when you can incorporate other people’s perspectives and ideas into those of your own. When it came to this project, I wanted to push my own limits, and surround myself with others who would understand that, and were easy to get along with. I put out a few feelers and basically assembled the group of musicians through my own instincts and/or the suggestion of good friends. I was also lucky that no one said “no” to my initial requests! But each person brought a lot to the project in their own, unique way, and I am eternally grateful for that.
Were the concepts for each video, “Dream About Nothing,” and “Afterlife,” already fleshed out, or did they evolve during the making of the videos?
Glorybots: Each video was modified a fair amount during its’ respective making. For “Afterlife,” I worked with local Seattle director Carlos Cruz to develop the ideas, and we met on several occasions to brainstorm and develop the idea of an alien being abducted by humans and then transformed into a Glorybot. When Hobby Creative Studio actualized the video, they really brought those ideas to fruition, but they also developed entire alien landscapes, an operating room, they hung signs portraying human abductors, and they developed the doctor and alien action figures; many of these elements went way beyond what I had envisioned. They even 3D-printed many of the props in the video, which was like icing on the cake for me.
For “Dream About Nothing,” I wanted the video to provide a few shots of the band and highlight Glorybots’ live performance (featuring Ben Hilzinger on drums and Ian Sides on bass). I worked with directors Carlos Cruz and Thai M. Tran, who developed much of the content within the interleaved vignettes, which we all felt was critical to differentiate the video from a “traditional” band performance video. On the day of the shoot, though, there were some small snafus (we couldn’t use the colored smoke we wanted to use, for example) and a few of the scenes didn’t capture as expected on video. To our pleasant surprise, other scenes, including some of the band’s performance and several vignettes, were more dynamic and captivating than we had initially anticipated, and those were further modified under the guidance of Ronnie Dennis, Director of Photography.
How do you feel music videos give you another outlet of creativity for your music?
Glorybots: I think videos offer a limitless potential to share a song’s story by offering a visual accompaniment that becomes an active, incorporated part of the music. To me, music videos are an extension of the song, in both the visual story that’s conveyed, but also in the dynamics that are created by framing the video component within the musical piece. Nowhere else is that done. In any other format (movies, TV, etc.) the music is set to the film/scene, but in music videos, the video is set to the song… and that dynamic is both unique and powerful. It adds another dimension to the song, and if done correctly, can really drive the song in an unpredictable direction.
Who was your first concert, and who is your overall favorite, thus far?
Glorybots: My first concert was Depeche Mode, and they were great, but my favorite live performance was The Cure, followed closely by Sigur Rós.
What was your first album on cassette, CD and/or vinyl?
Glorybots: I honestly don’t remember my “first” album, but my favorite early album was Japanese Whispers by the Cure.
Which five artists and/or albums would you not want to live without?
Glorybots: The Cure (especially the Japanese Whispers album), Radiohead (especially The Bends and In Rainbows albums), Pretty Hate Machine by Nine Inch Nails, (Untitled) by Sigur Rós, and Dummy by Portishead.
Do you have a guilty music or entertainment pleasure?
Glorybots: I “occasionally” hum a Journey song every once in a while!