Working at Stingray Music, we inevitably discover new music on the daily. Fortunately, we are always surrounded by great songs and interesting artists. Beyond the usual stream of major label artists, sometimes our colleagues surprise us with their musical projects. One such Stingray colleague is my friend of many years, Sasha Omer, now composing under the alias Moodboards.
We took some time to chat about his inaugural EP.
[Zac]: When was the first time that you remember taking music past the art of listening, and exploring the idea of actually creating it yourself?
[Moodboards]: It’s one of those things that I can’t even remember. I was always into it. I never ever questioned myself about life. I was always going to be a musician, I suppose. I was seven when I was taking piano lessons and 13 when I got my drum kit. How my father let me play drums in the house, I’ll never know, but I’m happy he did!
[Z]: Between those early moments and now, what has been the biggest musical leap for you?
[M]: Accepting my shortcomings and focusing on what I was good at. Pushing through doubtful moments; that was my biggest challenge. Prior to this release, I had only recorded myself playing drums, so jumping on a whole group of new instruments was a bit scary.
[Z]: Anger is a Gift, is your first official EP as Moodboards. Explain the title for me and how it references the project as a whole.
[S]: Just before I started to make this record, I went through a bout of resentment, denial, and ultimately anger at my musical situation. I was trying to play music with other people, exploring a few bands, and trying to find my place, with no profound success. In the end, my frustration is what pushed me to really create, and ultimately, what drove my lyrics. My anger was truly the gift that gave this project life.
[Z]: The first single is Hell is Other People, following your dark, brooding atmosphere. Talk to me about how you started this song. Was it chord driven, lyrics-driven, or vibe-driven?
[S]: When I started this EP, I decided to try my hand at every aspect of the creation, quite naively I’d like to add. One day I asked my friends if they had a beat-up old guitar laying around and my girl Clarence came through with what I can only describe as the best most beat up guitar I’ve ever seen. I wrote Hell is Other People the day I got that guitar. So definitely vibe-driven. This guitar pulled the song out of me, not the other way around. I guess alongside anger, guitars are also a good gift!
[Z]: Is there a favourite lyrics from this song?
[S]: Well, my favorite quote from the song is actually not mine, and I’m more than happy to acknowledge it publicly. I wrote, “What can I say? Knives don’t have your back,” the album title from Emily Haines first solo record. She’s one of my biggest inspirations.
[Z]: A mood board is a collage of dreams, goals, and aspirations. If you were the living iteration of your artist name, Moodboards, what dreams and imagery would we see glued and taped to you?
[S]: COLORS! Every color in the deepest tone possible! I see my music just like I see colors. I think I would be a cloud of color drifting in the wind.
[Z]: What makes you a unique artist? Why should someone listen to you rather than someone else?
[S]: I can’t tell someone to listen to me. But I can say that the music I make is eclectic and profound. Nothing about what I do, or the music I make, is fake, or an act. It's 100% me, and that’s always what you’ll get from a Moodboards record.
[Z]: If you had to live the rest of your life in a music video, which one would you pick and why?
[S]: Easy answer. I would be the fourth Beastie Boy in every single one of their videos, period.
Whether in the studio, on stage, or lost for life in the off-colour world of So What Cha Want, make sure to find Moodboards music and take a listen. If you like Interpol, Radiohead, or the National, this guy is for you.