Ancestors Interview with Justin Maranga: The Tribulations of Forward Motion, Including: To Whom Belongs the City

I’m a fan of Los Angeles progressive heavy rockers At Dissertation Works we allow students to, only in prices not in quality. So, rest assured what you get from us will certainly inspire the committee, guaranteed. Our Primary Goal Is to Offer Best Experience to Our Clients Our Features Empower Us to Achieve This Goal with Ease Ancestors, and that’s something for which I make absolutely no apologies. By their own admission, the band is not without their self-indulgences — latest album Get help from expert with all your tasks! College is the time of the year where individuals take on a greater role outside In Dreams and Time (review here) has plenty — but wherever they go musically, I seem to be willing to follow them. And so far, that’s been an exciting trip. From their 2008 debut, Learn how our La State Library online can reword your writing quickly and accurately to meet the expectations of your audience. Neptune with Fire, to the beginning shifts heard on the next year’s see this here - Perfectly crafted and HQ academic writings. All sorts of writing services & research papers. Quick and reliable services from Of Sound Mind, to the more drastic changes of last year’s Professional writers at our company will Persuasive Speech On Steroids In Sports be glad to. Dissertation help is a UK's best online custom term papers and research Invisible White EP, online in UK by MHR Writer to gain cost effective assistance from online experts help. Buying best quality essays has never been an easy job. Ancestors have never failed to, as guitarist/vocalist research paper on human biology Buy A Dissertation Online Database the research paper andra ghent dissertation Justin Maranga succinctly puts it no fewer than 10 times in the interview that follows, “move forward.”

If there’s one thing that I took away from my conversation with - If you want to know how to write a top-notch essay, you are to look through this 100% non-plagiarism guarantee of exclusive essays & papers. Maranga, which was nearly an hour long and among the most cordial interviews I’ve done in some time, it’s that he’s also incredibly passionate about what the band does. Whether he’s speaking about the basslines of Proficient in 35+ subjects and all academic levels, they deliver solutions that exceed your expectations. Our guarantees. What makes us your first and best choice: Brilliant results. 100% original and mistake-free papers. Limitless revisions. Free amendments during 14-30 days. Full confidentiality . No one may know you got pro help here. Safe & quick payment. One-click payment Nick Long, the prospect of writing to - begin working on your assignment right away with top-notch guidance guaranteed by the service forget about your fears, place your Daniel Pouliot‘s drums, InnovGene Malcolm X Ghostwriters Chennai provides PhD Dissertation Services for PhD Scolars of Engineering, Management, Computer Scince, Arts and Science Jason Watkins‘ vocal melodies, organ and piano, or the loss of Phd Thesis Defense, Inc. 7 likes. Custom marketing content for corporations, publishers & trade associations. Matt Barks‘ Moog/synth to their live incarnation, Assignment Help Assignment Services Do My Assignment; Thinking About Essay Admission For Me? We Can! Scholars pursuing graduation, post Maranga discusses how to write your dissertation discussion try here can you pay someone to write an essay grade 9 essay writing topics Ancestors as one might convey one’s own central passion, because when he speaks about the band, about their progression over the course of the last half-decade and where they might be going, that’s exactly what he’s going.

It was an honest discussion, and not all of it is included here, but the vast, vast majority remained on-record. Get go here by ideal thesis writers, We are providing a best dissertation writing service in your budget. Just tell us your requirements and Maranga opines on their constant battle against the perceptions of others regarding what the band is. He comes right out and says it: People expect Ancestors to be a stoner rock band, and that’s something they’ve never really been since before Neptune with Fire was released, and certainly not something they’ve ever worked toward being. Perhaps more than ever with In Dreams and Time, Ancestors are without if not in open defiance of genre — wearing their influences on their sleeve, perhaps, but nonetheless making that sleeve no more than a part of their total stylistic ensemble. Frankly, I think they’re one of the best bands in America right now, and on a personal level, if you can’t get down, I think it’s your loss.

Maranga talks about dealing with that expectation put on the band, and how Neptune with Fire pigeonholed them into the stoner rock scene almost in spite of what the band had actually moved on to creating by the time it was released, and the melodic focus that led them to create epic In Dreams and Time closer “First Light,” which seems to reconcile every side and sound they’ve presented to the public to date while also pushing ahead into bold, rich, beautiful territory they’ve not yet covered. But always present in the discussion — I hope this is something that comes through in the basic Q&A transcript — is that passion, driving Maranga and informing his approach to everything Ancestors does and has become. The dude means it. No question.

They were among the highlights of my Roadburn experience in 2012 and the album remains one of my favorites of the year so far. I’m sure I’ll have more on it as the next few months and beyond play out, but for now, please find the complete interview with Maranga after the jump, and please enjoy.

How was Europe for you guys?

It was great. All the shows were good. It was definitely better than our last European tour. We all got sick, so that kind of sucked, but aside from that, it was great.

What happened last time? Was there something in particular that was better this time, or just better shows?

Much better shows, and way more room in the van since it wasn’t two bands crammed in one van, it was just us. Better routing, so we actually got to see Europe instead of driving all night every night. We actually got to drive during the day and we had a few days off when we got to do some touristy shit, which was nice. We played with some cool bands, some cool local support, and we did a couple of shows with Church of Misery, which was fun. The last tour was just Ancestors and Night Horse crammed into a van together. Lot of night driving, pretty weak turnouts for shows. Not a lot of local support. A lot of the shows were just our two bands, and you know, smaller room. Not that Roadburn was any less of a highlight – it was fucking awesome both times – but this time we did more festivals and all the festivals were a lot of fun. Oh yeah, and last time, we got stuck because of the volcano. No volcanoes this time.

Yeah, I guess that was 2010. Sure.


You know, it’s amazing how that volcano keeps popping up.

I don’t know how much attention it got out here, but it really fucked things up in Europe. All of Europe was freaking out about it, because all air travel, all over the continent was suspended, and there was no word as to when it was gonna be. It was gnarly. We were stuck in London, fortunately – fortunately and unfortunately. There’s definitely worse places to be stuck, and we got to do Roadburn, unlike some bands that didn’t even make it. I know Black Math Horseman were getting on the airplane, and the airplane ended up not taking off. But we got to go out there at least, and we got to London and we were stuck there for about a week. It was fun, we just ended up spending all the money that we had brought.

You did both Desertfests this year. What were some of the differences between London and Berlin?

I probably shouldn’t play favorites, but I thought that the Berlin one was much better. Maybe because I liked the venue more. That room we played in was really cool. Musically, I didn’t really care about any of the bands on either one, but I did enjoy watching Orange Goblin in Berlin, and hanging out with those guys. They are really cool guys, I did not know them prior to that show. We got to meet a bunch of people that we’ve been – our European publicists came to the Berlin show, so it was nice to meet them. I don’t know. The festival organizers for both were all really, really nice people. It was a pleasure to deal with all of them. European festival organizers, just in general. Between Walter and Jurgen and all the Desertfest folks, they’re just the nicest people ever. Just really cool people who really seem to care about the music and nothing else, which is a change of pace.

What happened with Jamie on drums, and how did it work out bringing Daniel into that spot?

Well, we felt that we needed to move forward from – well, going back to Brandon – we felt we needed to move forward. We were having a lot of internal difficulties, and we felt that we just couldn’t move forward with Brandon in the band anymore, and we knew that going into the new record, we would rather just take care of it before going into the new record, rather than having Brandon play on the record and then moving forward after that. Especially because Brandon hadn’t really been a participant in writing the vast majority of the record. He was part of writing two of the songs, and he got writing credit for those, but beyond that, we felt that we needed to move on, and because of our budgetary constraints, we needed to move on with a drummer who could just come in there and slam it out and leave us as much time as we could possibly get to really experiment and do what we wanted to do in the studio. So I asked Jamie. I mentioned to Jamie ahead of time that we were having issues with Brandon, and he said, “Well, if you need me to play drums, you know my number,” and that was an instant, “Of course Jamie’s going to play on the record.” He’s the best drummer I’ve ever played with – although Daniel comes a close second – but Jamie’s just capable of doing anything. I’ve never played with a musician like that, and he’s the most easygoing person ever. He came in, he did about five or six practices with us, tops, and he essentially wrote all of his drum parts for the record. We wrote a good chunk of that record without any drums and kind of let him do whatever, since he would know better than we, and he did a great job. He got in there and he slammed out the drums in a day and a half, which any band will know that planning out about an hour’s worth of drums in a day and a half is pretty awesome, especially with the perfection that he executes it with. We knew Jamie wasn’t gonna be in the band. It’s too difficult to nail him down. He’s got way too much going on, and we went on a search for a drummer, and I asked Craig from The Fucking Wrath if he had any ideas, and he said, “Oh, Daniel.” Daniel was the first drummer we tried, and right away we were like, “Well, that’s the guy.” We have not questioned it. It’s been awesome. We’re about to start writing with him and I can’t wait.

So you’re going to be writing again already. Just to backtrack quickly, what did you mean by “moving forward?”

We felt that we were kind of… I don’t know… Things were starting to feel kind of stagnant. We were trying to write and it wasn’t… We were feeling kind of hindered by the situation with Brandon and the lineup as it was. The biggest issue was just that Brandon was not around, and that made it really difficult to write. And then, once we decided that we were just gonna keep writing without a drummer there, we were able to move on and things started moving quickly again, but when you’re just waiting around, you just sit there. We realized it’s been almost two years since Of Sound Mind came out, and Invisible White came out, and it didn’t reach as broad of an audience as an LP would, and it was different and a lot of people were scared that that was the direction we were going – not that I really give a shit, because frankly I think it’s our best record – but it was time to start moving forward with making a new record and letting people know that we are still a band. I know we don’t tour a lot, but we are very active and we’re constantly writing. It was just time to make moves.

You mentioned a lot of this record was written without drums behind it. The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of In Dreams and Time is this wash of melody that’s got layers of Moog, and the organs, and the guitars. It seems like that’s very much the focus. Do you think part of that might come from the fact that you were writing without that percussive base?

It could very well be. It’s kind of hard for me to look introspectively at how the creative process was affected by whatever factors. I’m not entirely sure why, I just have a hard time analyzing why our music is the way it is and how it becomes what it becomes. I just know that we sit down and write and what comes out comes out, and as a result, if you’re hearing a stronger focus on melody on this record than on our previous, it’s entirely possible. Especially maybe if you were to compare – I’m not sure that I could do this – but if you were to compare “Running in Circles” and “Corryvreckan” to the rest of the record. Those were the two songs written without, so it would be interesting if you could draw a difference between those two songs and the rest of the record. I’d be interested to see if maybe there is a correlation. Since you hear it. But I think we just write, and I think Invisible White got us really, really excited about melody again. We’ve always had a pretty strong focus on melody. I think Invisible White got us really excited about vocals, because we spent so much more time on vocals on that record than we ever have in the past, and we realized our vocals don’t suck as much as we think they do. We have a really hard time with that. Vocals do not come naturally to us and none of us really consider ourselves singers. We can write music for days. We’ve yet to hit a point where we felt that the well was running dry on music, but man, we labor over vocals pretty hard, and in the past, we’ve just chalked it up to, “Oh, we’re mostly instrumental and there’s vocals in there to spice things up,” but now we’re like, “Vocals are important, we should really try to make those better,” and I think the vocals on Invisible White excited us enough that we wanted to really bring that element back with a vengeance for the new record. And I think that’s going to be something that we stick with moving forward.

In light of that: Ancestors albums are so different one to the next, and I know there are lineup changes and different methods of writing, are you conscious at all of saying that you want to do something different every time out?

Yes and no? I mean, the one who’s always specifically pushing to do something that he’s got in his head is Jason, and I’m kind of the rock who’s like, “Let’s just write, let’s just write, let’s just see what happens,” and Jason always wants to talk about it, and Nick’s kind of along for the ride on either side. He likes to talk about it, but at the same time, he also just wants to write, and the writing dynamic in this band is very much the three of us, especially Jason and I. It’s definitely a full-band collaborative process, but the cores of the songs are usually written by Jason and I, and that push and pull between the two of us I think is what always – maybe I’m the reason we always sound like Ancestors, but Jason’s the reason that we constantly have a path. He’s definitely called me and said, “We should sit and talk about what’s going to be different about the music moving forward.” Even for whatever our next record is, we’ve started talking about it. And I’m like, “Well, let’s just see what happens.” But I know melody’s going to play an important role, and we’ve definitely discussed rhythm – I know rhythm’s going to become an important thing as well. We’ve talked about rhythms, changing up rhythms, changing up time signatures, mostly because we have the drummer to do it, and bringing in Daniel, he’s got a degree in music and the idea of writing around drums, him bringing in a drumbeat and us writing around that really excites us. Things may get interesting rhythmically – or they may not – but I think that rhythm will become more of a focus on the next record than it was on In Dreams and Time. …We feel like now is probably a good a time as any to keep things rolling forward. We’re never going to make the same record twice, that’s for damn sure.

Tell me about going from Of Sound Mind to Invisible White. It seemed like there was a real jump there.

Well, I don’t know if it’s as big a jump as it seems like it is. I mean, people talked about the jump between Neptune and Of Sound Mind like it was this huge jump – which I think it was.

I was gonna say, it was.

Right. But what people didn’t realize is how much time passed between those two records. Yeah, they came out a year apart, but they were actually written and recorded with way more time in between, so we had grown from a band that just didn’t really know what they were doing to a band that suddenly had a direction. Plus I wrote Neptune essentially myself, and Of Sound Mind was written as a band. That’s a huge difference between those two records that isn’t associated with their sound. I wrote Neptune. We wrote Of Sound Mind. And I think the difference between Of Sound Mind and Invisible White is we wrote Of Sound Mind and we had mapped out every element of Of Sound Mind, and we went into the studio on Invisible White with an acoustic guitar part for two of the songs and a piano part for one of the songs. So, we went into the studio having no idea what was gonna happen with those songs. They just kind of wrote themselves in the studio, which was a luxury that we can’t always afford, as much as I think it was a really awesome experience and I would love to do every record that way, we’re not Opeth. So we can’t afford that. We managed to do that one on a budget we can work with. But that record, I think we tracked 15 days on that record, which is ridiculous for us. But we were able to just stretch out and enjoy ourselves, and the only thing we knew was I wasn’t bringing my guitar that’s downtuned. I knew it obviously wasn’t going to be a heavy record, because I was bringing my Les Paul, that’s in standard tuning, and I was bringing acoustics. That was the only thing that was planned out, and we just went in and the songs mapped themselves, and we decided not to put any walls on it and limit ourselves to anything in particular. So that’s why that’s such a leap, I think.

So it was an actual change in process.

A complete change in process. A complete change in process, and I think a total, complete and utter exercise in self-indulgence. The fact that there are people out there who enjoy listening to it makes it rad, but there are a lot of people who absolutely hate it. I feel like if they would open themselves up to it a little bit, but it got a lot of criticism for being boring. There’s so much going on in it that I feel like you can’t just listen to it once and go, “Oh, it’s boring,” but it’s my record, so of course I think that. I think because of the time that we had to just really stretch out in the studio, I think it resulted in our best songs. That’s just my opinion. I think it’s the opinion of a lot of people in the band. I love the new record and I think it’s a really close second. Maybe I just like it so much because it’s different.

I think in that kind of situation, probably the process plays a lot into your opinion. If you enjoyed making it so much, that obviously gonna feed into your opinions of the songs.

That’s entirely possible. I like mellow music. I like when music sounds simple and isn’t, and that record sounds simple and isn’t. There’s something cool about that. That’s like Earth. Not to compare us to Earth in any way, but Earth sounds simple, and there’s a lot more going on there than first-glance listen would reveal. In a totally different way, mostly structurally, as opposed to the way there’s a lot going on in our songs mostly there’s a ton of things happening at once, but structurally there’s so much happening that how could you ever be bored by an Earth record? Or at least the newer incarnation of Earth. I understand how anybody could be bored by a drone record. But there’s so much happening there, there’s so much to cling to, there’s so much to latch onto. But, you know, that’s me.

I won’t argue the point of Invisible White being your favorite stuff, but for my money, In Dreams and Time is the best thing you’ve ever done.

And that’s totally cool, and I like hearing that more than I like hearing Invisible White is the favorite, because more than likely, our next record is gonna sound more like In Dreams and Time than Invisible White. Every progressing record that we put out is someone’s favorite. Depending on my mood, it might be my favorite as well – and I love it – I think it’s a really cool record. The press response to me has been interesting. I don’t usually buy into the press response to things too much, but it’s been interesting to me that the press response to Of Sound Mind was vastly better than it has been to In Dreams and Time. There hasn’t been a bad review of In Dreams and Time, but there’s been a lot of mediocre, where it seems like those same publications loved Of Sound Mind, and I don’t think those records are that different. They’re clearly the same band. If you liked Of Sound Mind, I don’t see why you wouldn’t like In Dreams and Time, but if you don’t want to move forward with us, fair enough.

Do you feel like Neptune with Fire, having that as your first release and having it already be so old and everything since written differently, do you think that set people up to expect something from Ancestors that you never intended to be?

Yeah. I think people thought we were gonna be a stoner rock band. And I think it put us in that hole where we constantly still get referred to as a stoner rock band, and I don’t think we’re that at all. Are we music for stoners? Yeah, but so’s jazz, and I can say without a doubt that we all listen to 50 times more jazz than we do stoner rock. None of us really listen to stoner rock. I mean, I like Sleep, I like Kyuss, and a good stoner rock band comes out once in a while, but to me, it’s a genre full of retread. That’s not exciting to me. I don’t know where I would put us, genre-wise, but we definitely got lumped into the stoner rock genre, and I won’t say that we’ve gone out of our way to spite it ever since, but there doesn’t really seem to be a way out. For example, Invisible White got put into a list of the best metal records. That’s not a metal record! It’s only put in that list because people think of us as a metal band. But that’s clearly not a metal record, and if Mono had put out that record, it would’ve been called post-rock. I feel like you can’t escape from where you started. And Neptune’s a cool record, it’s just not really us anymore. I like the song “Neptune with Fire” a lot. “Orcus Avarice” we’re never going to play again – it’s just not us. But it’s not a bad record, it’s just I feel like we’ve grown up a little bit.

I think it might be time to start labeling yourselves progressive.

See, I’m afraid of that too, though. I don’t want to label ourselves anything. I’d rather people just make up their own minds. We stopped putting references in our bio a long time ago. We specifically go out of our way to not mention other bands, because we’ve never tried to sound like anything. Is it obvious that we all love Pink Floyd? Of course it is. Who doesn’t love Pink Floyd? We love Pink Floyd, we love Neurosis, we love King Crimson. We love Nectar. We like a lot of progressive rock, and we like a lot of heavy music, but beyond that, we write like Ancestors. I write to what Jason brings in and he writes to what I bring in. Jason listens to more classical music than anything else and I listen to more jazz and blues than anything else.

Obviously frustrating.

It’s just silly. I’m not as frustrated as I sound, I just talk like that. I’m a lawyer.

Tell me about writing “First Light.”

Let me try and remember. I think that started with the beginning, which is weird with us. We often start at the end – not intentionally, it just happens to work out that way – but I think it started with that guitar riff, which I had been fucking around with for an hour before everybody got to practice one day. I just kind of stumbled into it, and I was like, “This is cool, it’s kind of almost like a ‘90s Failure kind of vibe to it.” That was before any other instruments were involved. It took on a color of its own when everybody else started playing, and then I think it started there and Jason brought in the end of the song, that chord progression. He brought that in on organ, and I thought it was beautiful, and once I understood it – it’s kind of long – before it repeats, it’s long – and once Nick and I understood it, I think we jammed on that organ part for two or three hours before we found where we liked to sit in it. Nick will write a bassline at practice, and he’ll be like, “Okay, now I get it,” and he’ll come back the next practice and he has this whole new bassline that’s always so much better than I could’ve ever imagined. He writes the coolest shit. I used to write all his basslines, like on the first record, and then he just started writing these basslines that I couldn’t even fathom. He’s so good. So he came in with his beautiful bassline, which accents what Jason’s playing in just the right way, that I can’t help but just want to solo over it. Sometimes I feel super-self-indulgent with the solos like that, but I don’t want to write a part over it, I just want to play. So that was determined that we were just gonna do that on that part, and have it have some up and down movement, and end big and end heavy, and it started to feel like the end of the record, but it didn’t feel like the end of the song, so we wrote the last two sections, which really started to feel like the end of the record, and then we just decided that it should probably be the end of the record (laughs), and then when we went in the studio and tracked that string arrangement over it, we really felt like it was the end of the record. That blew my mind. Jason wrote that arrangement; it’s incredible, and it’s only a cello and a violin, but they recorded like six parts each and it ended up sounding like an orchestra and it blew my mind. Then we needed something to bridge all of that together, and we were like, “Well, now we have Matt in the band” – who’s got these cool sequencers and modulars – “let’s give Matt a place to stretch out and we’ll just drone while Matt does his thing.” It was a really cool place for Matt to just put layer upon layer upon layer of synths, so we have that droney part in the middle that’s just a place for him to stretch out and do his sequencer thing. We managed to all play together. When we strung it all together, it worked as a song, and you don’t fight that. Jason wrote I think by far the best lyrics he’s ever written – the last lyrics being “To see the end of everything,” that was a total coincidence that it happened to be the last line of the record. So that worked out well. But that section in the middle, where the solo dies out and the vocals come back in, those are my favorite lyrics that we’ve ever had – “A city stands in dreams and time/In which reside a thousand lies/You can see the lights from waking life/And hear the cries in sacred night” – that’s fucking poetry. That’s kind of how it came together. The vocals came in last, but they sat in probably the easiest of anything we’ve ever written, probably just because the lyrics are so good. Don’t ask what they mean, but…

Well, now I want to ask what they mean.

(Laughs) You gotta go to Jason for that one. I’m just the guy who sings the lyrics – I don’t write ‘em. But Jason did a lot of singing on that song too. Jason did a lot of singing on the record in general, which was a change of pace. It’s usually mostly me.

It seemed like especially in that part you’re talking about where the vocals come back in – there’s a couple spots on the record where it feels like the vocals are genuinely arranged.

Yeah. That’s definitely one of those parts.

You said before that you’d wanted to focus more on vocals coming off of Invisible White. I think you can hear that.

That’s cool. That’s cool. I’m glad. I think the vocals on that song and the vocals on “On the Wind” are the ones I’m most stoked on. The vocals in “On the Wind,” that dual vocal where I start singing and Jason comes in with that much more moving vocal – that was all Jason. That was so cool. It sounds like pop vocals almost, but it just sits over this heavy part. What a cool part. That song could have been boring and he killed it with writing that vocal.

Not to talk about plans for the next record, but do you see yourselves doing more with that vocal interplay?

I’d like to. It’s where Jason fits in. That kind of vocal is where his voice works best, so I’d like to hear more of that for him. He has a tendency to push for things that he’s not capable of doing vocally, and it’s because he’s really ambitious musically, but his vocal range is one where he sounds great in certain things and he doesn’t sound good in others. That vocal came out exactly as you hear it. That was like a couple of takes and he was done, because that’s where his voice fits really well. I’d like to hear more of that from him, and I enjoyed the interplay. I’ve never heard how it comes off live, because I can never hear the vocals (laughs), so I don’t know. Maybe it sounds god-awful live.

The bass is really loud. That was what I learned at Roadburn.

Yeah. It was vibrating his pedal all around. I was trying so hard not to laugh.

Dude, you had the glass of tea by the front of the stage, and I was trying to point to the stagehand that the tea was going to fall on the board.

I saw that! I saw that and I couldn’t do anything about it. That was ridiculous (laughs). I’ve not experienced that before, where the pedals won’t even stay in place. Something about that frequencies, the way they resonated with that stage, but yeah, Nick’s bass is loud, and it’s louder at home. At home, he uses a 4×15 cab, but yeah, he’s loud, and I can’t hear what we sound like vocally (laughs), but yeah, I would like to do more of that kind of stuff in the future. Who knows what’s going to come off for the next record. We could come off sounding like a completely different band – nothing’s been written at this point. But I’m really proud of the vocals on those two songs, and I’d like to visit those places some more.

Is writing pretty much the plan for summer and fall?

We’ve got some shows scheduled and a few more in the works. We’d like to play some more shows out of town, but I don’t think we’ll be going too far away. We got another offer to go back to Europe, but I just don’t think we can afford it right now, so we’ll probably just focus on writing. Since we clearly are a band that doesn’t tour a lot, I think we’re just going to focus on being as prolific as possible. So just keep writing, I guess.

And no East Coast, ever. It’s never going to happen.

You know, man, it’s very difficult when all you can get is a week out of your band members. I’ll go on tour. We actually talked about the East Coast. When we nixed going back to Europe, East Coast was the next thing that came out, and I said, “Can I get a couple weeks out of you guys?” and they said no. Because everybody’s got jobs they’re afraid of losing. I tried. They want to go to Europe, they want to go to the East Coast. Nick was like, “Yeah, let’s do the East Coast,” and he’s like, “Cool, I can only get a week off work,” and I’m like, “Dude, we can’t go to the East Coast for a week. We gotta fly there, book enough shows to make back the money from the flights, I need more than a week out of you guys.” Nothing doing. Book me. I’ll go.

Come on out!

I’ll do one-man Ancestors shows (laughs).

Get the laptop going, you’ll be set. Who needs a band anyway, right? I’m pretty sure a Powerbook can vibrate the stage so the pedals go all over the place.

Hey, we brought a sampler that was our European Matt for the tour, why can’t it be the rest of the band? And actually, we’re going to be used to that, because Matt is no longer going to be playing live with us after this weekend. He was gonna leave the band and I talked him into staying, but he’s just gonna be playing on the records, which is unfortunate.

Is there a reason?

He’s got a young baby and a wife and he really just has to focus on providing for his family at this point in time. We all understood. He’s a great dude, and we don’t want to go through replacing him. There is nobody. There’s nobody to replace him with. We replaced Chico with him, and there’s really nowhere to go from there, so it’s either keep him around for records and if he feels like he can come out and play a show, he’s always gonna be looped in and know when the shows are, and if he can play, he will, but we won’t expect him at any shows, and you know, we’ll just keep on going without him, and hopefully when his baby is no longer a baby, he can start playing some shows with us, but at this point, I think he was starting to feel really bad about not making it to shows, not making it to practices. It was all becoming a little bit much for him, and he was feeling awful every time he had to cancel and didn’t want to feel that way anymore. I understand.

Will that affect the writing?

It might. I’m sure everything affects the writing. It’s nice to have him, but we’ll be sending him demos as we do things and he’ll be writing to the demos and sending us back what he does and we may augment things as we hear those. But I doubt it will affect too much except in the fact that he won’t be bringing in any parts that we write songs around. But that’s an unusual situation anyway. We’ll just take it as it comes. I’ more worried about the live thing, because we chose the Europe set specifically to be one where we could do it without him. I’m not sure how that’s gonna work going forward with the other songs. We may have to buy a proper sampler and use it more than we’d like to, or just go without those sounds. I don’t know. There’s some parts I just feel are empty without him, so we’ll figure something out.

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One Response to “Ancestors Interview with Justin Maranga: The Tribulations of Forward Motion, Including: To Whom Belongs the City”

  1. Steve Espinosa says:

    Thanks for posting this great interview. I’m a huge fan of Ancestors and completely agree that they’re one of the best American bands around right now. Good stuff.

    Thanks again

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