Published on October 18th, 2012 | by DigitalVagabond
Supersillyus Life Band Sneak Peak
Long ago, a young boy set off on an adventure from the City of Angels. His goal, to get an education and start the rest of his life as a professional musician. Little did he know his ambition, twisted wit, and love for strange time signatures would form what I consider to be the premiere supergroup from the North East music scene. I’ve had the pleasure of watching this project grow for the last couple of years, and I need to make it very clear, that this project is unlike anything my senses have ever been exposed to. Supersillyus Life Band is not only a supergroup of epic proportions, featuring members of lespecial, Wobblesauce, D.V.S*, and more, but it is living proof that dreams do come true.
Witness the unveiling of the heavily anticipated Supersillyus Life Band at this years Lespectacle October 27th in Boston!
Below we’ve put together a handful of questions for Rob Uslan a.k.a. “Sillian” and he gave us a ton of insight into his new project…
Describe the transformation from the digital “Supersillyus” to the Supersillyus “Life” Band?
The “transformation” began about over a year ago, when I decided to actively begin seeking out musicians to play in the band. The hardest part for me was finding people who were not just capable and willing to learn the music, but would also enjoy the project. I had been hanging out with lespecial a lot and I got to know them as incredibly creative, unique, and hilarious individuals, but I also got to know them as wildly talented musicians. It honestly got to a point where I really believed these guys might be the only ones perfect for such an immense task. I asked Luke Bemand and Rory Dolan to play drums and bass. If you consider me and my electronics the brain, Luke and Rory are definitely the heart and the soul. Them wanting in was the first time it hit me that this long time dream was actually on its course to becoming a reality. It hit me hard. Their legitimate enthusiasm for wanting to play my music motivated me… hard. I had to go bigger. Gotta’ get a guitarist. While I play guitar, I knew I would be too busy with the mixing and the synths and the computer to shred as well as a dedicated guitarist. That’s when I asked my good friend Derek VanScoten to rip the gitfiddle properly for my live band. I also recruited Mike McCarthy from Wobblesauce to play additional keys and synths. Now that I had my Megazord assembled, I had to teach them all my music. That’s when the transformation really began. I built massive Ableton sets with all of my music stemmed out by instrument to figure out what sounds from my computer could be replicated live by a human and what couldn’t. That process narrowed the amount of stems and channels I would have to operate live. It also completely transformed the sound of my music… it’s a whole different beast now. And it’s definitely a beast.
How has practice been going, everyone lives in different areas, has this been an issue?
I knew right from the beginning that by using musicians who constantly kick ass at what they do, finding time to get everybody together to practice was going to prove difficult. And indeed it did, which is why I’m glad I started a year ago. Five musicians who live in three different states were hard to gather at once often. Yet, their commitment always matched mine. I found I had to travel rarely to work on music and practice with the other musicians. Suffice it to say their talent and dedication made my job much easier than I thought it was going to be. Everyone believes in the project, and you can see it more and more every time we rehearsed.
What technology/hardware have you been using to enable the live band?
Mostly humans… playing live instruments. I’ve got five of my best friends, and the most talented musicians I know, as my main hardware workhorse. Best technology upgrade, if you ask me. They’ve completely enabled my dream to become a reality. They’ve made the band what it is. Most of the hardware is all inside the computer. I have digital tracks split into stems by instrument so I can manipulate/effect/adjust/send/cutout whatever I choose. Mike’s laptop is also running synth software and we’ll both be having a few keyboards and synth toys on stage. We have everything electronic running through a mixer on stage to control monitoring and sub-mix to the front of the house. I’ll be playing a percussion rig as well.
Supersillyus and Ott. at their most recent show together at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA, click HERE for more photos of the show.
Will there be any other dates for Supersillyus Life Band?
We’re certainly open for booking. Look out for us in the following months. This is only the beginning.
What does “Life Band” mean?
Naming the band was certainly a decision that had to be made. I find that too often producers will add a drummer to their act and tack on the word “live” to their name. Let me be clear, any step to upgrade a performance on any level is and should be welcomed and praised. People should constantly be encouraged to step their game up in any manner they can or want. That being said, we all can agree on the fact that in this day and edge, the definition of the word “live” is incredibly blurry. I need to get the point across that this project is so much more than just “giving the music more of a live feel.” I figure rather than try and fight an evolving language I decided I didn’t want to use the word. I didn’t want a name to be something obtuse or pretentious. I wanted to get two points across, one being that it was the music of Supersillyus, and that it was a live band playing it… all without using the word “live.” I don’t remember specifically when it clicked, but the simple letter (and in effect, word) change just made perfect sense. The band is bringing my music to life… they are the Life Band. But as to not exclude or confuse I felt this time around we would just keep it as Supersillyus Life Band.
Current Line Up:
“Steph Barrak Music”
“Bill-Kwan The Chef”
Come see the premier of Supersillyus Life Band at this years Lespectacle October 27th in Boston!
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His individually catered DJ sets have directly supported word class producers: Kalya Scintilla, Thriftworks, Bird Of Prey, Whitebear, Opiuo, PhuturePrimative, Kaminanda, Mr.Bill, Killowatts, Skytree, BlueBoyProductions, lespecial and many more.
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