Interview & Review
My favorite song by I Am Nova comes from their first album, the song’s name is “I Need”. “Yeah, we didn’t really have a sound back then. “I Need” and those songs from the first album, we recorded in a really small room and we didn’t really know what it would sound like. We didn’t really have a target or goal, we just moved along with it. So that was a certain sound. But now we’re trying a lot of different sounds and that’s why we’re spending a lot of time in the studio.” They tell me it is fair to say that they are always experimenting with their sound on every song.
A Swedish rock band named Mando Diao and British pop-rock bands such as the Libertines and Arctic Monkeys were all influential bands for them in the beginning. “We actually played in different forms of bands when we were like six years old, we went to the same school back then, so we’ve been listening to music together for a long time,” they tell me. As for what influences their songs, “it’s been a lot of songs I think about, it’s a boring answer in a way, but love songs. It happens to most bands I guess. If you’re in a relationship, I feel like you write different songs than when you’re not in a relationship. But you know, everyday stuff that happens in your life, all the emotions you go through, I think these influence a lot.” However, the band is focusing their sound towards more of a pop sound but keep their rock sound too.
Their second album, Fit For The Circus (an album I enjoyed listening to very much), was mainly breakup songs because “both of us had just gotten out of two relationships.”
When asked about their fan base they tell me, “that’s a tough one. It’s mostly been, ‘cause we played quite a lot around our town in Sweden, whenever we play near here we have a lot of people coming to our gigs. But it’s been a little tougher to go outside of the west coast. It’s hard to describe a fanbase, we don’t have a huge fanbase either, we don’t get a lot of underwear sent to us in the mail. Not yet. I think we need to reach more people here in Sweden. But the fans we have in Sweden at our concerts are pretty energetic, our live show is very energetic. It’s very intense.” They do have a fan base in America because one of their band members “lived in America when we first started releasing our songs because I went to college in Georgia, and from there I think my friends in America sort of passed it on.”
“Touch Her Hips” is quite an interesting song… “I think we both think the lyrics are funny. ‘Cause it’s sarcasm the entire song, basically… We went to school together and we discussed being 15 and the attraction you’d feel to girls– or guys, I suppose– when you’re in that age. And it’s very premature. We talked about how premature it was. So the song is reminiscing being in that age, I guess. And when you’re at that age you’re a little bit stupid in certain ways so that’s why the song is a little stupid too. All the songs you’ve heard, we’ve recorded, mixed and mastered ourselves. Right now we just have a manager. We broke up from a record label last year. Everything moved really slow with this label and it was quite problematic for us ‘cause we wanted to move a lot faster. Which sort of resulted in us being a little bit down, a bit bored of music for a while. It sort of broke our spirits. But after we broke up with them, when we built the studio ourselves, we’ve had a whole different freedom in creating what we do. So I’d say it’s a very exciting time for I Am Nova.” They both play all the instruments in every song, except the drums. I Am Nova hasn’t released more than two songs in a few years, “so it’s obviously way too little. But that’s because we were stuck in the record deal so we couldn’t make music and release it ourselves. So that sort of really slowed down the process. And when you don’t release songs, you don’t get new followers because people want new material, usually. I’m glad you found us anyway, but a lot of people want more songs and we do too. So now we’re working on writing a bunch of really, really good songs that we can release so that something is happening. We’re really looking forward to that.”
Jonathan Larsson took vocal lessons in High School, and Carl-Oscar Andersson took private guitar lessons for a few years. In other words, they have both self-taught themselves how to play most of their instruments in the band such as keyboard and bass.
In the next 5 years, the band is hoping to come out with a hit song, and have the song go viral around the world. “It’s two different things because the aim or the goal number one is probably to make songs that we ourselves think is really good, that we can be proud of. And then hopefully that will sort of result in a few songs going global or viral or something.” They want to come out with at least 2 or 3 albums, and tour outside of Sweden. “Hopefully, this interview can open some doors– people read this interview on your blog and we’re on our way.” As of the day of the interview (10/7/2017), the I Am Nova is working on 15 new songs, producing 3 of those songs, and the new songs are hopefully coming out in the next year. “Hopefully. It’s a little bit different from what we’ve done before, possibly leaning more towards ‘radio friendly’, like, more keen to be played on the radio. But not completely towards that. We still have the rock influences. Just more tending towards that.”