‘MALKA‘, are a New York based 4 piece outfit who have created a sonic landscape full of psychedelic impressions, stunningly emotive shoegaze, intertwined with dream-pop flair, reminiscent in parts to the amazing early 90’s sounds of ‘Lush’ on their latest release entitled ‘The Constant State’.The Primal Music Blog caught up with the band and interrogated them with questions about their influences & future plans.
1) Who are you? Tell us about the formation of the band & your history?
Darko:Malka is Mike Dawson on drums, David Ciauro on bass/vocals, EJ DeCoske on guitar/synth/vocals, and me, Darko Saric, on guitar/synth/vocals . Mike and I have known each other since 2007. We have played together in a couple of bands: In Flight Radio and Shy Around Strangers (in which David also played). In early 2013 I began to work on some demos and asked Mike if he wanted to record the drums and be part of the project. He liked the demos and after finishing 5 songs (all of them in Spanish) we asked David and EJ to join the band, and Malka was formed. By the end of 2013 we released two singles: “Mirame” and “Mientras Se Respira”. We got a bunch of nice reviews and ended up as a finalist in the category of “Best New Artist 2013-Dreampop/Psychedelic” in The Deli Magazine NYC. In 2014 we decided to record new music, and the band’s sound evolved. We experimented and tried to find a sound that could represents the four of us as a whole. The result is a stronger sound with more dynamism now that we have three vocalists as David and EJ are also lead singers in the band.
2) Who are your biggest influences?
Darko: I like British bands from the late 70’s and 80’s like The Cure, U2, The Smiths, and Joy Division, and also British bands from the 90’s like Radiohead, Suede and Lush.
Mike: Regarding my drumming in Malka, my influences include Mitch Mitchell, Matt Chamberlain, Steve Jordan, Ronnie Vannucci, Jon Theodore, Darko Saric, Sigur Ros, Carlton Barrett, Patrick Keeler, and Marky Ramone.
David:Mastodon, Russian Circles, Refused, Beastmilk, Joy Divison, and Led Zeppelin.
EJ:Tame Impala, Mogwai, The Beatles, Archive, and A Place to Bury Strangers.
3) Describe your sound?
Darko:We try to convey a lot of emotion with our music, and that’s why we rely on so many genres of music. Sometimes our music can be aggressive, and sometimes it can be peaceful.
Mike:Cinematic, atmospheric, moody, rock .
David:Our songs tend to evoke a lot visuals for me: colors, specific places, seasons. Each song puts me in a different place.
EJ:Eclectic and cinematic.
4) What inspired you to start making music?
Darko:Music was always an important part of my life. My parents had me study music when I was 4 years old, and I was able to be at the conservatory at age 7. As teenager I was hearing music all day long and trying to put a band together with my friends. That moment when you are immersed with the guitar and all sense of time and space disappears is priceless.
Mike:For as long as I can remember all I ever wanted to do was to be in a band, so it’s hard to say what inspired me to start making music. But what inspired me to pursue music as a career was a combination of endless hours of MTV, listening to my father and brother’s record collections, experiencing the power of drumlines in holiday parades in my town, and the support I received from my music teachers in the public school system.
David:For as long as I can remember, music always inspired me. I started playing drums when I was three. For whatever reason, I always felt connected to music, and that I was able to communicate far better through music than I could with words. I’m left-handed, but play every instrument right-handed, so my love of music was so innate it revealed itself before my handedness.
EJ:I find comfort in listening and creating music and it has brought me stability in many hard (and not so hard) times. Music is where the magic is.
5) What do you love about shoegaze?
Darko: What I love about Shoegaze is that is the music genre that brought the artistic element back to pop music. Underneath the wall of reverb, distortion and fx lies a song with a very strong pop sensibility. It’s not music for sale or entertainment but it is for anyone who wants to pay attention.
6) Why is it important for the world to hear your music? What kind of message would you like to share with international listeners?
For us, what is important is to make music that truly represents us and that we feel passionate about. We want to connect with people, so the idea is that they can relate to the music and the emotions we are trying to convey.
7) What are some of your favorite bands or albums?
Darko: The albums that I’m listening these days are: 23 (Blonde Redhead), Fantastic Planet (Noveller), Oshin (Diiv), Dive (Tycho), Warpaint (Warpaint)
Mike:Are You Experienced?, Led Zeppelin I, A Love Supreme, Bob Marley Legend, Road to Ruin.
8) Musically, what are your bands plans over the next year?
The following months we are going to promote the EP. We are very lucky that Shameless Promotion PR is helping us with spreading the word – Shauna is amazing! In June/July we are going to play some shows and then we are hitting the studio and begin working on the next album.
Big, big thanks to ‘Malka‘ for participating in this interview. You can check out what we thought of their latest EP release ‘The Constant State‘ – HERE. Then you can go over and get yourselves a copy here – Malkanyc.Bandcamp.Com