Interview with Roberto Ercoli (Guitar with Jaodae) and Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?
RE: We are an instrumental progressive metal band – riff-centered, low tunings, unpredictable song structures. More importantly, we’re just three dudes who make music ‘cause we love it.
PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.
RE: The three of us have been jamming together since our university days; we all went to University of Windsor together and were some of the few metalheads in our program. After graduating, Spencer Robson and I both lived in Toronto and met up to start Jaodae as a two-piece in 2015. We were just casually jamming at first; it took us until 2019 to release our first album, Cast in Ash, and start gigging. Justin Bath, who’s a St. Catherinite, joined us on bass this year.
PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?
RE: The three of us have pretty diverse influences, but I think we all have a lot of common ground in music that is a good mix of heavy and heady. Some of my personal favourites that have influenced my songwriting are Gojira, Meshuggah, The Contortionist, Enslaved, Mastodon, Baroness, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Jacob Collier, The Mars Volta, and black midi.
PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?
RE: Personally, I’d like to get my production skills to a more professional quality. I’m self-taught in the field and have been working hard to improve over the past few years. For the band, I’d love for us to play a major festival in the future.
PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?
RE: I’m most proud of our upcoming releases that I’ve personally mixed and mastered. I think they sound killer and I’m really excited to share them.
PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?
RE: Difficult, naturally, but made easier by Spencer being an absolute beast at promoting and finding new fans. He’s very much the face of the band, whereas I’m more of the behind-the-scenes (sitting-at-my-computer-endlessly-tweaking-the-mix-on-the-latest-single) guy.
PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?
RE: We’ve recently teamed up with Black Throne Productions for our upcoming releases; they’ve been instrumental in not only finding platforms for our music to be heard but also getting us on some pretty great bills recently. Our next gig is April 1st at the Red Papaya in Guelph, playing with Viledriver, CNTRL, and Bloody Monroe.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?
RE: I ain’t dying on any hills for Spotify any time soon; I see them as kind of a necessary evil. It’s an important platform to be on in order to get your music heard, but they have a pretty horrible track record with how they treat and compensate artists. And people are inevitably always going to download music. I say stream and download all you like, but if you can’t/won’t spend money to support the artists you enjoy, at the very least share them with a friend.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
RE: “No Quarter” by Led Zeppelin. Slaps so hard when the main riff hits after two very spicy and seldom-used sharp eleventh chords. Fantastically moody. Immaculate.
PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?
RE: Maybe a very boomer gripe to have, but it’s obvious that the music industry, at its highest levels, has continued to incentivize the safest and most marketable sounds, with little room for risk or failure. Makes perfect sense as a business model, but from an artistic standpoint the consequences are catastrophic; there’s an ever-growing lack of sonic complexity in popular music. I’d love to see more room for interesting and complex harmonic vocabulary to make it’s way back into the mainstream.
PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?
RE: We have an EP called Chimaera out on March 17th, which will be followed by an even bigger release this summer. We’re also working on getting some new material up to speed so that we can start playing some new bangers live this summer.
PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?
RE: You can find all our music for purchase and download here: jaodae.bandcamp.com. All other links (socials, streaming, etc) can be found here: linktr.ee/jaodae
Band/Artist location – Toronto, Ontario
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