INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN
Nocean are an emerging female-fronted alternative rock four-piece from Sweden.
Formed in 2013, the outfit have spent the last four years working hard on perfecting their sound and building a solid fan base.
It looks as if 2017 is going to be the year that the Stockholm quartet make a big breakthrough on the rock scene, with a new album, a tour of Europe, and a set at the prestigious Sweden Rock festival, which will see them share the bill with the likes of Aerosmith and Steel Panther, all to come.
I spoke to frontwoman Hanna about the band’s journey up to now, and what should be some exciting times ahead for them.
How did the band get together initially?
Nocean started in Stockholm four years ago as a hard rock band. Me and Ozzy (guitar) found some members on a web forum called Band Finder. We struggled with finding the right members in the beginning, since we knew from the start that we wanted to take this band far. But then, we found Daniel, Daniel and Dave and we worked together for two years. We released a debut album on a record label, went on tour abroad for the first time and had great fun.
However, last summer, we were just left with myself and Ozzy again, as the other members had decided to leave due to personal reasons. Fortunately though, we found Sara (bass) and Patrick (drums) soon afterwards and we’ve been playing together ever since! Recently, we’ve been writing new material and we are now also booked to play at this year’s Sweden Rock Festival.
How did the name Nocean come about?
Our former bass player suggested we call ourselves Notion, I then played with the word, so that it eventually became Nocean.
To somebody discovering your music for the first time, how would you describe it to them?
We play melodic, alternative rock with metal influences and electronic elements. We want, most of all, for our music to be memorable, heavy and grand!
What are the band’s musical influences?
We all have different influences, ranging from Thirty Seconds To Mars to Dark Tranquility! One person that we do all like though is Devin Townsend and his heaviness on stage.
What would you say was your approach to songwriting?
We all write the songs together in the rehearsal room, and then someone often comes up with a foundation that we can build on. We record our songs in our own studio, so we record them along the way. Ozzy is our sound engineer as well as our guitarist, and he does magical work to our productions.
Where does the inspiration come from for the band’s lyrics?
I write all the lyrics and they are often about self-development or making changes. It’s like letters to people who need to read them. I find inspiration around me, from both people and things that I know.
What’s the experience of playing live and touring for you?
We have played almost 60 shows since the end of 2014, we’ve been on tour abroad (England, The Netherlands, Germany), and we’ve played many small pubs around Stockholm. So far, we have only played small festivals, so we’re very much looking forward to playing at Sweden Rock this summer, as it will be our first big festival experience!
What has the band got lined up in the near future?
Besides coming to England again next month (playing in London, Tamworth and Birmingham), we’ll, of course, be playing at Sweden Rock, recording our second album, and also looking for opportunities with a new label and maybe even a booking agency. Since we’ve been confirmed for Sweden Rock, we have had a lot of suggestions, but we’re going to take our time with it, because we don’t want to rush anything.
You mentioned a second album just then. What are the plans for that?
We’re writing right now, and we have decided to take our sound in a new direction with this one, as our earlier releases were more in the hard rock/metal genre, and the first album was more of an experiment to find where we wanted to land.
With new members, we have found our new way of writing and expressing ourselves, and that will show through with the new album, which we’re planning to complete by the end of this summer, with a release date some time in the autumn.
What is the band’s long-term aim?
We want to go as far as we possibly can, to play on bigger stages, to larger crowds, and also, to be able to make a living out of our music!
NOCEAN’S SECOND ALBUM WILL BE RELEASED LATER THIS YEAR.
FOR FURTHER INFO ON THE BAND, CHECK OUT THESE SITES:
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: http://www.noceantheband.com/