Premiere: Opium Eater Uncover Powerful New Single 'Babelsteps'

Premiere: Opium Eater Uncover Powerful New Single 'Babelsteps'

Tuesday 15th August, 2017 10:50AM

Wellington four-piece Opium Eater are lifting the lid off impressive new single 'Babelsteps' as they prepare to unleash their debut record entitled Ennui next month. Comprised of Craig Leahy (guitar, vocals), Jesse Hill (bass, vocals), Sam Leamy (guitar, vocals) and Matt Hill (drums), the group having lovingly described their sound as "post-traumatic sludgescapes", which seems perfectly apt given the ebbs and flows of 'Babelsteps'. The odyssey passes through many sonic vistas, moving from serene atmospherics through to intense sludginess over its nine-minute course, making it a captivating listen. Take a listen below while you read our interview with bandmember Craig Leahy...

Hi Opium Eater! Today you are unveiling brand new single ‘Babelsteps’. Can you explain a little bit about the title? What does it mean and how does it tie with the song?

The title 'Babelsteps' is a tangible representation of the feeling being portrayed in the lyrics. When you stare directly into the eyes of god and every fibre of your very being will be forever shattered into a million pieces. This is why we have unrest within our world.

Your last release was the epic 'Canis Major', just over two years ago. How have you evolved as a band since then?

We recorded 'Canis Major 'when we were writing a lot of the material for our full length debut. With Canis we wanted to explore a lot of the textural and atmospheric soundscapes we had begun incorporating into our writing but it didn't quite capture the intensity of the material we had written for our debut. Sam and I are kind of texture nerds when it comes to writing so A LOT of time went into crafting surreal soundscapes and textures alongside the bunch of, at times, ferocious music we had prepared for the debut. The end result was a set of songs that can be violent, sometimes overwhelming but also endearing to the listener.

‘Babelsteps’ has a very full and powerful sound. Where did you lay it down? What was key to the recording process?

We recorded with our man James Goldsmith over at Blue Barn Recording Studio. He loves our jokes. Absolutely the key to this process was doing as much as we could in a live band setting. We recorded all the drums, bass and rhythm guitars live together then went back to overdub with textures and guitar solos. This was done to do everything we can to replicate the intensity our live shows have become known for.

Were there any sonic touchstones that you looked to in trying capturing that particular sound?

Using REALLY fucking loud amps, oh man, like actually so loud. There was a wonderful group at a Samoan church next door to us on the studio days, they invited us over for lunch on one of the days too so James either has really dope sound proofing or they really dig guitar feedback.

You guys have got a new album coming out very soon!! Can you fill us in on the details?

The album is titled Ennui and we are set to release on Wednesday 13th of September. Ennui will be available on Spotify, iTunes, Bandcamp and of course, for you guys who want us to be able to pay rent, on CD through our Bandcamp or Facebook page.

Photo by Stella Gardiner


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