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Arcane Roots

Rock Sound
Rock Sound 28 February 2011 at 08.09

What do you get when you put messy post-hardcore, soaring rock and a million different ideas into a blender? No idea, but this lot come close.

Welcome to the batshit insane world of Arcane Roots. Normally when we do these little intro pieces we'll try and pick out a few bands they sound like so potential fans can identify a few features and hopefully latch onto them but these Kingston mentalists don't sound like anyone, at all, ever.

Okay, there's bits of At The Drive-In's skewed punk assault, a dash of Tubelord's high-pitched pop sensibility, a sprinkling of Glassjaw and some 10-fingered riffing that wouldn't be out of place on a Meet Me In St Louis album, but when Arcane Roots are in full flight they're brilliantly uncategorisable. And rather than pretentious their music instead comes across like a glorious mess of ideas that feels invigorating - like they've hit up some brand new genre that hasn't been tapped yet. 'You Are', which is available for streaming below, is a prime example of that, as it's got enough stunning parts to have been split up over about four songs but is instead a total powerhouse powerhouse of a track.

We caught up with guitarist and vocalist Andrew Grove so he could make the case for why Arcane Roots are worth your time - and they really are.

Arcane Roots - 'You Are' by RockSoundMagazine
What was the point where you went from liking playing music to deciding to be in a proper, full-time band?
"For all of us, it wasn't so much a single moment, but more like a gradual progression. It's been the single most rewarding part of our lives, and we've only ever got out of it what we've put in, which has been a whole lot. We've been incredibly lucky to work with some amazingly talented people along the way, each of which have shaped and inspired us as a band and pushed us to better ourselves and our art. We started playing music together because we felt like we could bring something both unique and exciting to it, and with every experience we have, and response we get, only affirms our desire to continue."

What was the first album you listened to that totally humbled you?
Adam: "RHCP - 'Blood Sugar Sex Magik' - Amazingly consistent songwriting, the level of musicianship and brotherhood on that album inspired me to become a better musician and play with others."
Daryl: "BT - 'This Binary Universe' - This album totally redefined creative electronic music for me. It forced me to think about my own relationship with music, and its relationship with the listener. That record had such a positive effect on my playing and inspired me to become a better artist."
Andrew: "Camille - 'Le Fil' - This record completely transformed the way I write and appreciate music. It inspired me to look beyond any conceptions I had of what a song should be, and to create music as multi-dimensional media, with music, art and experience coming together all at once."
Arcane Roots - 'Long And Low' by RockSoundMagazine
What inspires you on a day-to-day level to write music? Have you ever considered jacking it all in for an easier life?
"Everything and anything, our songs are very personal and often have a host of ideas and concepts within them. We are inspired by everything around us and our daily lives; we write music that expresses that concisely. The busier things get for us as a band, the more eager we are to write and create. With all the endless hard work, blood and sweat, we wouldn't want to be doing anything else. We are all dedicated and passionate in what we do and we don't plan on ever slowing down."

There are too many bands these days: discuss.
"True, there are too many bands around, some awful, but loads of amazing bands that we feel never get the credit they deserve. It's always healthy to have a lot of competition, it forces you to be much more creative in your music and presence, so it can only be a good thing. It's so much easier these days to share music and find stuff you would have never heard of otherwise. There's less barriers between the artist and the fans, and you need to learn how to embrace that. With the music industry feeling so saturated it easy to get lost amongst the sea of bands, but it pushes us to work even harder to rise above it."

If Arcane Roots was a film, which film would it be? And if you had to write a new soundtrack for a film which one would you choose?
"There Will Be Blood; full of brooding intensity, manly beards and an awesome soundtrack. We'd love to do a Trent Reznor-esque score to a a Michel Gondry film, or the soundtrack to the new Silent Hill (with a half decent director)."

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