Soviet Dolls is a new electronic pop band out of Rochester. There new EP “Secrets, Lies” is being released tonight on their Bandcamp at 5pm. we met up with the band to talk about the new EP and how the band got started.
So tell us a little about the new EP “Secrets, Lies” coming out.
Matt: We have been working on it since last December. We hooked up with Hannah and started tracking continually until about last month.
Stephen: Matt and I had been working on this project for awhile without a vocalist.
Matt: We had been looking for a vocalist for a while before we met Hannah. Originally Steve and I got together just to write. We put together a few songs and started auditioning for singers. My sister showed me a video of Hannah singing, we ended up getting together with her and we have been working on this project ever since.
Stephen: We weren’t sure if we were going to do a full length or not. Eventually we decided we just want to get some of our music out.
How did the idea for Soviet Dolls come about?
Stephen: Matt and I have been in bands together for years. We were kind of looking to do something new for a change. We have been in rock bands before, but we have always been into electronic music. We wanted to utilize more of our pop influences, and some of the more obscure stuff that we like. We wanted to feature a good vocalist, but neither Matt nor I are good vocalists. Luckily we found Hannah, and it has worked out.
Hannah: This is the first project or band that I have ever been in. I have been singing as long as I can remember but I have always kept to myself, not singing for anyone. My friend is Matt’s sister and she showed him a video of me singing. It kind of all just came together.
Matt: Usually when someone tells you their friend sings you just kind of roll your eyes. Everyone has a friend that can “sing”. But when we saw the video we realized that Hannah actually can sing (laughs).
Stephen: It was nice. We had tried out a handful of other people, but it didn’t click with what we were doing. When Hannah came down, she picked up our songs and idea real quick, everything fell together after that.
Matt: It was a little bit of a challenge writing something that someone else was going to sing. I was so used to writing something that is in my own vocal range. Hannah has a much longer vocal range so it let me step out of the box, it really opened some creative doors for our project.
Hannah: We defiantly have meshed together recently; at first it was just trying to figure each other out and how far I could push myself. I think when I started I wasn’t to sure how big my vocal range was and how it could work. Now I have gotten much better.
So does Matt do most of the writing for the band?
Matt: No. Steve and I were writing before we met Hannah, so she kind of just stepped into it originally. As time went on we started getting together for practice, sitting down, and going over our music as a group.
Hannah: Before Matt would send me a scratch, I would learn it and go sing it. Now we meet up and talk about new songs and are constantly tweaking the songs and writing new things.
Stephen: She has become a more integral part of the new process. Before she came into a half formed project, now we are all working together to make new material.
What are the plans after you release “Secrets, Lies”?
Matt: SO far the focus has just been on the release. After this, we are starting to work on a second record. We also want to put together a live show. Steve and I have been playing for years so booking has never been a problem, but we want to make sure everything is perfect before we put on a live show.
Stephen: The live show we want to have a pulse. We don’t want it to be a bunch of programming with vocals. We want to integrate actual live acts instead of just be a pre recorded live track.
Where did you get the EP produced?
Matt: We did a lot of the recording at home actually. Some preproduction stuff and vocals we did with Nick Murray, who is in the band, Filthy Funk, he played engineer as we laid Hannah’s vocal down. Half of the EP was then mixed half with Sam Puluzzi and GFI and the other half by Brian Moore at Red Booth Studios. There is a lot of different people involved.
Stephen: We utilized every source we had to reach the goals we set for ourselves. That’s why we had three different houses on it.
Do you think it is harder for local musicians to get their music out there?
Matt: I think it is harder and easier at the same time. Before bands started taking advantage of the internet it was easier for people to get on board with your music as long as you had a good product. People would get behind their music and go to shows. With social media and everything else, the landscape has changed so much that it is hard to get people to listen to your music. There are so many bands trying to get heard, you might get passed right over.
Steve: We went to a show a couple weeks ago; there was a better atmosphere at that show than any show I have been to in a long time. Everyone seemed to be having a good time and it made me feel good about what could be for this scene. Especially bands like us, we have a little more of a community than we did in the past.
Before people used to go to shows, and word a mouth was a huge deal. That died down a bit when everyone started putting their music online. I think now it is slowly starting to come back. There are more shows and bigger turn outs again, just a higher demand for bands to play live again.
There New EP “Secrets, Lies” is being released today at 5pm. Check it out