THE guys of Wyland…
PHOTO CREDIT: Kelsey Ayres
have been speaking about their new track, Nowhere Now, and what inspired it. I was keen to know how they all got together and whether they share musical tastes; whether there are tour dates and which albums are important to them.
Ariella, Ryan and Zach speak about their favourite music memories and how they chill away from music; which rising artists we need to watch and if they have plans afoot for 2019 – they each select a cool song to end things on.
Hi, guys. How are you? How has your week been?
Fast! The days just fly by.
For those new to your music; can you introduce yourselves, please?
Ariella: I'm Ariella. I play synth and sing backup. We are an Alternative-Rock band based out of the Meadowlands in NJ. Our sound is a little worn and a little new - like finding an old adventure book tucked away in an attic. Ryan has always pulled inspiration from U2 and Coldplay and you can hear that influence along with some Arcade Fire, Mumford; Kodaline etc. We're a little obsessed with the U.K. and Ireland.
Ryan: I’m Ryan. I play guitar and piano and sing for Wyland. Everything stated above is true.
Zach: My name is Zach. I am the tallest member and bassist of the group and I’m currently obsessed with David Byrne and Star Trek.
Chris and Patrick aren’t here but Chris is our drummer and he’s really handsome. Patrick is our guitarist and he is also equally attractive.
Nowhere Now is your latest single. Is there a tale behind it?
Ariella: Of course. Nowhere Now started as a ‘Frankenstein’ which is what we call it when Ryan takes two separate music ideas and stitches them together. The song has been through many, many lives. We sent a few demos to Philip Magee and he took it where it needed to go. We gave him the body of Nowhere Now; he gave it blood.
Do you think there will be more material next year?
Zach: We have hours of voice memos from all of us that might us busy for the next three years. I would say there is a strong possibility that more songs are coming.
Ryan: Yeah. We’re always working on new music. We’re just extremely picky about what comes out. I feel as though a bar has been raised and we can’t release anything that doesn’t meet that bar.
Ariella: Our goal is to write and release as often as we can though. We recorded a few really beautiful acoustic tracks with our friend Ben of Old Sea Brigade, which we'll release after the singles are out.
Wyland formed in New Jersey. What brought you together?
Ariella: Time. We've been through a number of lineup changes that could have ended the band but Ryan was patient and just had faith in time. Our drummer Chris was a mutual friend of Ryan’s. They met while Chris was in another band. Our bassist Zach moved to New Jersey from Boston after meeting Ryan at a show in Syracuse and our guitarist Patrick responded to an extremely old ad on Bandmix that Ryan posted maybe four years prior. At some point, magic happened and everything clicked.
PHOTO CREDIT: Kelsey Ayres
Do you share similar tastes? Who are you inspired by?
Ariella: Not at all. We all come from very different backgrounds. Ryan and I share the most similarities when it comes to musical taste. A few of my favorite bands who inspire me are Lord Huron, The Staves; Mumford & Sons, Florence (and the Machine) and The Lone Bellow.
Ryan: I was raised on Boy and The Joshua Tree by U2. I really adore Coldplay’s older catalogue as well as anything Radiohead, Mumford & Sons; Of Monsters and Men, Keane; Elbow, Noel Gallagher…and the list goes on and on.
Zach: I’m very inspired by Classic-Rock. The energy and ability of The Who, the showmanship and creative mastermind that is Peter Gabriel; the epicness and power of U2. That’s where I come from. I appreciate bands like Coldplay and Mumford & Sons because they bring some of that feelgood power that I personally think has been lost with artists and the industry after the mid-'90s.
What do you hope to achieve by the end of 2018?
Ariella: Really just hoping to have a successful release and a lot of love on Spotify.
Ryan: World domination could be exciting but, yeah, I’d settle with a successful release of Nowhere Now.
Do you already have plans for 2019?
Ariella: Of course! We're releasing new tunes and writing. Always writing.
Have you got a favourite memory from your time in music so far – the one that sticks in the mind?
Ariella: Making music in Ireland. The whole month we spent there was like a dream.
Ryan: Ireland was definitely a highlight but we had the luxury of playing the Alabama Shakes afterparty at 2015’s Gentlemen of the Road tour in Seaside Heights, New Jersey. I think that was probably one of my favorite memories.
Zach: I think fondly back to when we set out on tour in 2016 in an RV we borrowed from a friend. The transmission went within four hours of the tour and we were stranded in Baltimore. We had to be in Washington, DC that night but we all knew it wasn’t happening. We ended renting a Penske truck, packed it with everything we had and we finished the tour. It was rough but those experiences made us a stronger unit.
Which one album means the most to each of you would you say (and why)?
Ariella: One of our albums? This new one. The energy and the texture in the sound hits just right. Lonesome Dreams by Lord Huron always takes me on a journey. I just love that album. I used to be a big ‘Hardcore’ fan and I would be doing my young self a disservice if I didn't mention Underoath. I know every one of their albums by heart.
Ryan: Certainly in love with our latest record. I think an album that means a lot of me is really anything Aaron Dessner works on. Frightened Rabbit, Lone Bellow…the man has a magical touch.
Zach: My all-time favorite record is The Who’s Quadrophenia. I love Pete Townshend’s style of writing. He digs up anger, sorrow; love and hope in such a beautiful way. The record helped me fall in love with playing bass and listening to music. It also was a record that made me feel like I was understood. It is about a guy who desperately wants to find his place in the world. I think we feel that way throughout our lives. Not a lot of well-known songs are on it but they pack a punch for me.
If you could support any musician alive today, and choose your own rider, what would that entail?
Ariella: Florence and the Machine, hands down. We do not deserve her. My rider would be simple: lots of water and chocolate. -
Ryan: I may get some shade for this, but I’d probably tear up if we could open for U2. My rider would be water, wine; chocolate, tortilla chips and guacamole.
Zach: I would love to tour with Coldplay, actually. I know we fit in their world and traveling around with them would be a dream. In my rider, I would only ask for a few things. A culinary dish specific to the area we’re in and a local beer.
Do you have tour dates coming up? Where can we catch you play?
Yes! We're going on tour with this rad Canadian band, Valley. We're doing a leg in Canada and then headed down the east coast, from 11/24-12/15. (Full details on our website).
What advice would you give to new artists coming through?
Make the music you want to make. Believe in what you’re doing and keep going, keep releasing. Don't sit and wait for an invitation.
IN THIS PHOTO: Old Sea Brigade
Do you get much time to chill away from music? How do you unwind?
Ariella: Ryan and I are filmmakers as well, so we unwind from music by writing scripts or filming (or binge-watching on Netflix).
Zach: I unwind by listening and playing more music. There’s no escape from music for me. I’ll learn a song that I connect with and try to find room for personal improvement. I like to keep expanding my mind with music.
Finally, and for being good sports; you can each choose a song and I’ll play it here (not any of your music - I will do that).
Ariella: The Staves - Sleeping in a Car
Ryan: Frightened Rabbit - I Wish I Was Sober
Zach: Sad Song Backward - Jake Shears
PHOTO CREDIT: @kelseyayres