Last Friday, Dayton’s To No End released their second album, Peril & Paracosm. It follows Curio, which the band released last year.
Curio was accompanied by a music video for the song “Somethin’ Wrong With You”. It was released in March of 2013 and featured, Shannon Mary Dixon (Hughes the Force, Dead Grandma) and a special guest appearance by actor Jason Mewes (Clerks, Mallrats, Jay and Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie). The video was produced by Absolute Value Pictures in Los Angeles, CA and debuted on SModCo Internet Television (S.I.T.) a YouTube brand channel created by writer/director Kevin Smith. “Somethin’ Wrong With You” was the channel’s first music video and to date it has been viewed tens-of-thousands of times. View the music video here: “Somethin’ Wrong With You” – To No End
Since the success of their first release the band has continued to write, tour, and do several radio performances across the midwest. In September, they were selected to be a ReverbNation featured artist for a week and are this month’s Artist of the Month on Buckeye Music Magazine.
Ghettoblaster recently spoke with guitarist/vocalist Nick Dellaposta about the album. This is what he told us about it.
When did you begin writing the material for your most recent album?
Most of the new album was written in the last year after the release of our debut album, Curio. The songs were crafted and refined by the band over a few months of preproduction, rehearsals and live shows. The band members are Eli Booth (Bass), me (Guitar/Vocals), Grant Evans (Guitar/Vocals), Patrick Lanham (Drums/Percussion). I wrote nine of the 11 songs, while the other two were written and sung by Grant Evans. The oldest song on the album is a song titled “Bad Apple” which was written about 15 years ago and showcases the band’s grunge influence.
What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing? Why was it so troublesome?
The song “Leave Yourself Alone” had some unique challenges during the mixing phase due to how much was added. The choruses alone contain six vocal parts, multiple doubled guitar parts, drums, bass, piano, and tambourine. It’s like a wall of sound coming at you out of the speakers.
Which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?
The song “Head Up High” started out as a more solo acoustic song. While the original vibe of the song is intact on the recording, it was enhanced by adding three-part vocal harmonies, whale-like slide guitar swells, and a solid rhythm section. There are also water-like guitar sounds that ebb and flow throughout the track and create a very unusual and calming accompanying part.
Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?
Yes! We’ve honored to have CMA Veteran Jerry Hughes play on both Curio and Peril & Paracosm. Jerry plays organ, piano, and keyboard on the songs “Good Intentions”, “Leave Yourself Alone”, and “When the Time Comes”.
Who produced the record? What input did that person have that changed the face of the record?
The album was recorded at Babblefish Recording Studios and produced by Steve Falearos. Steve has a great ear for finding harmonies, and knowing when to subtract parts that might conflict or get in the way of other tracks. As a musician, he’s able to draw from his background to help push ideas in the right direction. Steve’s input on both of our album’s is evident and has helped make our music that much more accessible.
Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?
Peril & Paracosm is the title our new album. The title was selected after most of the album was recorded after taking a look at some of the over-arching themes that exist in the songs. We knew early on that this album was going to be darker than the first. Peril & Paracosm is not necessarily “heavier” than Curio, but from a lyrical and sonic perspective the songs are a bit more twisted. The album starts off with a song titled “The Afterlife”, which is a musically complex track with three key changes, a boatload of eerie screaming noises, and modal guitar riffs. The song tells the story of a recently-departed soul dealing with the confusion of what has just happened and unknown that lies ahead. “The Afterlife” was composed to capture the fear of what entering the afterlife might be like.
A similarly dark thread is woven through the rest of the songs as well. The song “Good Intentions” deals with the concept that despite or best intentions bad things are bound to happen. The song “Bad Appl” draws on imagery from folklore, mythology and fantasy to illustrate the tale of descent while the song If “You Only Knew” paints its own picture of demise with the lyric:
“It’s a sore subject sitting on the tip of your tongue,
it’s a scab wound splitting from the skin that it hung,
it’s the thought’s that I’ve been thinking, the object of desire,
like an iceberg sinking into the lake of fire”
The image of the iceberg sinking into the lake of fire really summed up the over-arching concept of the album. The idea of something as pure and beautiful as an iceberg being erased from existence is extremely powerful, and metaphorical. It really wasn’t meant to have any political reference to climate-change although people will obviously see that. This image became the album cover art which I painted and digitally airbrushed myself. The name Peril & Paracosm was applied as a shortened and more poetic title that described the themes of death and fantasy.
Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?
Yes! We’re getting great reactions from the new songs especially as we’ve composed most of the songs to weave into one another during our live show which makes for some really exciting unexpected moments that keeps everyone guessing.
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