Review Fix chats with Jane in Space’s frontman Tom Vickers, who discusses the band’s origin, goals and creative process behind their new single, “Gorerunner.”
Review Fix: How did the band get together?
Tom Vickers: Jesse and I had played together in a couple of bands previously. “Jane In Space” was born when Jesse began remixing songs by one of those bands, an indie-rock group called Jenny Haniver.
Review Fix: How did you get involved in music?
Vickers: I’ve been a singer for a lot of my life, and I also play a bit of guitar (but very primitively). Jesse and I have in common that we’re both music geeks, but Jesse is also a tech geek, which means he has so much different equipment to make music with!
Review Fix: What’s your creative process like?
Vickers: For the majority of the songs, Jesse writes the music and then I will write the melodies and lyrics. Usually Jesse’s pieces of music start out as very basic sketches and not at all set in stone. I will come over and listen to the music and generally warble some basic melody that instinctively comes from the sketch. Then we help pull and push each other in different directions both musically and melodically. Sometimes the song will sound nothing like the original sketch.
On our newest record, “Gorerunner,” we also had the insane privilege of working with Keith Hillebrandt, a legendary “sonic alchemist” who worked on Nine Inch Nails’ masterpiece, “The Fragile.” After we pushed the songs as far as we thought we could take them, Keith came in and sprinkled his distorted pixie dust on them, which pushed them to places we didn’t know they could go.
Review Fix: What inspires you?
Vickers: Trying to make music that is not easily put into a genre, or that transcends genres. We have been described as “techno” all the way to “metal”. One of my favorite bands Enter Shikari very much inspire me in the way that there are tracks of theirs that change genre halfway through the track yet it still really works. The incredible “Gandhi, Mate, Gandhi” being a prime example.
Review Fix: Why is your latest release a special track?
Vickers: The latest single, “Gorerunner,” is the title track of the new record and, I think, its quintessential song. The song is both hushed and utterly in-your-face, emotional yet also somewhat restrained. It is my favorite song on the new record.
Review Fix: How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?
Vickers: We would say, “The dark industrial beats of Nine Inch Nails with the pop sensibility of Depeche Mode.” But we’ve also heard some more creative descriptions–”industrial Beck,” “somewhere Radiohead might have ventured if they let loose once in a while,” or–a favorite–“sounds like the dinosaurs seducing each other than then killing each other.”
But some of the more creative things we’ve heard: “industrial Beck,”
Review Fix: How are your live shows different from your studio work?
Vickers: Jesse is very much into the struggle between the robotic musical world and the live one. We play live with a drummer (Brian Korpalski) with a background in metal, a guitarist with more of a classic rock feel (Andrew Tell), and an amazing, funky bassist (Josh Stillman)–so we can’t help but push the songs in a way heavier, groovier direction than the records. Often the songs change completely, but we also keep the core of the backing track playing though so that the live components are fighting with the more robotic industrial elements. The results are far more interesting than if we wholly embraced either electronica or being a “rock band.”
Review Fix: What are your goals for the rest of 2018?
Vickers: We are hopefully going to release some new songs before the year is out, and also play some more shows around the New York area.