“I don’t think people really catch on to a lot of the humor that we put into it because we’re not adding it for the purpose of people knowing,” says guitarist Shane Patience.
Shane explains what the four twenty-something-year-olds find so tongue-and-cheek in their music.
“The best way that I can describe it is if you’re listening to a song and it just totally takes a turn to a really obnoxious part out of nowhere that’s awesome but you just know listening to it that part didn’t need to be in that song but I’m so glad it was.”
Singer and guitarist Zach Allard adds that the funny parts in their music are over-the-top.
“There’s parts in our songs that are purposefully super pop or super catchy or heavy for the sake of being stupidly heavy.”
The guys have the inflated poppy, heavy, and catchy parts in their music because it reflects their personalities and their outlook on music, says Shane, who today made up the term “post-math punk” to describe their music.
“I think it kind of stems from, when we listen to stuff, we always make fun of it, especially if we like it. The more we like something, the more we laugh about it. We all listen to hardcore. We all love hardcore and then we just make fun of it all the time,” adds Zach, who just finished rendering the three songs from [sp]arrows, their second EP.
With lyrics like “our love’s divine” in Streaming, the third song on [sp]arrows, it might be hard for some listeners to think of Viridians as tongue-and-cheek. Shane worries that Viridians gives off the impression that they’re serious and says the band has even met to talk about how they need to lighten up.
“We’re just a bunch of stupid goofy guys and sometimes our music sounds pretty serious,” says Shane.
For listeners who can’t hear the tongue-and-cheek in their music, Zach recommends listening to it when you’re ready to have a good time.
“I feel like if you go into listening to it really open-minded and ready to laugh and have a good time then it really caters to that—that’s what we try to access and you can see it also in people in the crowd. You can see when people get it and are on the same wavelength,” he says.
“I think humor is an emotion that’s not often found in music”
- Zach Allard, singer and guitarist for Viridians.
So if you’re in the right state of mind, you might find the clean tele breakdown at the end of The Architect, from their first EP, funny.
“That part just doesn’t need to be there, but we decided to add it in because we thought it was funny,” says Shane.
And if you’re ready to have a good time, you might also find the poppy part (around 2:50) of The Wake, from their new EP, funny.
The tongue-and-cheek parts in the band’s music draw similarities between their first and second EPs, but Zach and Shane say the two EPs are starkly different.
Viridians recorded [sp]arrows, released April 20, over four days at Zach’s cabin live-off-the-floor except for the vocals.
“We all wanted more of a raw, live-off-the-floor kind of sound to this EP and we were all on the same page that we didn’t want to record it like we recorded the last one,” says Shane. The instruments and vocals were recorded separately on Against Dangerous Visions, their first EP.
“It didn’t have the intensity in some parts that it should have that comes naturally when you’re in a room playing with the band. If you’re playing to a track by yourself it’s not the same,” says Shane about their first EP.
“We wanted it be more representative of what we do live so this album also doesn’t have any overdubs,” adds Zach, who considers Viridians emo.
[sp]arrows also represents the true sound of Viridians, says Shane.
“For me it sounds more refined, like our sound. The first album to me always sounded like we were trying to figure out what we wanted to sound like and then I think once we had done that, [sp]arrows became a little bit more natural.”
[sp]arrows also sounds a lot different because of how it was written: Zach says the songs from their new album were composed with vocals in mind; the songs on Against Dangerous Visions were composed instrumentally then vocals were layered on top, and this time Shane was part of the writing process.
“When I started playing with those guys, a lot of the songs off the first album were already written or mostly written,” says Shane.
Shane joined Viridians two years ago, after singer and drummer Joe Peloquin-Hopfner, bassist Neil Exell, and Zach quit playing instrumental music under the moniker Amuse.
Shane wrote most of the song ideas and all his guitar parts for [sp]arrows, a lot of them when he was in Ottawa last summer.
“Shane only writes music if he’s broken up with his girlfriend or if they just get back together,” they laugh. Zach adds, “any time it’s going well it’s just kind of a dry spell.”
[sp]arrows hasn’t taken a year to create because of Shane’s functional relationship but because the band has been mixing and mastering the EP themselves in between work and school without strict deadlines.
Although Zach and Shane agree that being able to have full control over [sp]arrows has given them sonic freedom, the year that it has taken Viridians to record, mix, and master the EP has been dragging on and they’re happy to have finally finished it.
“That’s a flip side to being able to mix and master your own album. It can tend to linger because there’s no pressure to have it done,” says Shane.
Viridians plans to release a full album in the future but for now, Zach and Shane say they’re happy with releasing EPs to give fans an update on the band’s sound while the band quickly evolves.
Check out Viridians here.