Polish art/prog rock band Maze of Sound are gearing for a mini tour in January on which they will be promoting their 2014’s record Sunray. The band has in plan to release a new album in 2016, and about this all we talked with singer Jakub Olejnik.
What’s Maze of Sound up to these days? Are you guys working on any new material?
Hi! We are happy to talk to Moshville! Yes, we are working on our new material for the second album. Two new singles will be soon released by Downtown Artists label in London, England in PlaySoho Studios (Ex-Berwick Studio where David Bowie, Depeche Mode, Ringo Starr, Sex Pistols, Chemical Brothers and Bjork had recorded before! Downtown Artists is our non-exclusive management (like Prog Sphere Promotions), so we hope to play more concerts abroad. On the second album, we would like to present our new material characteristic for our sound and style. We are trying to make this sound and style original and unique for Maze Of Sound. However, we want our second album to be different from the first one. A lot of new music is already composed; currently, we are working on arrangement and lyrics. This work give us a lot of pleasure and excitement and we are looking forward to release our two new singles in London.
When can we expect a new Maze of Sound album?
We hope that our second album will be released in 2016.
Are you satisfied with how your debut album Sunray turned out and with its reception?
Yes, we are. Sunray’s reception is and was very good. Its worldwide reviews are really positive! They come from many countries, mostly Poland, Germany and The Netherlands, but also France, Italy, Russia, Brazil or Japan. Still, new reviews appear. We are happy that our album is so appreciated around the world and sometimes it is even described as similar to Marillion and Genesis music! Moreover, our two pieces taken from Sunray got great additional promotion worldwide; ‘Man in the balloon’ appeared on International Charity Compilation CD called ‘Voices for Hospices’ among many great bands and artists, like Steve Hackett (Genesis) and Pete Trewavas (Marillion). It also appeared on CD Compilation in popular german magazine ‘Empire’ among such artists like Strawbs or Riverside. Our ‘Reflection’ piece is promoted by english Deuce Music agency that often presents it on over 30 radio stations worldwide. It is also great that we got a lot of very good opinions from our fans and friends who had and listened to our album. We think Sunray is a first step for Maze Of Sound. Now, we are going to take a second one.
What are themes you explore in your lyrics?
In our lyrics, we try to connect two worlds: real and surreal. There are a lot of strange and unusual characters in our lyrics and songs. Some of them are positive, the others negative. A listener becomes the main character of Sunray and he must face all these weird adventures and decide what to do, who listen to and which way to go. He flies a balloon over the dangerous city, admires the power of Rain Charmer, meets the unpredictable Mad Hatter, finds himself in a big desert without water, gets lost in the cold and dark forest or crosses the mirror… In general, we would like to take a listener for the mysterious trip where reality and seriousness collide with fantasy and grotesque.
You’ll embark soon on European tour. Are you excited about it?
Oh, yes, we are. This is going to be our first European tour, so we are very excited about it. Before, we played concerts mostly in Poland, but also in Germany (International Rock Show, Garage Delux club, Munich) and Lithuania (Tevo Gitara Festival) with our friends from The Skys band. Now, due to Progsphere Promotions, we will play 5 concerts in January 2016: 13th January in Tartaros, Banska Bystrica, Slovakia; 14th January in Reigen, Vienna, Austria; 15th January in S8, Budapest, Hungary; 16th January in Clash Club, Subotica, Serbia and 17th January in Hard Club, Karvina, Czech Republic. In October 2016, we will also play at Lancaster Festival, England. We are looking forward to start our January European tour and we hope that more people will hear about Maze Of Sound, soon.
How does a Maze of Sound gig look? What can audiences expect from your performance?
We pay a lot of attention to our live gigs. Maze Of Sound try to show so-called ‘rock theatre’ on stage. We want to present rock music using theatrical elements and special behaviour on stage; mainly vocalist tries to materialize particular characters of our music stories. He becomes the tricky Mad Hatter or a tourist going through a jungle full of dangerous animals or then, he appears in the mirror as an evil reflection. On stage, we use different gadgets, masks or clothes in order to make our performance unique. Some of our music pieces are dynamic and some of them are softer, so the energy and atmosphere change during our concerts. We think that we never played two the same gigs as we often have some new ideas concerning our shows and usually try to be spontaneous. We encourage you to come and visit us at our gigs!
How do you see the prog scene in your country? Do you think that the music you make reach out to the right people?
The prog scene in Poland looks pretty good, however it could be better. It is not a mainstream. I think that it is bigger and bigger every year. There are many good progrock bands in Poland. There are also more festivals and clubs with progrock music. Our band is quite new, so we still try hard to play more, promote our album and reach out to the right people. For four years, we have met some really great people in Poland who supported us a lot. Especially, Krzysiek ‘Jester’ Baran and Michal Karkusinski are guys who managed many progrock events in our country and invited us to play at many of them. The most popular we played at were Progressive Rock Festival in Gniewkowo 2014 and Prog The Night Festival in Lodz 2015.
What do you guys do in your every-day lives?
Playing in Maze Of Sound is a great passion for us and we hope that soon it will also be our main job and profession. However, everyone of us has got other job. Piotr Majewski (leader, composer and keyboardist) is a professional classical musician and violinist in polish orchestra, Arek Pokorski (guitarist) is a professional session guitarist, Grzegorz Sliwka (drummer) is an electrician and Jakub Olejnik (vocalist) is a teacher of english.
Any words of wisdom?
We are doing our best to present our music worldwide. I think we are on the right way to do so. We would like to give people ‘light’, show the right path to follow and to entertain them with our music and ‘rock theatre’ on stage.
Thank you and all the best for Moshville!