Progressive metallers from San Jose in California, Utopian Trap have returned this year after a six-year hiatus with the release of their second album The Human Price. With a few line up changes since 2010 and release of the debut Fiction Fades into Reality, Utopian Trap in 2010 is a band that seems to be ready to answer the challenge of composing music within the progressive metal genre and beyond.
Alright, first thing is first. Before we dive into all the music stuff, how’s life?
Thanks for the interview. We are doing great and the band is all excited with the album release.
Speaking of new music, you have an album. What can people expect from The Human Price?
Chandra : Just like its predecessor, this album has a lot of catchy guitar riffs, powerful vocals, anthemic sections mixed in with acoustic and psychedelic arrangements. The album also features some really talented musician friends of the band. You can hear jazz, acoustic and psychedelic influences in “Atephobic” and “Devil’s Promenade”. It’s a prog metal album, so to be on the safe side, expect the unexpected. Haha.
What was it like working on the album?
Chandra : It was quite an experience! While the vision and final goals were quite clear and consistent, the band went through different phases due to changes in the line-up. Since our debut CD was released, we have gone through 3 singers, 2 drummers and many auditions. After Eric and Rohil joined us, we were back on track. The song writing process was quite similar to the first album. The main theme for the album was thought out a while back and our CD artist, Rodrigo Larreteguy delivered a killer CD cover art before we even started to record the album. For mixing and mastering, we went with Refractor Studios in Pune, India. Adhiraj Singh did a phenomenal job on these mixes.
Rohil: I joined in on the new album, The Human Price. After hearing the band’s demos for this album, I was excited to have finally found a progressive band that sounds like older metal/progressive bands as well as new ones–I always looked forward to coming to into the studio to write my parts as well as jam with the band.
Are there any touring plans in support to The Human Price?
Yes, we are planning some gigs around here in support of the new album.
While we are on the subject of touring, what countries would you love to tour?
It would be awesome to play for metalheads in European cities and India. Hopefully someday. Wacken!!!
Who and what inspires you the most?
Rohil: The drummers who have the biggest influence on my drumming are Mike Mangini, Thomas Lang, Dave Weckl, Tony Royster Jr., Danny Carey, and Luke Holland. Apart from giving me good insight on drumming styles and techniques, their positive attitude surrounding music composition and music as a lifestyle is very motivating.
Chandra : It’s mainly the guitar heroes, who inspired me from early on. Here are some of them (in chronological order) : David Gilmour, Slash, James Hetfield, Randy Rhoads, Joe Satriani, John Petrucci, Jasun Tipton
What other genres of music do you listen to? Have any of the other genres you listen to had any impact on your playing?
Rohil: A majority of my drum parts and techniques come from a wide scope of styles including progressive metal, jazz, nu-metal, and electronic/trap music, with all genres placing an emphasis on drum beats and signature changes/transitions. This adds a sense of variety to each composition and gives us different outlooks on specific riffs/tunes.
Chandra : Yes, thanks to the SF bay area traffic, I get to listen to a lot of stuff including classical, blues, jazz instrumentals. These genres surely impact our songwriting and playing. Farhan (our bassist) is really into classical/jazz. He introduced me to the music of jazz greats like Duke Ellington and Django Reinhardt, You will probably never see Farhan at a metal show, unless Utopian Trap is playing. But you’ll most likely run into him at a Holdsworth show. Listen to “Atephobic” and “Devil’s Promenade” and you’ll know what I am talking about.
I really appreciate you giving us your time today. Is there anything else you would like to tell us and the fans before we wrap things up?
Thank you Moshville for the interview. Thanks to all our fans and friends for your support and for keeping metal and progressive metal music alive ! We would surely like to hear from you, so please don’t hesitate to drop us a line by email (moc.l1485160104iamg@1485160104partn1485160104aipot1485160104u1485160104) or on facebook.com/utopiantrap .. You can check out the newly released album and the first album on iTunes, Spotify, Rhapsody/Napster, Google Music, bandcamp, Slacker Radio etc etc. For physical CDs, please visit our website : utopiantrap.com