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Disastroid (Garden Creatures)

Released: 2024

Genre: Hard rock, Grunge,

Sounds Like: Melvins, Gruntruck, Paw

Homeland: San Francisco, California

Disastrous - Garden Creatu

What makes Garden Creatures elite and sit atop OHMs Peak?

  • Disastroid's latest graces our speakers with an unusual blend of heavy rock and raw grunge

  • Garden Creatures takes us back to the early 90s when bands like Jesus Lizard, Paw and Gruntruck were on the scene. While Disastroid may have these influences, they provide their own brand of refreshing off-beat heaviness

  • Musically, Garden Creatures is masterful. Check out the bass work from Travis on 'Hold Me Wrong,' it is so fucking absorbing

  • The vocals from Enver possess a raw energy that complements the music perfectly

  • The last track 'Jack Londonin'' throws some punk fury into the mix, what a brilliant way to end an album

 

Track Listing:

1. Garden Creatures 5:57

2. Stucco Nowhere 5:07

3. Figurative Object 6:56

4. Backwards Sleeping 4:10

5. 24 5:36

6. Hold Me Wrong 4:32

7. Light 'Em Up 6:19

8. Jack Londonin' 2:03

 

Dive deeper into Garden Creatures with our Q&A with Enver and Travis from Disastroid.


OHMs Peak: Your sound evokes a harkening back to the early 90s for us. A comforting time where vocals were unfettered and energy, pure, and raw. Where did you get your inspiration for Garden Creatures and who would you say are your biggest influences?


Enver: I always loved the 90’s for that reason and made a point to lean into the vocals more on this album.  If I grabbed one influential band in this era that encompasses this approach I would say Soundgarden. Beyond their big hits, they had a lot of variety of songs and sounds – and of course unreal singing.


Travis: It’s funny how your influences just kind of emerge whether you want them to or not! I’m not sure there was ever a deliberate decision to say, “hey, let’s sound like a band from the 90s!” but we all have a deep love for many of the bands of that era, so when we write and play together I guess some of that just comes out naturally. I think all three of us gravitate towards the noisier, more experimental 90s bands like Melvins, Drive Like Jehu, Unsane, Jesus Lizard. And that carries through in our listening today, we like heavy bands that are unconventional in terms of songwriting, or are exploring unusual sounds and tones. Braden and I also both have a deep love of prog and experimental metal, and we're always trying to play really complicated stuff (Voivod is one of my all-time favorite bands), so between the three of us a lot of strange time signatures often show up in Disastroid songs.



OHMs Peak: You guys have such tight chemistry and your sound keeps evolving while you stick to your signature heavy style. Can you provide a glimpse into the band's creative process?


Enver: I’ll bring in some riffs or part of a song and we all collaborate on it and try it a million different ways until it becomes something we like. On this particular album we tried to focus on the best riff and trim a lot of the extra. Some of these riffs have hung around the space for years before we were finally able to make something of them.


Travis: Enver is a riff machine, he’s constantly generating great guitar parts on the spot while the rhythm section follows along, so most of the hard work is trying to shape the raw ideas into fully finished songs. We have a backlog of recordings from our practice space of all these riffs and textures that we haven't used yet, so raw material has never been a limiting factor! I think we’ve become better at polishing, and that's the tougher part – refining a song’s structure, trimming the fat, and adding all the little details. Eventually we’ll pull out the whiteboard and sketch out the song with weird little symbols and letters, so we have a map. We also have a habit of adding small complications to different parts, to keep things interesting and keep the listener off-balance a bit; like adding an extra unexpected note, dropping a beat or two in certain phrases, or shifting a riff to an odd meter. Some of those little details get added late in the process. The very last thing is usually locking down the vocals and harmonies... Enver is an amazing improvisational singer and he experiments with different melodic shapes and different lyrics for a long time, right up until we finally set it in stone for the actual recording.


OHMs Peak: 'Figurative Object’ has such a dark story to tell we would love to hear more about the meaning and background behind this track.


Enver: Ultimately it’s about a man who is in love with a mannequin, or his perfect idea of one, and he puts one together from different scavenged parts. But he’s also haunted by his own obsession. It’s meant to be a reflection of a deeper, unhealthy lurking obsession society has with bodies and the perfect match.


OHMs Peak: ‘Backwards Sleeping’ features an onslaught of blissful tempos and unique angles. We get the feeling this track may have close ties to your everyday lives we would love to hear more about its meaning and influence?


Enver: The endless churning of monotony and daily anxiety! Brought to you in a lovely little number about the futility of sleeping when you just toss and turn all night. I wish I could say it was about putting your feet on the pillow and your head under the sheets.


Travis: I’m really glad that Enver doesn’t write songs with conventional, cliche rock-and-roll lyrics. It’s all existential dread. So much more fun!


OHMs Peak: The album cover is so unique, like nothing we have seen. Would love to get more insight behind the creation?


Travis: I’m usually responsible for the art that goes on our albums, and over the years I’ve done a lot of show posters and t-shirt designs and whatnot too. I work entirely digitally but I love trying to give things sort of a screenprinted look so I keep it as graphic as possible and limit my color palette, try to think about it as if I was actually overprinting inks. I often create collages of various things, but in this case the album cover is just an illustration. For the subject matter I usually try to avoid being overly literal, and rather create some kind of an image that feels like it vibes with the album title, or one of the song titles. With “Garden Creatures” – for whatever reason – my brain went to the image of eyes growing on plants, like the plants in your yard are watching you.


OHMs Peak: Disastroid is stranded on an island with only a solar powered record player. The entire band must agree to only 1 album to have during your stay… what album is it?


Enver: I would choose Mahavishnu Orchestra “Inner Mounting Flame.” We might all be able to agree on McGruff the Crime Dog’s “Smart Kids” album.


Travis: Mahavishnu Orchestra rules! We all tend to put on slightly different things in the van, but we all vibe with each other’s choices, which has been great for long drives. Braden usually goes for some obscure old prog album, or possibly some yacht rock if we’re really lucky. I’m usually putting on a newer stoner metal album by Red Fang or Anciients or something like that, or some soothing tropicalia. If we could only bring a single record to the island? I don’t know if we’d ever be able to decide… but I wouldn’t be surprised if it ended up being a thrash metal classic, maybe Slayer or Anthrax. I guess I haven’t actually answered the question but I’m not sure there’s any single record we could listen to indefinitely (unless we were blasting it really loud to try and get help from passing ships.)


 

Disastroid are:

Enver Koneya Vocals - Guitar

Travis Williams Bass - Guitar

Braden McGraw - Drums



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