Anjanette McGrath


premiere: liza colby sound’s ‘object to impossible destination’

July 17, 2019
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Over the past few years, Liza Colby Sound, led by the combustible Liza Colby, has earned a reputation as a can’t-miss live act. The group’s raw, unbridled take on hard rock might as well come with a can of PBR and a shot. It’s music built for dark clubs on hot nights that gets straight to the heart of what rock and roll ought to be: transgressive, raw, and raucous.

The group’s latest album, Object To Impossible Destination, is a tight eight-song set that rarely takes its foot off the gas. Nods to psychedelia and doom metal lurk in the corners, particularly on the expansive “Creep On,” but Liza Colby’s massive voice keeps everything in her orbit. Highlights like “Eye On You” and “Zero to Freakout” showcase some of the best hooks Colby has committed to tape, while giving her impressive band room to stretch their legs. We are honored to debut Liza Colby Sound’s Object To Impossible Destination, and to accompany the premiere, we asked Liza a few questions:

Your group has a serious reputation for your live act. What are the challenges of bottling the live energy for a recording? What’s fun about it?

Over the past two records, I have been trying to separate the live show from the recording so that they are their own experiences. The thought of “capturing what we do live” felt restricting. Defining the two separately allowed us to create two worlds that are equally exciting, and also different.

On Object To Impossible Destination we played with the soundscapes of each song layering the instruments and vocals and really playing around with effects. The live show is a classic stripped down kick you in the face four piece band. High energy. The fun part is having the two mediums to explore. The reward is exploring both spaces and sharing it.

What was the live performance you saw that changed your life?

Two actually: Taylor Mac’s “A 24 – Decade History of Popular Music” and I just saw The Fever333 at Download Festival in Madrid.

Your style of raw, stripped down rock and roll is having a bit of a moment right now. Why do you think that sound remains so vital?

Art is a reflection of the times, and technology has wildly influenced it. Through social media and the current climate of the music industry a lot of the music we are being fed is highly produced. Some may argue over produced.

The need for stripped down rock and roll maybe is it’s honesty. But what even is “stripped down”? What my band and I are doing would be considered wild at one point. Think about when Bob Dylan went electric. That being said, the space and setting when a band plays live with no pre-recorded tracks offers room for mistakes and magic to happen. Technology and social media are malleable. But, you cannot manufacture the communal experience of a show. And you can’t curate the feeling of being in the presence of raw emotion.

From The New York Dolls, The Ramones, down to The Strokes and more recent bands like The Skins, what is it about New York living that inspires that kind of rawness?

Shit, I am a little biased here, but New York City makes you work for it and that makes you tougher. You are forced to reckon consciously or subconsciously with the legacy of NYC’s history. All the big fish in all the small ponds came to this city to make it. The level of talent in every discipline surrounds you. That vibration is the rawness.

How do you hope your record will change the world?

There is an egomaniacal type of narcissism to thinking we could change the world with a record. We are just trying to connect with people, and push ourselves to dig deeper and find something new for the next one. Once you make a piece of art and put it out it’s not yours anymore. My band and I just made another music baby and we hope that we gave it enough love to thrive out there.

You can get Object To Impossible Destination here. And if you’re in New York, catch Liza Colby Sound on July 18th at Bowery Electric.