Scrap Yard Aces, a rock-reggae dub band from Huntington Beach, shares their success story with Top Shelf Music journalist Renee Simpson on their recently released album, Sense in This Time. Check out this intimate interview with the band!
Can you tell us about the creative process for the new album?
- We wrote most of the songs on this album as we were forming four years ago. Usually, one person comes in with the lyrics and the main musical ideas. Then, the whole band tightens up the arrangements. Once everything is on the table, we look at what we can cut out. We really try to leave open space for a bigger, fatter groove.
As a band, who would you say are your musical influences?
- Our musical influences would at least include The Clash, The Roots Radics Band, Joe Strummer & the Mesacaleros, Bad Brains, The Wailers, Dub Trio, Rancid and The Specials. Then there’s all the punk and heavier sounds we listen to. Our influences are diverse.
Tell us about the collaborations on the album.
- We recorded the album over 18 months with Shawn Taylor of The Simpkin Project at his studio, Hughes Drive Productions. We had the songs written and arranged beforehand, but Shawn really dug in to push our vocal harmonies. He added some layers of percussion and a Hammond organ that made the songs sound rich and huge. We also enlisted Sergio Sandoval (of Simpkin Project) for perfusion and Jah Connection Horns (Glenn Holdaway of Don Carlos/Josh Heinrichs), Warren Huang (of Tribal Seeds/Ozomatli) and Tony Rinaldi (of Iration) for the single “Mota”.
- We’d love to do a track with The Skints. They have such a killer mix of dub and heavy sounds.
Do you have any plans for music videos to follow?
- We’ll release a music video for the song “No Sense” shortly after the album drops.
*SYA FUN FACT: Steve has directed and edited all the band’s videos to date. OC Weekly’s Greg Nagel and photographer Geoff Kagy (who shoots Scrap Yard Aces’ live shows) handle the cinematography.
Wow! Sounds like a great plan to get the album shared with your listeners. Where do you measure success with reactions to your music?
- We already released two of the songs from Sense in this Time as singles and they have done really well. “Mota” has been featured on Spanish and European radios. We are getting online plays regularly across the US, Europe and Central and South America. It would be really great to play live for those audiences some day!
I knew from the first unreleased CD the band sent me that the fully mastered album would be a great success and well-received by listeners. You can find Scrap Yard Aces’ album Sense in This Time streaming on all digital platforms. Be sure to follow the band on Facebook and Instagram for future show updates and their soon-to-be released music videos!