Grammy-nominated band, HIGHLY SEDATED, recently released a new album SYMPHONY on SIZE Records today, June 28, 2019. The album was recorded live at The Palace of the Grand Dukes in Vilnius, with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra providing a full backing soundtrack.
It was conducted by Modestas Pitrenas and arranged by Liutauras Janusauitis. Symphony has come out as an astonishing, beautiful and beat-laden new album.
Marking this, we are in an exclusive conversation with the band members Patrick Ray, Hannes Söderlund, Leonas Somovas, and Verner Westlund.
Without much ado, let’s dive into the conversation.
Q1. HIGHLY SEDATED, as we know, is one fantastic electronica union of instrumentalists and singers. How did you meet to begin this band in the first place?
A. We met at a Swingers Club in Thessanoliki in 1989. It’s been dark and ugly ever since!
Q2. But why HIGHLY SEDATED? What’s the story behind the name?
A. It was the name of a club.
Q3. Do you follow a strict creative regime? Is there a creative process you go through before composing a music piece?
A. It’s different every time. Sometimes we go for a swim before we write a song, and sometimes we eat a kiwi or two. Seriously, there are of course four of us in the band, and so there are four streams of creative input that we have to harness into each track that we create. There’s no hard or fast way to do that, you just have to go with the creative flow. Sometimes it’s fast, sometimes it takes work and a grind to finish a single. But we get there every time, and the end results speak for themselves.
Q4. You just released a fabulous album, “SYMPHONY.” Enlighten us about it.
A. It’s an album we recorded live with the Lithuanian chamber orchestra at The Palace of the Grand Dukes in Vilnius in front of a live audience. It was so magical, something really special, not many bands get to record an album with a full-on orchestra in such an incredible location.
Q5. A combination of rock with classical, and electronic with analog, the LP builds and moves like a living creature. We’re sure that it is going to leave the audience highly sedated.
How was the experience of recording “Symphony” live at The Palace of the Grand Dukes with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra providing full backing soundtrack?
A. Nice, putting it into an album, nice. The best experience we’ve had as a band, by far. It’ll be something we all look back on as a highlight of our careers, and also something we hope translates to listeners as something really special and unique. Musically, it’s dynamite.
Q6. We noticed a pattern in your style of music production. How would you want to outline your style?
A. Our style is ‘electronic dance’ with great vocals. It’s something you should experience live! That’s how we approach it when we produce when we record. Of course it sounds amazing in your ears when you have your headphones on or you’re playing it in the car or at home but for us, it’s really in the live shows, in the performances when fans get the ‘truest’ representation of our sound, our music, what we’re about as a four-piece.
Q7. We read somewhere, quoting you, “…every track has its own story,” which one is your favorite?
A. Smoke Rings. That one is a masterpiece in itself. It’s a journey that we’re taking the audience to. Inspired by Hazy Nights and Nils Frahm. The final of the song is goosebumps all over it.
Q8. How was it working with SIZE Records so far?
A. It’s been great. They always let us explore our musical journey, which is a real privilege because a lot of labels or managers try to get you to ‘fit’ to their sound. We got given a creative carte blanche, and we definitely put it to good use!
Q9. A question, common to all four of you. What were your childhood aspirations? What did you want to be when you were younger?
A. Verner: I always wanted to be a fish. You know the one in the water. To swim in the ocean to feel free, like a mört.
Leonas: I always dreamt of being an angel. Still hoping. Hahaha. Soon.
Patrick: I always wanted to be a professional truck driver.
Hannes: I always wanted to be able to go backward.
Q10. If you could choose any artist (living or dead) to perform with, who would it be?
A. Living, please!
Q11. If given a chance to collaborate with another international band, which one would that be?
A. Run the Jewels, we’re massive fans of what they do and their sound. Give us a call!
Q12. Where can we find Patrick Ray, Hannes Söderlund, Leonas Somovas, and Verner Westlund when not producing music?
A. In Laholm.
Q13. A music festival is knocking on your door. Performing there would be a dream come true for you. Any word on which one?
A. Woodstock 1969.
Q14. Ten years from now, where do you aspire to see HIGHLY SEDATED?
A. Hopefully, we’re still alive! And, hopefully, none of us suffer a rectal dysfunction…
Q15. Music binds us all. How about passing a word of advice for aspiring bands in the making?
A. Don’t listen to influencers!
Well, that was one crazy interview with Highly Sedated, a personification of any audiophiles’ dreams come true. We hope you had fun reading what they had to say as much as we loved it!
The album, Symphony, will put the band of four, Highly Sedated, on the international music map. Additionally, the tracks are sure to be the chartbusters of 2019 playlists, globally.
For more such entertaining interviews with your favorite musicians keep hooked on to GrooveNexus.