What is the basic idea behind calling yourselves the
Children of the Apocalypse? Obviously this immediately
conjures a Biblical reference. Did you intend
this, or does the use of the word "Apocalypse" mean
something altogether different to you?
started doing music during the late 1980's in Los Angeles
area tunnels and caves... it felt very apocalyptic.
It fostered a feeling of leaving the city behind
and creating something new. Of course the name
did stem from an interest in mythology and other literature
such as the Bible. It was not intended to convey a "Biblical
Apocalypse," but rather an "Ecological Apocalypse."
When was the band
begun and what motivated you to create it?
band began around 1989 and was inspired by intense outdoor
and ritual experiences. It has been a vessel
for creating ritual trance states and combines an interest
in deep ecology. Through sound as a transmitter,
we set out to convey very intense and powerful experiences
recovered during excursions in the wild, mostly throughout
California's diverse ecosystems.
COTA's first recording, Ta'wil was released in 1997
. What does the title mean?
refers to taking something back to its source or to
its archetypal meaning. The title was an attempt
to convey and remember our connection to the land and
return to a balance with nature. In the album's
context, we intended it to provoke a feeling of returning
to the garden; living as a part of nature.
There seems to be a strong shamanistic interest running
through the composition of both your music and the liner
notes (for Ta'wil especially). Can you further
delineate this interest? Is COTA still involved
with organizations such as the Wildlands Project?
are interested in sound as a way to facilitate trance
states. Much of our pre-recorded experiments
involved creating soundscapes appropriate for ritual
work and meditation. We are interested in combining
certain elements such as percussion and organic tones
to help rekindle ancient collective memory. The
drums and percussion used in shamanic rites awaken primal
states of consciousness lost in the modern world.
We definitely identify more with tribal cultures and
the way they function socially. Our connection
is to land and its currents. As far as involvement
with groups and organizations, for the most part, we've
adopted a philosophy of non-affiliation. We definitely
are in step with some groups and ideologies, but currently
prefer to allow the music to speak on its own.
Speaking of your music, how would you best describe
like to describe it as music for a return to the garden
or a post-industrial way of life--where technology and
nature can reestablish their equilibrium. It's
purely an attempt to convey intense experiences both
harsh and beautiful.
Your latest recording, Marches and Meditations was released
in 2002 on the Tesco label out of Germany. How
did you hook up with this label?
were looking for a label with some integrity after the
"Ta'wil" release. We had a bunch of material
ready and started looking preferably outside the U.S.
American labels and sneaky major deals left a
toxic taste in our mouths. Markus Wolff of Waldteufel
and formerly of Crash Worship, suggested Tesco to us.
It seemed like a good match and we have been
happy with them and the quality of their work.
What instruments were used on this recording?
are experimenting with many different ways of constructing
sound with many pulses and rhythms. Some of these
were done with voice, and some of these were done with
textures, and some of these were done with drums. It
is a combination of organic and technological instrumentation
that attempts to convey the electrical and thunderous
impulses of earth. The instruments used on this
recording are: Conch Shell/ Analog Keyboards:
SH-1, Juno 60/ D-4/ Voice/ Percussion/ Samples/
and Zils. After "Ta'wil," we decided to launch
another project of "acoustic" music. Many people
thought electric guitar was used on many of the tracks
on "Ta'wil."- I only use acoustic guitar.
Are you working on
the next recording yet, and does COTA have any touring
plans for this year (2004) ?
we have a number of releases ready to go. We
already have a rough cut for the next COTA release,
but first we will re-issue "Ta'wil" in Europe this year.
Our label Sonick Sorcery is producing a compilation
due out in Spring 2004 entitled "Visions from the Garden."
The songs will draw inspiration from plant-derived
psycho-actives. We plan to debut The War of the
Sons of Light and the Sons of Darkness as well in 2004.
We've been writing this "acoustic" material for
years... it will combine vocals, acoustic guitar,
viola, percussion, with sparse electronics. Olga
Goija, a Violist from Latvia, will be recording on this
debut. Currently, we're focusing more on studio
work, but will play a few shows here and there.
We recently played a Summer Solstice show with Allerseelen,
Waldteufel, and Cthonic Force in San Francisco.