Interview With Paranova’s Bassist Erin Sperduti

XS ROCK:  Tell me about the latest band news? Any new projects coming out, live shows or announcements?
Erin:   We just released our first full-length album, titled “Hyperhollow.” We also just finished up with a tour in support of it! The next show we are playing is September 12th at the Rebel Lounge with The Ongoing Concept and Eidola, and we have some big changes in store for our live set!

XS ROCK: How long has the band been together?
Erin:  About 2 and a half years now.

XS ROCK: What was your main motivation for starting or being in a band?
Erin:  When Logan, Dylan and I met at the School of Rock music program, we set the goal that still stands to this day — to write the best music we can all while becoming the best musicians possible. All of our motivation for being in this band revolves around the quality of music and musicianship that we create together.

XS ROCK: Which do you prefer? Writing new songs and recording or playing for a live audience?
Erin:  We love a balance of the two, and each of us likely has different opinions on this… But I would say that writing new material is our favorite part. There’s something about spending late nights together coming up with new ideas and concepts that makes us all excited. In addition, we get to push ourselves as individual musicians to come up with the best parts we can, in ways that still complement the other members’ parts. Creating is a really invigorating thing.

XS ROCK: Do you have any outrageous tour stories from the road?
Erin: On this last tour, we almost got ran into by a cop! It was a two lane highway, one lane going either direction, and a cop came around a curve, with his sirens on, halfway in our lane. We almost got nailed head-on by him, but luckily the person driving was able to swerve to avoid it. We couldn’t exactly call the cops on a cop, however.

XS ROCK: What’s the strangest request that you’ve ever received from one of your fans?
Erin: We haven’t gotten any strange requests yet. That’s a challenge to everyone reading this. Ask us something weird.

XS ROCK: Were your parents supportive of your aspirations to play in a rock band?
Erin: Absolutely. We are very lucky to have such supportive parents, both mentally and financially, and at times emotionally! They have been on the band train since day one.

XS ROCK: What are your favorite tracks to play live?
Erin: Our favorite song to play life is Echelon, the 7th track on Hyperhollow. It’s so long, and has so much dynamic variety… We rarely get to play it, but when we do, it’s our favorite one!

XS ROCK: Which band or artist inspired you to perform? Why?
Erin: As far as the live performance goes, we are all inspired by the band Nothing More. Their live show is so intense and amazing that we are constantly driven to become better live musicians because of them. We’ve each seen them in concert about 7 times!

XS ROCK: If you could design a dream tour for your band, who would be on the bill?
Erin: Oh, man. A Perfect Circle, Deftones, The Mars Volta, Chevelle, Karnivool, Nothing More… I think I’m getting ahead of myself at this point!

XS ROCK: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment so far?
Erin: As cliché as it may sound, it would be writing, recording, and releasing Hyperhollow. Writing an album is such an intense process that you often forget to sit back and appreciate the outcome of all the work put into it. When we listened back to all the final cuts/masters, there were certain moments where we looked at each other kind of in shock that we were capable of writing the kind of music that we thoroughly enjoy listening to. Writing this whole album has been the highest point of being a band thus far, as we have discovered talents and abilities that previously seemed impossible.

XS ROCK: If you weren’t performing in a band what kind of career do you think you would have?
Erin: If I weren’t in a band, I would have probably chosen to study something like Biomedical Engineering, which requires a time commitment of pretty much every waking moment. Logan (drummer) and I are pursuing business degrees in college right now, which is far more easy to supplement with music than a topic like engineering.

XS ROCK: What type of equipment do you use for live shows?
Erin: We are all gear nerds! I’ll start with Dylan, our guitarist. He plays a beautiful Skervesen Raptor guitar, and recently bought a Victory Kraken amp. He uses six pedals that are crucial to the sound, some of which include the Caroline Guitar Company Meteore pedal and a Boss DD-500 Delay. Logan, our drummer, plays Pearl Drums, Sabian Cymbals, Vater sticks, and Remo Heads. As for myself, I play either a Mayones Jabba 4 custom bass through an Ampeg SVT-CL head, with my main throaty/crunchy tone coming from my beloved Darkglass B7K preamp. I’m not sure how I survived before that pedal.

XS ROCK: What do you think of the current music scene?
Erin: The cool thing about the current music scene is that it is much easier than it ever has been to start a band and gain a local following. In that sense, everyone starts out on an even playing field, which allows for an endless, free-flowing supply of music. The only problem we see on a regular basis is the abundance of conceit, or egos, if you will. You can become successful as a musician without thinking you are better than the rest, and there is no use in tearing other people down to build yourself up. In an ideal scene, every band would be supportive of each other instead of pointlessly competitive.

XS ROCK: For anyone that doesn’t know you, what would they be surprised to know about you?
Erin: Our singer accidentally found us through Craigslist! He was one of those junk-removing hunks when he first moved out here from Minnesota, and was looking for junk removal jobs on Craigslist. We accidentally posted a “seeking singer” ad in the jobs section on the website. He clicked on it and saw that our music taste was almost identical to his, contacted us, and the rest is history!

XS ROCK: If someone had never heard you before, how would you describe your sound?
Erin: We just say that we are an Alternative Rock band, to keep it broad. We explore a lot of different genres as well, like metal and jazz, but keeping it general has always been our approach. We want people to get curious enough to listen to the music instead of putting our sound into a box.

XS ROCK: Is there anything that you’d like to promote or say to your fans out there?
Erin: All I want to say is that it would mean the world if everyone could listen to the album! We spent so much time on it and we think that there’s something in there for everybody. Fun fact: our favorite tracks are the last three songs on the album! Thanks for reading this. If you made it to the bottom, you’re either one of our family members or a really cool person.

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