By Brayden Turenne
VANCOUVER – “Writing music is a cathartic and gratifying experience for me,” says Nick DiSalvo, guitarist and vocalist for Elder. “Being creative is the best way we can express ourselves in the world, and music is a beautiful tool that makes us feel alive. We play the music we do because we like it, and hopefully our listeners also feel moved.”
It could be argued that Elder’s latest full-length opus, Reflections of a Floating World – an expansive, riff-infused odyssey through alternate sonic dimensions, both heavy and stunningly beautiful – was one of the high points of music in 2017. The band has come a long way from having once reveled in the stylings of doom. They now offer something more ethereal and progressive, crafting epic length songs that are expansive and ever-changing.
“We got bored of the doom/stoner shtick,” says DiSalvo. “It became uninteresting to play the old songs, and we naturally started writing music that is a bit more ‘out there.’ We’ve always had pretty broad musical pallets and eventually more and more of those influences from outside the world of stoner rock started creeping in.”
This gradual evolution of Elder’s music has resulted in a colourful discography that reflects the natural course of time, but one thing that seems to have remained constant is where that inspiration comes from.
“I find it hard to separate any singular daily experience from our songwriting,” DiSalvo explains. “As a result, most of the lyrics on the past three albums have revolved around existential questions.” This gives further credence to the music, in its contemplative unfolding of undeniable grooves and riffs.
It seems like only recently that Elder visited to hypnotize the masses – their last North American tour was in October of last year, followed by a run through Europe. Now, Vancouver is the first stop on yet another North American tour.
“We absolutely love touring,” says DiSalvo plainly, despite the lifestyle not always being what it’s cracked up to be.
“Some people imagine touring is non-stop action, but it couldn’t be further from the truth,” he continues. “Most of each day is spent sitting in a van or backstage in a venue. But we also get a serious itch if we’re off the road for too long. You can get very caught up in your head if you’re only writing music for yourself and forget about the absolute joy of playing for a live audience. Not to mention we’re lucky to get to travel a lot, which is in itself inspiring.”
Elder play the Astoria (Vancouver) on August 10.Astoria, Elder, The Skinny