Music Bugle Exclusive – Q & A – Zilched

Artwork for ‘DOOMPOP.’ Courtesy of Girlie Action Media.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez

Zilched – the musical project of Detroit-based noise-pop singer-songwriter Chloë Drallos – recently dropped her debut album ‘DOOMPOP’ via Young Heavy Souls, chockfull of grungy tunes specifically inspired by Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ and The Jesus And Mary Chain’s ‘Psychocandy.’

Supported by singles “Sixteen,” “Sleeper,” “The Morning,” “Blue Doom” and “Velcro Dog,” the album chronicles Drallo’s journey to adulthood and the effect it has on one’s mental health.

The Music Bugle had the opportunity to talk with her about ‘DOOMPOP’ and more.

Music Bugle – What inspired you to write “Sixteen” and what was it like making the video? 

Zilched – “Sixteen” felt like a collage of questions I had on memories as they were resurfacing, which led to asking the question back of “Is this what you mean” in response to some dumbing down or “You know what I mean”s on that whole teen girl archetype. Sonically, it was all – for lack of a better word – gut-driven. For the music video, I wanted to pay homage to the whole rock thing and again, further play with those archetypes…

Music Bugle – What was it like putting together ‘DOOMPOP’? 

Zilched – It was a pretty slow and natural progression. Three songs in was when I was sure this was a record and had an idea of what I needed to say. Working with engineer Ben Collins too gave it a patient “anything is possible” energy and kept things very personal.

Music Bugle – How would you describe Detroit to someone who has never been there before? 

Zilched – Depending on the season, it can feel a bit like Gotham through a 70’s time-warp. 

Music Bugle – What excites you the most about noise-pop? 

Zilched – (Laughs) I think there’s just something casually subversive and enjoyable about it. I love a good dichotomy…

Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise? 

Zilched – Earlier this year, I got a hold of Blissed Out Fatalists’ self-titled record and have been spinning that lots again lately. It’s pretty fucked up and perfect, in my opinion. As for new stuff, I’ve been really loving the new Seth Bogart record. He’s got a cover of X Ray Specs’ “Oh Bondage Up Yours!” that goes pretty hard.

Music Bugle – Which of your songs was the hardest to write or compose? 

Zilched – Lyrically, “The Morning” was my biggest learning experience as a writer and set up the tone of everything that followed for sure. As for composition, “Velcro Dog” took the most forms, starting out as a much washier simple shoegaze jam before the punchy version you hear on the record.

Music Bugle – What’s the overall “message” you hope to send to your listeners with your music? 

Zilched – I guess I just want people to feel my sincerity and to hopefully relate or just have a good time listening.

Music Bugle – How have you been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic? 

Zilched – It’s definitely taken the biggest toll on my mental health, but being that all my closest friends are roommates between just a few houses, it’s been manageable. I’m aware that I’m lucky. Had this happened a year ago, it’d be a different story.

Music Bugle – Where do you go when you feel the need to escape? 

Zilched – My room, a drive, or the cinema.

Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do?

Zilched – “I define nothing. Not beauty, not patriotism. I take each thing as it is, without prior rules about what it should be,” by Bob Dylan.

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