By Nicholas Jason Lopez
New Zealand-born, Toronto-based alt-rock brotherly trio Emperors Night recently released the official music video for “Not A Soul In Sight,” which you can find on their debut EP ‘Driving At Pace,’ also out now.
“Not A Soul In Sight” was written just as the COVID-19 lockdowns began this past Spring, as the group noticed the eeriness of suddenly empty streets in their adapted hometown of downtown Toronto. It musically captures retrospective 2020 realism, all while supplying hope for those who seek it.
Emperors Night are guitarist/producer Anand Chalmers, vocalist/pianist Bud Chalmers and vocalist/bassist Dhyan Chalmers.
The Music Bugle had the opportunity to chat with the brothers about “Not A Soul In Sight” and more.
Music Bugle – Away from music, what’s something that might surprise people about the band?
Bud Chalmers – I can hold my breath for over three minutes.
Anand Chalmers – Tom Cruise, watch out. Actually, no, Kate Winslet has the record now, I think.
Dhyan Chalmers – I bet Jack didn’t realize Rose had those kinds of powers or he would have gotten on the raft himself and pushed her off.
Bud Chalmers – Who’s Jack and Rose?
Dhyan Chalmers – Fact two – Bud has never seen “Titanic.”
Music Bugle – What was it like putting together your debut EP?
Anand Chalmers – It was mostly a straightforward process, actually. We had a lot of time on our hands and we have a small home recording set-up, which we took from Airbnb to Airbnb around Toronto during the course of the year.
Bud Chalmers – Maybe it was the fact that we had a lot of time together in close quarters, like some sort of intense team bonding camp, but when it came to creating and recording together, we found the whole process to be smooth and enjoyable and the songs came out in ways we were very pleased with.
Music Bugle – What made you want to put out videos for “Driving At Pace” and “Not A Soul In Sight”?
Bud Chalmers – It’s always a hard choice which tracks to highlight. However, these two seemed to connect with people a little more immediately – especially “Not A Soul In Sight,” which struck a chord with a number of people as relatable, considering everything going on in the world currently.
Music Bugle – Where do you feel most “at home”?
Dhyan Chalmers – Surfing on a clear day on a glassy ocean.
Bud Chalmers – Anywhere I have a guitar or a piano to play.
Anand Chalmers – Anywhere my wifi connects automatically.
Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?
Anand Chalmers – Spotify told me that this year, I listened to Haim the most. Must be something about bands with siblings?
Dhyan Chalmers – Totally. Ever since that Bee Gees documentary came out, they’re about all I’ve been listening to.
Music Bugle – How have you been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Dhyan Chalmers – Apart from the obvious ways – no playing live, etc., we haven’t been affected too much, luckily. Not in comparison to the kind of year many other people have had.
Bud Chalmers – It can be hard to see it in perspective sometimes, but all in all, we’ve been very lucky – and the fact we haven’t been able to play live motivated us to complete this EP, which has been very rewarding.
Music Bugle – Are you currently working on any new music?
Bud Chalmers – I just wrote a song on the acoustic guitar last week. Eventually, we might get around to recording it with a full arrangement. It’s a song about franchises and franchisees.
Anand Chalmers – Interesting subject matter…
Dhyan Chalmers – We’ve been focusing on making the music videos for the two singles from the release up until now, but I think once the new year hits, we’ll definitely be back in the studio. We’ve got a number of songs to choose from to what we record next.
Music Bugle – What do you wish for in 2021?
Bud Chalmers – Season 5 of “Rick And Morty.”
Dhyan Chalmers – For Emperors Night to release a full-length album.
Anand Chalmers – A calm and stable year for the world – and season 5 of “Rick And Morty.”
Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do?
Anand Chalmers – This is not a quote I can reproduce verbatim, or at least do justice to myself, so if you don’t mind, tell your readers to watch this.
Music Bugle – Which of the songs on ‘Driving At Pace’ were the hardest to write?
Dhyan Chalmers – I think “Pink Taffeta” went through the most versions during the recording process. We came up with the opening beat/bass/guitar combination pretty quickly, but then sorting out what came next took a bit longer.
Anand Chalmers – We even had a furious rock beat and driven distorted guitar version of it that we were playing around with at one point. That was fun. Maybe we’ll release it on the remastered and expanded version of the ‘Driving At Pace’ EP in 30 years.