Our latest musical heart-to-heart saw us link up with some boys from Down Under; Melbourne to be precise. Disconnected Genius are a three piece playing classic melodic rock with their own distinct lean. While bassist Yuri and drummer Daniel were either surfing, wrestling crocodiles or engaging in some other stereotypical Aussie pastime, we caught up with lead singer, Jamie O’Keefe.
Hey Jamie, we love the new release but we’ve not seen many titles like that since the days of Captain Beefheart. We’ve got to ask…how the hell did you come up with that one?
Our latest LP is called Nirvikalpa Meow; Nirvikalpa is the highest attainable state of enlightenment espoused by the ancient Vedic saints. Meow was my cat, who died. So it is the highest honour and tribute to her.
Wow, high praise to Meow. I never had the pleasure, but I’m sure she’d be made up by the album. We’re All Watching Everything has lodged itself in my head – are there any tracks on the album that stand out for you?
There’s quite a rigorous quarantine selection and vetting process before songs are even considered for one of our albums, so any song on a Disconnected Genius album is something we think is awesome. I suppose it’s a bit like being asked to choose your favourite child. They all have their thing, that’s why they’re there.
The Disconnected Genius journey has been relatively short so far, but what would you identify as the band’s greatest musical achievement to date?
Just recording two studio LP’s is the greatest achievement in my opinion but in terms of awards and chart placings we’ve had dozens of songs do really well in different Indie Radio Charts. We’re also proud of the fact a song of ours called Sadness is a Primary Color from our first record, Dogs Chasing Fairy Tales, was nominated for a Golden Kayak Award, which is an Indie Music People thing run by Scott Stambaugh.
From what we’ve heard, Disconnected Genius tick the boxes for both music and lyrics. What’s more important to you guys when you’re writing your songs?
Good question. Music, because that’s what makes it music, but it does pay to have good lyrics. I find it’s a bit like if you imagine the music to be a diamond, but you’ve got to sand the diamond down to get it into shape and in that sanding process suitable lyrics usually seem to appear. A good Rorschach test is to ask yourself: if there were no words, would it be a good song? And vice versa: if there was no music would the words stack up as poetry?
So give us some insight into the musicians who may have inspired you. What was the first album you bought and do you have any musical guilty pleasures?
The first album I bought was (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?. Still happy with that, got off on the right foot there. I was about nine or ten and listened to it all night and fell asleep with it still on, it was magical. In regard to musical guilty pleasures, I don’t think there’s such a thing. If it’s good and you like it, who and where it’s from matters not in the context of what’s seen to be “cool”. Take Nickelback for example. They made it big because they wrote one of the best songs of the last 50 years in How you Remind Me. Sure they’ve kept releasing the same song for the last 20 years but at least they’re famous for a reason.
But you know, music from Flashdance I love: What a Feeling and all that. Some of Kelly Clarksons stuff is pretty cool and I still pump Hanson’s MMM Bop, too.
So how do you see the future of your music? Any plans to mix things up in search of sonic evolution?
In our opinion, the evolution of style is not really a consciously motivated thing, it just happens naturally, but we’re working on our 3rd album as we speak. Already we’ve got some pumping tunes that we feel are raising the bar to a whole new level, so we’re unbelievably excited about it!
It’ll be time to celebrate once that’s all wrapped up! Out of interest, do Disconnected Genius have a bona fide party animal on board?!
That’s definitely Yuri! He’s been running this annual Christmas party for fourteen years. He’s practically the Australian Van Wilder!
If you’ve not checked out Disconnected Genius yet, take a look at the links below. They’re top guys, so take the time to follow them on social media, download the album and keep in touch for news about their fast approaching third LP.
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