Final Body Interview by Tzina Dovve (DJ Lady Davinia)
Final Body… A new post-punk/old-school goth act from Seattle, Washington… Newcomers on the scene give a deep insight on what their band is all about… The Final Body… By Tzina Dovve…
Tzina: First of all Happy New Year..!! Final Body are a new band to emerge on the dark/alternative/goth scene. How and when exactly where you formed and who are the members of the band?
Final Body: Happy New Year and thank you for having us! Final Body is Scott Helgasson (vocals/keys), Taylor McDermott (bass), Tyler Caldwell (drums), and Nathan Swain (guitar) in 2017. The band was birthed from a previous project called Blood Pleasures consisting of Scott, his brother Brendon, Taylor and Nathan. After releasing a hastily home-recorded EP and Brendon having his first child, we decided that Blood Pleasures had run its course. Shortly after that, we asked our friend Tyler to drum with us and Final Body was born.
Tzina: What prompted the idea to form this band and baptise it with the name Final Body? Is there some sort of symbolic meaning behind this title?
Final Body: The four of us have been friends for over a decade and although we have all been part of other musical projects, this was the first time the four of us played music together. We decided on the name Final Body because we loved the idea of reincarnating to the point where you understand that this will be your final life on Earth. It’s the idea that this painful meat suit we lug around will be your final vessel to traverse our little planet.
Tzina: Who is the main songwriter behind the band’s creations? How is a Final Body song born? What triggers your inspiration to write music and what are your main musical influences?
Final Body: Scott and Taylor are the main songwriters in the band. They will demo ideas on their own at home and bring it to the practice space. Then we all pick these ideas apart and see if they will work as a band. The songs are all born differently. Some songs are written in a matter of hours and feel like it just falls out of us while others take weeks of work only to be thrown out. We will all get on each-other’s instruments and jam out ideas. Scotty may sing Taylor’s lyrics, Taylor may play a bass riff written by Tyler, and Nathan may play a guitar part written by Scotty. We just try to feel what the song needs and serve it. We are inspired by everything; music, art, our friendships, our city. Final Body tends to be fueled by working through pain and turning negative thoughts and feelings into songs you want to move around to.
Tzina: Your debut album ‘ Nothyng ‘ was released in August 2019. An album which brings back memories of post- punk and old-school goth with a melancholic touch at its finest moments.. As a new band what feedback has this album received so far both by music fans and the music press?
Final Body: The feedback so far has been wonderful. Overall Seattle has been very supportive of us and we’ve received a lot of love from local radio stations but we have also loved to see the support from people living in places we never thought would hear our music.
Tzina: What is ‘ Nothyng ‘ all about? What is the story behind this title? Can you elaborate..
Final Body: A lot of the songs on the album have a similar theme of isolation, apathy, and longing. There’s some sci-fi/horror elements to the stories in the songs and ‘Nothyng’ seemed like the through-line to connect all of this. Although the title is ambiguous, it seems to reflect the sense of an inner void that permeates through the album.
Tzina: As l understand Final Body signed to the music label Young and Cold Records during the summer last year? How did this collaboration come about for the band during the pandemic? How happy are you with your new music home so far?
Final Body: Young and Cold Records reaching out to us was a surprise. We have been longtime fans of so many of their artists and being added to the roster is an honor! They reached out to us and after a few conversations, it was obvious that they were awesome people and we realized that Y&C would be a great home for Final Body. We couldn’t be happier to be part of the family.
Tzina: Your new label re-released your album ‘ Nothyng ‘ both on black vinyl and a limited edition of coloured vinyl just a couple of months ago… How has this been received by your fans? Do you believe that music fans around the world are nostalgic for physical copies of music once again?
Final Body: We ended up making the first run of records all colored vinyl! At the time of this interview, the first people are starting to receive their orders and it has been so awesome to see fans post pictures of the album and share the love with us! The response locally and abroad has been great. I think people will always be nostalgic for vinyl and nothing compares to the intimacy of the vinyl format, sonically or physically. There’s just something so satisfying about putting on a record and geeking out over the artwork and enjoying all the special little extras you get with buying an album on vinyl.
Tzina: You also released videos for the songs ‘ Lose Health ‘ and ‘ Agitated ‘ from your album ‘ Nothyng ‘.. How important are videos to Final Body? Are there any plans for more videos from this album?
Final Body: Videos are a fun way to include our creative friends into our project. The videos for Lose Health and Agitated were filmed by our great friend Nick Alfaro. He also made the video for Devil after a wedding by filming Taylor stagger around a field like a drunk zombie. Adding a visual aspect to the music is a synergy we really enjoy and will continue to explore in the future whether it’s for songs from Nothyng or for new songs.
Tzina: Is the band working on any new material at the moment? Are there any plans for an upcoming release in the near future?
Final Body: Yes. We have new music ready for recording. We can’t wait to get back into the studio once it is safe to do so. We would love to release some singles and maybe release a new record by the end of the year if possible. Although we are unable to practice together, we are all writing music and recording ideas on our own. We will have plenty of ideas to work through once we all get together again.
Tzina: The year that we just left behind has been a very difficult time for the music industry and not only. How much do you think this pandemic will affect the arts around the globe?
Final Body: We can only hope that something good can come from this terrible year and we feel horrible for the small business venues and artists that are affected by the pandemic. It’s been rough as a fan to not be able to see artists live and share that energy together. Art will always find a way and artists are adapting and still finding ways to have a positive effect on people even in isolation. Although the landscape may be much different after this is all over, we hope that it will be better than ever.
Tzina: Do Final Body have any plans for any live shows when the world finally re-opens? Is playing live one of the band’s priorities? How much has this pandemic affected you as musicians?
Final Body: We felt like we were just getting into the swing of things when the pandemic hit and we had to cancel all of our live plans. We have no current plans and will definitely not be waiting to play live until there is a safe and responsible way to do so. We have all been affected by the pandemic as musicians and haven’t been able to see each-other or practice all together in a long time. As long-term friends and bandmates it’s been hard being apart. Although we are all writing and being creative in our own ways, we can’t wait to get back in a room together and write music again.
Tzina: Quite a few bands have emerged on the dark / alternative / goth scene during the past few years from every corner of the world.. From new bands to older bands re-forming and making a comeback… Do you believe there is some sort of goth revival happening at the moment? Do you follow the scene? Are there any bands you admire in particular?
Final Body: Music is cyclical, right? And it seems like it is the goth’s time to shine again! And who knows what the next revival will be. The goth scene in particular is a loyal one and always has been whether or not the artists are getting coverage. A couple of artists that we have been following are Lebanon Hanover, She Past Away and Choir Boy among others.
Tzina: What is the scene like in your hometown of Seattle? Do you think it differs from the rest of the world?
Final Body: Every city has its own flavor and Seattle seems to be a melting pot of different styles of music. What we like about Seattle is that there’s an overwhelming sense of camaraderie between musicians and show-goers! People from all walks of life can be found at any given show sharing their love for live music together. There is a thriving post-punk/dark-wave scene in Seattle and we love it! There are some really cool venues and clubs and a great house scene in Seattle too that we look forward to visiting again in the future.
Tzina: Anything else you would like to share with your fans? What can they expect from Final Body in the near future?
Final Body: We just want to thank everyone who has listened to our music online, thrown a pin on a jacket, or bought a record. You guys rock! If you want to contact us, you can message us through social media. We would love to hear from people since we are all stuck at home haha. New music is in the works! And hopefully we will be able to do some live performances this year if the state of the world provides! Until then, vinyl is available for ‘ Nothyng ‘ if you’re interested. www.finalbodyband.com for videos, socials, merch and all that good stuff.