Catching Up With Wavelords To See What They Have Planned For New Year BC Exclusive: Interview with Megan Sutherland of Wavelords
LOS ANGELES, CA- Earlier this ear, I caught Wavelords performing at The Goldfish Highland Park. This was the first time hearing their music and catching them live… and they left an impression on me. Their music had me feeling dance-punk and electroclash vibes … but whatever you want to classify them, they were tons of fun. I caught up with the band’s front woman, Megan Sutherland, to get to know a little bit more about them and to see what they’ve got up coming down the road.
Blurred Culture: Hey, Megan. It’s good to catch up with you.
Megan Sutherland of Wavelords: Nice to talk to you again!
Blurred Culture: I really enjoyed your performance at The Goldfish earlier this year. Was really feeling the dark wave, synth vibe that you had going on. I tried to do a little research on Wavelords … Google… to find out more about you guys, but it seems like you’re a relatively new artist in the space. Wanted to find out more about you, like what do you do on the daily? Are you guys professional musicians or do you all have day jobs? Just want to get a sense of where you guys are coming from?
Wavelords: I guess on your multi-hyphenate artist. For the most part, I’m a makeup artist. I’ve been doing that professionally for the last 15 years… in film and mostly fashion. I’ve been making music on the side the whole time. I’ve been in bands before but it was always kind of a hobby. During the pandemic, I teamed up with Kool Karlo, a long time friend and my partner Arian… and we were, you know, kind of doing it just for fun. Then it just started to take off and turned into something. It’s really exciting to be able to share our music with people because it was sort of more of a hobby.
Blurred Culture: What kind of music were you dabbling in before, the same kind of genre?
Wavelords: Well, we all come from really different backgrounds. I was dabbling more in the early 2000s, kind of the electro-dance space. Like Peaches and Miss Kitten… that kind of vibe. Karlo was coming from breakbeats and hip hop. And during that time Arian was playing thrash metal and punk. So when we come together, it kind of makes its own thing. But we all have very different backgrounds.
Blurred Culture: Whose idea was it for you guys to come together as a group to create music?
Wavelords: Karlo and I have been making music together for 13 years. So, I think we started to explore that again when we weren’t working on set anymore. Arian is a shredder/guitar player… and heard us writing music together and kinda added his two cents and it sort of just formed organically. So, Carlo and I started it, and then it just took off when we heard Arian riff on the guitar.
Blurred Culture: Where does the name Wavelords come from?
Wavelords: That’s a great question! It started out that we were trying to comment on some sort of cyber- overlord. And then we wanted it to play with the idea of soundwaves because of the heavy synths and bass in our songs. Arian’s a surfer, so “Wavelord” sort of just made sense. It fit all three of our archetypes.
Blurred Culture: So, you guys started recording during the pandemic and released a couple of singles in 2021 and released a couple more singles this year. What do you guys have up your sleeves?
Wavelords: We have two new songs to play at our show at Permanent Records Roadhouse. January seventh. So, we’re excited to share those. And our EP is done … “Crucial Conflict”… which has the songs you heard us perform with those two, but we’re trying to finish the whole album this year and have some music videos to go with it. “Crucial Conflict” is up Spotify right now… we want to press it on vinyl.
Blurred Culture: Well, I’m a fan of the vinyl, so if you put it on wax, I’ll be sure to pick one up.
Blurred Culture: So, does Karlo work in the film or makeup industry like you do?
Wavelords: Karlo is a sound engineer. He’ll do soundtracks for stuff or he’ll do sound engineering for bands … but he’s also another slasher. He does all different kinds of computer things and kind of has his hand in a lot of different cookie jars. And Arian is a film director. So, the music videos we’re gonna be making this year are gonna be made by him.
Blurred Culture: The entertainment industry can get pretty busy, and I’m sure all of you guys have different schedules and stuff … when do you guys find the time to actually work together to create the music? Is it all done kind of remotely… sending each other digital files or do you guys actually set some time aside for everything?
Wavelords: We have practiced together once a week where we can kinda get all our ideas formed, but usually we send each other files and we just start rapping back and forth through email and text. When Aryan shreds, he’ll be writing some riffs… and I’ll have my vocals… but usually we can only meet once a week. During the pandemic, it was really great because we’re meeting a lot more. But that’s been a challenge trying to find time with our schedules.
Blurred Culture: Is it hard to navigate balancing all of your schedules?
Wavelords: I think booking shows is really good for us because it forces us to really meet up and practice for the shows and just really keeps us inspired. I’m really inspired by a lot of the music out right now. And that keeps me going and wanting to make more. And so I just I’d love to play some festivals, there are some more shows this year and I’ll make time for it because it’s really fun and we love it.
Blurred Culture: Continuing on that idea of “inspiration”, what music inspires you? What’s in your playlist right now?
Wavelords: I’m really into Boy Deluxe. I really like Torii Wolf. She’s a producer and a singer. Uh, I really like The Bobby Lees. I don’t know if you’ve you’ve heard them yet, but they’re kind of like a thrsahy kind of punk band out of New York. I’m kind of all over the place. So, that’s why Wavelords is kind of all over the place too.
Blurred Culture: If you were forced to classify or describe your band to somebody, what would you say? If you had to pick three adjectives, what would they be?
Wavelords: Dystopian dance music.
Blurred Culture: Okay, I can totally see that. I’m remembering your outfit for The Goldfish gig.
Wavelords: Your getting a Bladerunner kind of vibes… Kind of darker themes and apocalypse. But then we also do it with a sense of humor. We love the B- 52s and take a campy kind of approach to those subjects.
Blurred Culture: I feel you. If I remember that Goldfish show, you also had a special guest perform with you?
Wavelords: Yeah, Farah Shea. She’s such a beast. She’s awesome … and she’s gonna be at the show at Permanent Records as well!
Blurred Culture: You opened for Jen Awad. I love her. Are you two friends?
Wavelords: Yeah, Jenna Awad. I was a fan before I became her friend. I love seeing her shows and just her energy on stage. I just feel like she’s a Janis Joplin … metal version … or something. I became friends with her through Farah. She’s great!
Blurred Culture: With the L.A. music scene coming out of its shell this past year, do you have any thoughts about state of independent music in LA these days?
Wavelords: I’m seeing more space for D.I.Y….smaller spaces… with stuff more like Echo park, rising, and less Coachella. And that’s my favorite kind of show. Just more home, you know, home roots … grassroots, just the local band scene. I’m just really excited. I see a lot of people starting bands or making albums in the last couple of years. Not that I took it for granted before … but I think audiences are really excited to see live music again.
Blurred Culture: The new music you have coming out. The two new songs that you’re gonna debut at the Permanent Roadhouse show. The videos you plan on creating. Other than that… what are you envisioning for Wavelords in 2023?
Wavelords: I definitely see us getting more experimental with our sound and doing more drum and bass and more thrash metal and just getting a little bit heavier with our sound. And I just see us stepping more into the space of creating music videos and more visuals to go with our music. because we, you know, we’re all in that industry anyway, so it comes kind of easy to us to do that, but we just haven’t made the time for it. But I think now that we’ve created a body of work, we want to share that and have a visual to you know, go with it.
Blurred Culture: So a Wavelords push in 2023.
Wavelords: Yeah! I’m excited. I hope so. I hope so. We were thinking …. we’re still not very keen on social media … we’re kinda old school in that way. So we’re thinking we want to do a 1 800 number. I don’t know what you think about that, but…
Blurred Culture: Well you never, you never know until you try.
Wavelords: Good call!
Follow Wavelords on Bandcamp and follow Meg on Instagram.