Volume 95, Issue 76

Friday, February 15, 2002

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"Authentic" restaurant feels cheap and fake

Western gets ready for Purple Shorts

Like a rocket in your Pocket, these Dwellers bring the funk

Vagina opens up to the Western audience

Disc of the Week

Space rock takes flight in London

Rollerball = worst movie ever

Shits and Giggles

Space rock takes flight in London

By Megan O'Toole
Gazette Staff

Sianspheric do not believe in mixing politics with music.

"I'd like to say that we're trying to get a specific message across, but I really can't," admits Sean Ramsay, vocalist for the Burlington-based group. "The music just conveys the way we feel when we write it."

Sianspheric is a name that represents the convergence of two separate ideas.

"Sian was the name of a girl we knew," Ramsay explains. "But we decided that we wanted our name to have a more global feel, so adding the suffix 'spheric' seemed appropriate."

Gazette File Photo

Following numerous lineup changes, the band is finally coming into its own with a unique and distinctive blend of sound.

When asked to label the band's genre, Ramsay laughs.

"Of course I have to classify our music – this is the press," he observes. "I've heard all sorts of labels for our music – space rock, alternative space music, space noise – but I would say 'ambient rock' is the most fitting."

Describing the mellow, relaxing feel of their music, Ramsay notes that Sianspheric's sound is indicative of the band members' personalities. "We are totally laid back and I think that comes out in the music," he says.

Ramsay says the band's inspiration is drawn from life experiences. "I'd like to avoid clichés, but our ideas really do come from everything that happens around us."

During the interval between the release of Sianspheric's debut album Somnium and their latest, The Sound of the Colour of the Sun, Ramsay asserts the band has changed musically. "We are experimenting more with extremes now," he says. "With Somnium, our music had a quieter feel."

Though he has not always been into the alternative scene, Ramsay's interest in music began at a young age. After attending a wild Jesus & Mary Chain concert as a teenager, his fascination with the industry increased.

"People just went crazy and smashed the place up," he recalls. "It was really cool."

These days however, Ramsay is largely critical of the popular music scene. "It's not evolving," he says. "A lot of the music out today is the same. I can go to clubs and hear the stuff I would hear back in 1994 – it's like being in a timewarp."

Aside from a stagnant music scene, Ramsay says the widespread complacency reflects a prevalent problem in modern society.

"It takes something like Sept. 11 to make people think about what's going on in Afghanistan," he says. "But I'm guilty of complacency too. I'm extremely apathetic."

In his defence, Ramsay says Sianspheric's primary goal is to create music rather than to play the political game. "I'd like to include political messages in our music, but I don't feel that I have enough to say about [politics]," he admits.

"I didn't always know that I wanted to do music professionally," Ramsay says, looking back to his childhood years. "[But] I can't really say we're professionals yet."

Sianspheric will be playing with Microbunny tonight at Call the Office. Tickets are $6 at the door.

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