We’re completely honored to share our exclusive interview with Arcane Ghosts! Arcane Ghosts are a band that continuously evolves, and it was amazing to chat with them at the beginning of this new chapter! We spoke with the band just before the release of their brand new EP, Distant Youth, which was the culmination of several years of hard work! We couldn’t wait to chat with Arcane Ghosts about songs like ‘Fever Dreams,’ their creative processes, and what longevity means to them, all in this interview!
Arcane Ghosts were super insightful and great to talk to, so we hope you enjoy this interview! The group bends genres like pop-punk, alternative, and indie all into one unique sound, so you need to lend them an ear! Distant Youth not only has some epic cover art, but it has five stellar tracks too. Streaming the Distant Youth EP is an absolute must, and you can do so right here!
Arcane Ghosts Exclusive Interview
It’s not long now until the release of your EP Distant Youth! How are you feeling in the run-up to release?
It’s super exciting!! Releasing music can bring out a lot of different emotions for everyone involved, but we’re confident that this EP is the stepping stone we need to get to the next level. We’re hoping that not only a lot of new ears hear the name Arcane Ghosts but that the “right” ears hear our music as well. If managers, booking agents, and A&R people for established labels give us an honest look, that would mean everything to us.
Does the fact that a few of the tracks have already been shared with fans make it a little less intimidating?
It definitely helps with the nerves a little, seeing as we already know how the response has been for those previously released songs. They’ve done so much for how the rest of the local scene sees us, so we’re pretty confident that it’ll continue on a larger scale with ears from all over the world tuning in.
Do you have a stand-out lyric that summarizes the album for you or that fans should keep an eye out for?
A lyric that always repeats in my own daily life is the lyric from our song ‘Paralyzed’ which is “Kerosene to my dreams.” With that line, I was referring to burning down nightmares that haunt your dreams, and that’s something I relate to personally. So much goes on in one day that our minds never stop thinking about all the grief, hate, or love that we experience in a lifetime. This lyric hits home for me, especially after losing my grandmother last year. It really hit my family in a sore spot since she was such a rock and made the family always come together no matter the distance. Losing her and having to work the next day was straining on my mental health and honestly made me want to quit my 9 to 5 job because that’s how much stress I felt. Suppression is a crazy thing, and burning the reoccurring dreams was the only way to keep things separate between my personal and my work life. It was a crazy roller coaster last year, but I coped by creating the song that is ‘Paralyzed.’ Definitely, a must-listen, in my opinion.
We’re obsessed with ‘Fever Dreams,’ but of course, we have to ask, what’s the weirdest dream you’ve ever had?
Steven: Haha, that’s a cool question. I’ve had plenty of bizarre dreams in my life, but the weirdest/most interesting dream I’ll share was about Toronto Raptors Basketball player OG Anunoby. He was hanging out with my friends and I at a Subway as if he was regularly part of our friend group, and people would come up to him and bug him for autographs. This may not seem all that weird, but this dream happened the night after OG had made a game-winning shot in the playoffs, so the timing was very, VERY suspect.
The set for this music video, where each of you performs either at the beach, in a bedroom, or amongst city skyscrapers, is so clever. How did you come up with the music video concept?
For the ‘Fever Dreams’ video (and ‘Butterfly’s video as well), we went with The Trenches Media as we were looking to do a video that was more “big budget.” The process of coming up with the ideas usually comes down to brainstorming with director Alex McFarland and with his creative vision, he can take any preliminary idea and turn it into a fully-fledged out storyboard with a concise plan. The concept for the multiple sets came into my mind from inspiration after watching some old music videos from Underoath. We wanted the video to be fun, but also chaotic in the sense that every scene switch would be a different background, which allowed for the use of 3 different characters. We originally wanted to go with something simple for all 3, but towards the end, we wanted to go for this beach/future sci-fi mix so we could really play well with the costumes and props we had available. We had an amazing props team for the music video (Shoutout to Braeden and Madi) who did a fantastic job of creating the sets that I had envisioned and pulled it off to a tee.
Distant Youth is sort of the culmination of the art you created during the pandemic. How did the lockdown affect your creative process?
The pandemic changed a lot of things for everyone, and us in Arcane Ghosts were no exception to that. We weren’t able to play as a full band for a while since we could only use public studios, and that forced us to write songs in a different way than we were used to doing. However, it allowed us to hear every part properly, whether it be guitar or bass, and being able to do a lot more trial and error to help create the best possible vocal hooks and lyrics. All in all, the shift in writing process resulted in creating the strongest music Arcane Ghosts ever made. Even though we practice as a full band these days, writing music in a quiet space will remain commonplace for as long as we’re a band.
The pandemic seemed to age us all at different speeds, with some people feeling frozen in time and some feeling like they grew up so fast. Do you feel closer or more distant from your youth now than you did pre-lockdown?
Steven: I personally feel a lot further from my youth than I ever did, as my life is completely different than what it was even right before the pandemic started. I lost my mom to breast cancer in March 2021, and that forever changed a lot of things, like my responsibilities with helping out my dad with various things. It’s super crazy that it’s been two years already… While so many things have happened since then it doesn’t feel like the time has passed all that quickly. So as far as feeling frozen in time and growing up fast, I seem to be in both boats.
Your last full EP was Human Interference, way back in 2019. What would you say is the biggest change between Distant Youth and your previous work?
The biggest change between Human Interference and Distant Youth all comes down to the writing and overall production of the EP. When writing Human Interference, Jason brought all the completed songs to the band and asked the bassist and drummer at the time to add their parts. The lyrics were polished off and brought to a final form with producer Sam Guaiana. Distant Youth was much different in the sense that Jason, Steven, and our old drummer Eric wrote all the parts together during the pandemic.
Your latest music is a very fun mix of indie, alternative, and classic pop-punk! Do you have any favorite artists or inspirations in those genres?
We certainly do! We enjoy a lot of different music between the three of us, so you can say there’s a bunch of sounds coming together whether we’re consciously taking influence from a specific artist or not. Jason’s biggest influence for his general style is Dance Gavin Dance, but we all enjoy some classic pop-punk. Ultimately, we don’t really aim for artist “sounds” when writing our music, rather we just go with what sounds good. Our producer said ‘Butterfly’ reminded him of the group Bloc Party, but funny enough, Jason had never heard of them prior to that!
You guys have been together for a while now. What would you say has been the biggest thing you learned about each other over the years?
Jason is the only founding member of Arcane Ghosts at this point, but I (Steven) have been in the band for about three years now, and Spas is close to being in the band for about a year and a half. I actually invited Spas into the band when the founding drummer Eric left since we played in a prior band together for many years. I think the biggest thing we have learned about each other is how seriously we take this band thing. I’ve seen many people lose sight of wanting certain band goals as they get older, but we’ve doubled down on it! It gets tough to do as the life commitments roll in, but it just means we work that much harder to put ourselves in a position for success.
Do you have any advice for bands who want to create longevity? What’s your secret?
Listening to each other is SUPER important. Communication is SUPER important. Treating each other with respect is SUPER important. Nothing makes someone want to leave a band faster than not following any one of those things listed above! As far as the writing process itself goes, keep listening to as much different music as possible and always strive to go outside your comfort zone beyond your natural influences.
You have some shows coming up in April! Are you looking forward to them? What can fans expect from these shows?
Ohhh yeah, we’re always looking forward to shows! It’s always fun to perform for new people and leave everything on the stage to play the best you can. You can always expect a good and entertaining show!
With Distant Youth, you’ve had a busy first quarter of 2023! What can we expect from Arcane Ghosts for the rest of the year?
Just shows, shows, shows! Lots of writing of new music too, and finding ways to stay relevant on social media through consistent content creation. We’re gonna keep hustling until we’re where we want to be…. Haha, and even then, we’ll keep hustling!
We can’t thank Arcane Ghosts enough for being so open and honest with us in this interview!
And for more interviews like this one, we’ve got you covered.
What do you think of Distant Youth? Have you got a favorite track yet? What did you think of our Arcane Ghosts interview? Give us all your thoughts in the comments below, or you can find us on Twitter @TheHoneyPOP, Facebook, and Instagram!