Kalimur is an alternative pop / rock band from Connecticut and on January 25, 2016, the band will release their second album Redemption. With a quick listen of their music you can here the influences of Coldplay, The Fray, and Imagine Dragons; but this band is not a cheap knock-off. Kalimur has a well produced, full sound that is distinctly their own.
The Redemption release show will be held at The Space in Hamden, CT on January 29.
The band released their first album Ghost We Used To Know in April of 2015. Kalimur is made up of Brett Steinberg (singer, songwriter), Tyler Berkich (bass), Alex Touren-Trend (guitar), and Jonah Profe (drums).
Monkeys Fighting Robots music reporter Sam Casale spoke with Steinberg, Berkich, and Touren-Trend about there new album and the unforgiven journey that is the music industry.
You guys have gone on record stating that the name Kalimur means nothing and is nothing more than “unique and fresh.” Do you feel as though in today’s culture people tend to judge a book by it’s cover or in this instance, a band by its name?
“Because we live in such a digital age where so many bands are present, and people don’t have to actively search for a band, it has become the unfortunate truth that many bands need a cool logo or a catching name in order to not get lost amidst the several other bands that exist today. First impressions are really important, and we took this into consideration when making our band name and logo. You could have the best music in the world but without an appealing name, people won’t find out about it. First impressions are everything.” -Tyler
“With the band name being something that isn’t a word, it gives us this clean slate. This is important for us especially with alternative music because it gives our band a new and fresh vibe and that’s what we want.” -Brett
It’s safe to say you guys are starting to become pretty successful in the world of music, a business that is unpredictable and nothing is guaranteed. At what moment did a career in the music industry go from wishful thinking into a reality?
“Over time you start to think about it, and it starts to become a little more tangible to you. When you start out, anyone that goes that isn’t doing it simply for fun have an end goal in mind of being able to pay off your bills and live off your music. We hit these milestones when we released our first record, and we had a good amount of sales and a lot of really good feedback. We were kind of like ‘alright it’s getting there’ once we were playing bigger shows and we were getting people on Twitter from places like Brazil tweeting at us and preordaining our album. I was like ‘what? Brazil? Like that’s insane!’ That was when I was like ‘alright, I think we’re getting somewhere and were going somewhere good.'” -Tyler
“Yeah, the more you see people getting on board with what you’re doing gives you encouragement and lets you know that people believe in what we from the start believed in. It makes you think that this could be bigger than just something than just us four (our drummer could not make the call today) and really motivates the movement of what we are doing.”-Brett
Speaking of your drummer, on the band website he cites Led Zeppelin as a big influence on him. How do you guys infuse each of your own different influences together to create the sound that is Kalimur?
“I think that our influences our so different from each other that they play off from each other very nicely and they kind of add together to create a broad spectrum of sound that is unique and people really like it. People have mentioned that they like this unique sound, and I think that is because of our variety of musical influences.” -Alex
“I would say when we’ve gotten feedback from people saying that we sound a certain way, they always say ‘man I can hear certain influences, but I can’t pinpoint exactly what you’re doing’ and I think this is because we bring such a large mosaic of so many different influences from all different sides that it all comes together into this sound that is something that people can are somewhat familiar with but at the same time, it draws from so many different influences of artist and our own life experiences that it creates something different from people.” -Brett
Do you feel as though that your music and the message it conveys speaks to a certain niche or group of people or would you say that your music and its motives can be understood universally?
“I think our first album Ghost We Used to Know fell into the former category. It was a very optimistic record about looking forward and about seeing the bright side in things. A lot of the time when we were writing we were thinking ‘if you are feeling this type of way, what could someone say to pull you out of it?’ This record bridges that gap because we instead wrote about experiences that everybody has been through and stuff that everyone has felt.” -Tyler
“I feel as though the message of a lot of our music is staying true to ourselves. Someone who does not love alternative music could still be able to understand and connect with the message. Our goal is to stay true to what we truly feel and balance this with music that people can really get into. One of our biggest memories is when we played at a large showcase with a bill composed of mainly metal bands, and yet the audience really seemed to like our music. This was eye-opening in the sense that we realized that as long as you really bring energy to the table it really can cross over these arbitrary dividers of fans of one genre to fans of another genre.” -Brett
In a few songs such as “Gone”, “Shadow”, and “Learn to Grow” there is a reoccurring idea of heartbreak, moving forward, and finding it hard to let go. Are any of these themes based off of experiences from your own lives?
“I think we are very experiential writers. It’s very hard for us to really get into themes that are not taken from our lives and that we are not passionate about. Every song that we write on our last record and this upcoming record have been based off something that we have gone through, and we were able to manifest this into a song. During the writing of “Gone,” Brett and I had an idea as to where we wanted the song to go, and he looked at me at one point and told me that he had never gone through this. I had to take charge on writing most of the lyrics for that one because he was unable to voice a place that I had been.” -Tyler
“A lot of the times we fill in the gaps for each other. Many of the times the experiences are something that we’ve all been through, but we come at it from different angles. As much as we kind of take influences from a bunch of different artist and bands, we also kind of take all of our different life experiences and this creates a unique outlook. We all have the same general feelings towards it but with different perspectives of how we got to that feeling.” -Brett
“I think a lot of artists write about experiences that they have gone through or experiences that someone they know has gone through. When you get something so close, it impacts you more, and it lets you write and carry it out into song.” -Alex
When you are in the process of creating a new song, do any members take more of an initiative or role in the song creating process or is it an equal contribution from all the members?
“For the majority of it, it’s Brett. Alex once said he’s ‘a machine.’ When he has free time he will just send me like twelve texts of just voice memos of him humming something random while he’s in the bathroom brushing his teeth. He just has all of these ideas in his head of the way he wants things to go. I might help him out with tweaking a melody but most of the time he makes a concrete melody, and we all just try to add on to what he has already made. The majority of the time, the theme and melody of the song always comes from Brett.” -Tyler
“That being said, everyone in the band is a songwriter. This is really interesting because we all have a creative side that influences the music. This kind of gives an interesting aspect to our music.” -Brett
(Alex then sent me a link to a video that reminded him of Brett’s voice recordings.)
How does this upcoming album Redemption differ from your last major project Ghost We Used to Know?
“The core difference between the two is that Redemption is a bit more emotionally heavy, and it gets darker at times. The big thing that we take away from it is that Ghost We Used to Know is more hindsight and more about looking at the silver linings after the storm and Redemption is more about what you feel when you’re in the middle of these intense emotional moments. Redemption feels like you’re in the moment and it is about how its ok to feel what you are feeling when dealing with these difficult experiences. That being said, no matter ow dark and heavy redemption can get at moments, there is always this sense of optimism.” -Brett
What has been the biggest motive for being a musician and for doing what you do?
“I was actually such a good professional athlete that I decided to give everyone else a chance on the court. In all seriousness, the arts have always been a place I’ve felt at home. It was only until I played a show with Brett and I saw an audience react to a band that played after us when I realized that music transcends language and different cultures which is a really beautiful thing. At that point, it was a no-brainer for me.” -Tyler
“I feel as though music is a really beautiful thing because it’s there no matter what. Your setting and family will go away, but no matter what, music will always stay. Even those who cant hear music can feel the sound waves. It’s something that seems eternal, and it’s important because of that.” -Alex
If there is one message you could tell your fans, what would that be?
“Thank you. We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without our fans. There words of encouragement is what keeps us going. They are the ones that come to shows and listen to our music.” -Tyler
“A huge thank you to our fans. It is really inspiring for us to have this community around us to support what we are doing. I’d also say that I hope that you always know that there is something for you. At the end of the day, at the very least you have your favorite artist and because of this, you are never completely on your own. We really appreciate you and everything you do for us.” -Brett
“We are just happy that people engage in our music and once again, thank you.” -Alex
For more information on Kalimur, checkout their website: kalimurband.com