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Posted: June 23 2011 at 09:12
YESTERDAYS is a contemporary progressive rock band composed of seven musicians and belonging to the Hungarian minority of Western Romania. This Transylvanian band plays a complex blend of several styles: a basically classic symphonic Prog is redefined here with some jazzy, folk and atmospheric touches - all of these played with a youthful energy, inner light and sunny mood. Lyrics are in both English and Hungarian, and along with the fine instrumental passages they simply find the pathway to any old-school Prog-fan with an open heart and mind.
I got in touch with the band and Akos answered my questions.
Your biography has been covered in your ProgArchives profile so let's bypass the biography details. But which bands were you influenced by and why did you choose that name ?
Our biggest influence was Yes, without any doubt. So, back than when I was a hardcore Yes fan, I had to choose a band name including these 3 letters :) It was so simple: Yesterdays. We got used to this name, now we love it, it's a brand new band.
How was the music scene in your area when you started ?
Nobody played progressive rock in Romania, when we've started Yesterdays. Actually, we are the only band playing progrock. Strangely and luckily we had a very positive feedback from the audiences, and not only from progrockers.
Let's go straight to the first album. Please tell us more about Holdfénykert from 2006
After You and I's disbanding I felt the need to write more music and our activity with Yesterdays got more intense. Almost all the songs were written until that moment. We got lucky, because we had all the freedom to create the material in the studio. Using mellotrons and moogs was a long time dream, and it came true with Holdfénykert.
That album came as an enhanced English version two years later. Please tell us more about this version and the differences between these two versions.
Actually it is a remaster with extended booklet and a multimedia enhancement for PC users. Musea Records encouraged us to enhance the sound quality and to make a rich booklet. For me the first edition is more important, but this second edition was a better success.
Please tell us more about your brand new album Colours Caffé.
This is the fresh sound of the band, we got crazy with the recorded channels in the studio. We had the chance to invite our heroes to play with us. Mohai Tamás is probably the best guitarist in Hungary, my greatest influence. he played in a jazzrock band called Faxni and the mighty East in the eighties. On two tracks Borlai Gergely played some extraordinary drums. He is nr. 1. session drummer in Hungary. The album was mastered by King's X guitarist Ty Tabor. Too bad we had this idea too late to invite him to play some solos for us. Maybe on the 3rd Yesterdays CD... This material is more powerful than the mellow Holdfénykert, still prog, but with quality pop influences. Some sounds will remind you of Holdfényert too, but this sound is fresh here.
You have gone back to singing in your native language on Colours Caffé. Please tell us more about why.
First of all, Musea encouraged us, and we got so many positive feedback from the States and Japan about this native language thing. And this is heart warmint, you know... we talk, feel, sing and love in Hungarian... in English it's more "popular" but converting these thoughts and feelings are sometimes hard to translate. Hungarian is a very deep and rich language. And as we found out from the reviews and critics, it seems to be somehow exotical to proggers with open minds and ears. We are very thankful that yesterdays is accepted this way. We are planning some English releases in the future though. A concept album is in it's making process....
You have also released a couple of Eps and taken part in various projects. Please tell us more about this.
Our friend Marco Bernard invited us to play on Colossus Magazine's project albums: The Spaghetti Epic II, Inferno (for this track Jonas Reingold joned us on bass), Purgatorio, Paradiso, the Tribute to the Flower Kings, Tuonen Tytar II, etc. It's fun to write music so we got ourseves involved. Music and prog is FUN!
How is the creative processes in your band from coming up with the ideas to commiting them into an album ?
It's so very easy for us. We write songs in the rehearsal room. Each member is very creative so only the limited ammount of time can be the problem. Usually I am coming up with the basic ideas and later we are working on them together. I am inspired by sounds of new instruments, I have 14 guitars and a piano in my living room, so there is an instrument for every mood and occasion. It's so easy and fun to work this way.
Just to give those of us who are unknown with your music a bit of a reference point or two: How would you describe your music ?
Imagine some Yes-like moods with touch of some sixties vibes and quality pop influences. Some weeks ago I've seen Roxette playing live in Budapest. It was a true progpop experience for me. That's no surprise. If you are looking deep into it, you'll find Beatles infuences and very clever mood hanges and instrumentation. Not only me, but the whole band is inspired and open minded about these influences and musical ideas. Zoltán, our bass player is listening to Megadeath and Chicago :)), Zsolt, the keyboard player listens a lot of electronic music. Linda is into jazz and pop. Our drummer, József is a jazzrock guy and I am the popwerpop and symphonic prog guy. Near all these things Yesterdays is still a SymphoProg band. It's interesting, but true :))
How is the concert scene in your area now and do you get many gigs ?
We found out that Romania is a better place to play prog than Hungary. Usually we got big audiences in Transylvania and the radios are playing our radios edit versions in these areas. Thanks to the catchy songs non-prog people are coming to our gigs and enjoying Seven too :). A proof that prog can be popular. A lucky situation for us.
What is your plans for the rest of this year and beyond ?
We try to play live as much as we can to prepare ourselves for a live DVD recording. We have some new songs too for the next record and many many new ideas too. So we are busy as always. So, the plans go like this: a live DVD+CD and after thet a new album in 2012.
To wrap up this interview, is there anything you want to add to this interview ?
Colours Caffé has just been released in Japan by DiskUnion with OBI, japanese linear notes and a bonus disk with rarities and interesting versions. We have put so much work in it, I think it's a collector's item. So, if you are lucky, you still can get one Limited Editon double version from Japan. Soon we'll start a competition on our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/yesterdaysband .... stay with us. Thanks! :)
Thank you to Akos for this interview
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|Post Options Quote Reply Posted: June 23 2011 at 10:04|
Excellent, thanks Torodd!
Rock Progressivo Italiano!
Joined: December 19 2007
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|Post Options Quote Reply Posted: June 23 2011 at 13:23|
What a great band. Many thanks!
"A good album should always be much more about questions than answers." Bill Bruford
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|Post Options Quote Reply Posted: July 15 2011 at 03:19|
I've read on their website that they are planning to do a video for one of their new songs from Colours Caffé with an audio different from the album version of Bábu (Puppet) and from the Japanese version of the song (there are some different solos) Interesting. Looking forward to this! Nice interview Torodd! Thanks a lot!
I love Music!
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