Post-grunge group Stellar Lane formed in Tel Aviv, Israel in 2006. Comprised of brothers Yonatan and Udi Fogelzang, Dotan Kalmar, Nadav Kaftzan, Adam Younger, and Eyal Golan, the sextet are channeling their alternative influences into their personalized grungy rock sound. The band will be opening for The Toniks at Toronto’s The Rivoli on May 11th (tickets), and ahead of the show, we caught up with them to discuss their influences, the lively scene in Isreal, and living a double life.
AMBY: Hello Stellar Lane, what’s the band been up to lately?
Stellar Lane: Hi! So the last few months have been very busy for us. In addition to our regular schedule of performing in Israel we’ve been working on our latest E.P., “Follow Your Mind”, with a famous Israeli producer and released it a couple months ago. After receiving the news of being accepted to play a couple of showcases in CMW we’ve started working on a schedule for a tour in Ontario which starts on May 6th.
AMBY: How would you describe each member of the band in one word?
Stellar Lane: Jonathan Vogelsang (Lead singer, Acoustic guiter) – Sleepy. William Vogelsang (Lead singer, Keyboards) – Grumpy.
Dotan Kalmar (Electric guitar) – Dopey. Adam Younger (Bass guitar) – Doc. Eyal Golan (Drums) – Happy.
AMBY: The band features dual lead singers who happen to be brothers. What’s it like having siblings in the band — does it make working together easier, or do you butt heads more often because of it?
Stellar Lane: The Vogelsang brothers have been composing music together way before the band was formed. Prior to William joining the band, Jonathan had been advising him regarding vocal parts, as well as composition of some of the songs. So when William joined the band his integration was very smooth as he already knew most of the songs. Now their joint work is far more easy. Thanks to their continuous work over the years they understand and able to execute each other’s ideas in a matter of seconds.
AMBY: What was one of the best moments you had while recording your latest release Follow Your Mind?
Stellar Lane: Our work on the E.P. and choosing its track list was a work that lasted for almost a year. After we’ve finalized the track list for the E.P. we met our producer and offered to play him a song that we just started to work on and that we really loved and thought could really work in the E.P. He was reluctant to hear it as the track list was already done and we were supposed to move a step forward and start working on vocals, but eventually we persuaded him to listen to it. As expected he heard the song and immediately fell in love with it. We needed to take out another song, which was a very difficult task as well but all in all we feel it was only for the best. The song made its way to the track list and eventually as the title track of the E.P
AMBY: What’s the significance behind the EP’s title?
Stellar Lane: A recurring concept in our E.P. is the topic of urban lifestyle and the modern way that our lives are conducted. We feel it is more important that everyone follow their own dreams and desires.
AMBY: Some of your stated influences are Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, and Stone Temple Pilots. If you could hang out with any of your influences for a day, who would you choose and what would you do?
Stellar Lane: Since every single one of us was exposed to Grunge in a different way it is hard to pick only one of the list of our influences. The Vogelsang brothers will love to witness Chris Cornell of Soundgarden as he lays down one of his vocal tracks in the studio. Kalmar wants to sit with Jerry Cantrell of Alice In Chains and watch him as he composing a guitar riff. Younger and Golan want to hang out with the Foo Fighters and see their work at the rehearsal studio and the experience the vibes as they write a new song.
AMBY: Which other artists from Israel should our readers check out?
Stellar Lane: In Israel there is a very lively scene and new bands are popping-up every week. Some bands that we know of, and have proven themselves for sticking up and providing great shows are Onoma and 01E. Onoma plays alternative-metal and have been touring Europe a few months back. 01E plays electronic-rock and just released their E.P.
AMBY: If you could live a double life, describe it in a few sentences.
Stellar Lane: We would say that we’re already living a double life. We all have careers and are not full time musicians. It doesn’t mean that we spend equal time on each of them. Music is, without a doubt, our main passion and what drives our wheels. That leads to the fact the even while we’re supposed to focus on tasks from our other careers we find ourselves dealing with some of the band issues and thinking of how to further promote the band.
AMBY: Lastly, what’s something about Stellar Lane that nobody knows yet?
Stellar Lane: Every member of Stellar Lane has served in the Israeli army, and this is actually what brought the band together. Jonathan and Adam met in the army and served for more than 2 years together. They’ve slept in the same room for most of that time and jamming together in their free time. This is what initially sparked the idea of forming a band and writing songs together. This is, for example, how the song Fairy Tale was written.
Thank you Stellar Lane, for giving us your answers!
Alicia Atout |