Artists | Issues | CD Reviews | Interviews | Concert Reviews | DVD/Video Reviews | Book Reviews | Who We Are | Staff | Home

Aziola Cry

Interviewed by Gary Hill
Interview with Jason Blake of Aziola Cry from 2006
MSJ: This interview is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2006 Volume 3 at

Can you catch the readers up on the history of the band?
About three years ago I began writing the material for what became Ellipsis. At the time, I was somewhat unsure of what instrumentation to use for the songs. I had been playing with a drummer and cellist but always envisioned this music heavy and with a guitarist. After playing a couple shows and trying out different guitarists, I found Mike of whom we shared a common excitement for progressive music. I recorded the album with the drummer that I was playing with previously but due to creative differences, we parted ways shortly after the CD was completed. I immediately called up Tim who is an old friend and asked if he would join us. It was at that point that everything came together.
MSJ: I know people don't like to describe their music or see it pigeonholed, but care to give it a try?
I guess that the category it fits best in would be progressive metal.
MSJ: Who do you see as your musical influences, both personally and as a band?
Personally, my biggest musical influence is Swedish bass virtuoso, Jonas Hellborg. Although I mainly play the Chapman Stick now, I am originally and to some degree still a bassist. Everything that Jonas does is a masterpiece in my eyes. As far as the band is concerned, I would say that the music is most influenced by bands like King Crimson and Tool.
MSJ: Are there musicians out there with whom you would like to work?
I am a big fan of the Kronos Quartet and the music that they play. I think that it would be great to incorporate a string quartet into Aziola Cry. I'd also love to play Indian Ragas with tabla master Zakir Hussain.
MSJ: Where did the name come from?
I have been a fan of Percy Shelley's poetry ever since I was introduced it in high school. The name comes from one of his poems where he hears this cry and finds it to be the most beautiful yet sad sound that he has heard.
MSJ: Do you think that downloading of music is a help or hindrance to the careers of musicians? It's been said by the major labels that its essentially the heart of all the problems they are having in terms of lower sales would you agree?
As an independent artist, I don't really have a problem with it. The way that I see it, the more people that actually get my music in their hands, the better off I'll be. I think that the major label's problems stem more from the fact that bands don't need them anymore. Unless you are some mega band that requires a label of that size, nowadays you can do almost everything yourself or with the help of a smaller independent label.
MSJ: In a related question, how do you feel about fans taping and trading live shows?
I think that it is kind of cool for those fans that enjoy doing that sort of thing. The only other option really is for the artist to supply the fans with the recordings themselves like Peter Gabriel and others have done.
MSJ: What is on the road map for the future for Aziola Cry?
The plan is to continue doing shows to promote Ellipsis including a small tour later in the year. In the meantime, I want to start showing the guys in the band the new material that I have written for the next album. My goal is to start incorporating these songs into our set and then record them later this year or early next year. We are also about half way done recording a new epic 25-minute song that I hope to release as some sort of limited edition.
MSJ: What was the last CD you bought?
The last CD that I bought was the new album by Tool, 10,000 Days. I don't think that it has come out of my CD player since. A year before Opiate was released, I was working at a record store and we received this four-track demo cassette by an unheard of band by the name of Tool. I just thought that this music was so great and couldn't wait for a proper release to come out. I saw them play at a small club around that time with six people in the audience, three of whom I came with. Now look at them. I think that they get better and better with every album.
MSJ: What about the last concert you attended for your enjoyment?
I think that would probably be the last time that Porcupine Tree came through town. I must admit that I didn't really get into them until just recently but I am really enjoying digging into their back catalog. There is some really great music there.
MSJ: Finally, are there any closing thoughts you would like to get out there?
I think that it is a great time for progressive rock. There are a lot of amazing musicians and bands out there playing some of the most incredible music. The best part is that the Internet makes this music very accessible and brings attention to a lot of talent.
Return to the
Aziola Cry Artist Page
Artists Directory

   Creative Commons License
   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.

    © 2024 Music Street Journal                                                                           Site design and programming by Studio Fyra, Inc./