The 4th ever official post on Indieful ROK, all the way back in January 2008, was a short notice on the coming release of Loro’s first full-length album. I had been a fan earlier and became even more of a fan with the release–I even named it as one of the top albums of that year. Dreamy EP Dream(s) followed the next year, but since then it’s been sort of quiet. Though rumors of a new album have been floating around for quite some time, it wasn’t until Thursday last week that the second full-length album from Loro’s was finally released. It’s a beautiful, beautiful creation that well deserves all the praise it’s received so far. Curious to learn more I reached out to the band with a few questions.
What is Loro’s?
Well, people often ask where our name came from and ask things like “what does Lolo’s mean?” (hehe this one gets a few giggles) “Does it mean parakeet in Spanish?” etc. but actually, the name has a very simple history. In the beginning, Jin Shil (guitar) and Doe Jaemyoung (keyboard/vocal/leader) started the band with no name, but when asked last minute by the Bbang Club manager Young Deung what the name of the band was, Jaemyoung, a bit rushed, looked at his cd player and saw Pinback and saw their track “Loro” and then thought “Loro’s?” and the rest is history. It’s kind of a silly story actually. In any case, our band has grown to 6 members: two guitars (Jong Min and Jin Shil), drummer (Namgyu), bass (Seok), keyboard/vocal/leader (Jaemyoung), and synths/vocals/cello (Jane).
After almost a decade, how would you say your sound has progressed?
The time that it took to make this album was 6 years. The first album and the EP from before took less than 2 years–one year at most. So in that time, everyone had separate experiences, immersed himself/herself in different side projects, etc. All that has become part of what we are now.
In the beginning, the group was more or less led by a few key figures, but as time progressed, everyone has started to take part in the songwriting/production process, so the WANDY album has that group effort imbued in it. Everyone took part of the writing, the mixing, and the recording processes.
In addition, as time progressed, there were more hurdles to get over (obligatory army service, family problems, health issues, financial issues) and instead of the initial excitement of everything, being together and working together became a test of faith and the only thing we could do was believe in each other despite doubts. (There were times when we didn’t have a place to practice, when schedules just made it hard to meet up, etc.)
In any case, the album and sound of before was more focused on conveying a particular picture/drawing of sound, but as our individual stories became more pronounced, our sound has become more focused on creating scenarios.
Definitely, some of the things we really concentrate on in practice is creating a wall of sound and making sure that each part doesn’t really have a solo voice but rather, the 6 voices combine to make a unified output. But ultimately, our message has not really changed and we still focus on conveying the message of protecting all things pure via music.
What do you hope will be the takeaways for listeners of W.A.N.D.Y?
Well, there is a main theme for this album, and that is based on the acronym W.A.N.D.Y which stands for We are not dead yet. If you listen to the full album straight through, the message becomes clearer because there are waves within it, but if you look at some of the lyrics (in Korean) of the song “Let’s dance” there is a part which translates to “On beautiful nights, we dance; On sad, difficult nights, we often dream.” So WANDY is all about hope and patience, and filtering out the bad things/experiences in life, and doing what only humans can do in all situations, which is to celebrate life and realize that no matter what situation, we are not dead yet.
What comes next?
Well, we have many concerts lined up. On the 8th, we are playing at the Mu:CON festival and the following Sunday, for the Zandari Festa. In addition, we have a two day album release concert scheduled for the 8th-9th of November at Veloso in Hongdae. (Tickets for the 8th are already sold out!)
Hopefully, we can now start to perform live more and are thinking of doing a tour in Korea and hopefully, via Mu:CON to the states for SXSW!
Go! Loro’s! I hope the world, and not just Korea and the states, will see plenty more of Loro’s in the years to come. I have yet to see this magnificent band live myself, but sources have it seizing such an opportunity is well worth the effort.