For many of us who grew up playing in garage bands, we daydream about what life could’ve been like if we continued jamming and made it to the big-time. That very well could’ve been the case for progressive rock outfit Magna Zero, but after a ten year hiatus from growing up playing music together, they (David Aubrey (drums), Chris DiCesare (lead guitar), and Jason Moore (vocals, bass guitar, and keys)) reconvened in Los Angeles and started full steam ahead on their new project, blending elements of psych-rock and punk together with an emphasis on spatial exploration to create a fascinating mess of distortion. In advance of their debut album The Great Nothing coming in early 2023, and given that the band has such a deep shared history with each other, I found them to be the perfect candidates for the Soundtrack Of Our Lives.
What are you playing for the Friday night pre-game?
(Jason) “Making Flippy Floppy” by Talking Heads. At home, we crank it and dance around the kitchen. Great for shaking off the week and cutting loose.
What about a quiet Sunday morning?
(Jason) For the positive vibes, you can’t beat Bob Marley. No bad days start with his music coming through the speakers. The lesser known album Confrontation is epic.
Who is an artist that are you listening to that should be bigger?
(Dave) I’m listening to Unknown Mortal Orchestra. They remind me of Steely Dan, but with their own original stamp on what they do. I absolutely love them.
Which song directly influences a song by Magna Zero?
(Dave) I think our song “The Singularity” is directly influenced by not a song, but the band Porno For Pyros. One of the more representative tracks of theirs is “Tahitian Moon”.
What was the song you listened to in the 8th grade that you still listen to today?
(Chris) I was heavily into The Police as a kid and still listen to their albums often. It’s tough to pick one song, but I think my 8th grade self would go with “Invisible Sun” off of Ghost in the Machine. I alway dug the guitar solo at the end of the choruses.
(Dave) I still listen to the song “Chemistry” by Rush ever since probably before the 8th grade. I mean, I still listen to a ton of songs from that time, but “Chemistry” from Rush is special to me.
Are there any songs you love but don’t listen to very often?
(Jason) “Sorrow” by The National, from High Violet. It’s a sucker punch in all the right ways.
What’s the best cover you’ve heard?
(Chris) “No Quarter” by Tool. A good cover requires owning the song and putting your style on it, and Tool nailed it with this classic.
What is your guilty pleasure song?
(Jason) Whoodini’s “The Freaks Come Out At Night”. You can’t hear this and not crack a smile before proceeding with several robot dance moves. It’s a perfect reminder not to take myself so seriously.
Is there a track your friends have made that you wish to share?
(Jason) “Nectar” by April King (featuring Ferricia Fatia). April and I were bandmates a long time ago in a galaxy far away. She’s a beautiful soul and an amazingly talented vocalist/drummer. April and Ferricia slay this tune together.
What is your favorite track of Magna Zero’s that you’ve made?
(Chris) I honestly can’t pick a favorite track but I’m proud of “Behind the Sun”. Jason and Dave came up with this one on the fly in the studio. Jason didn’t have the vocals down yet, but he had a lyrical idea that resonated with me. The guitar work flowed out of that idea and was tracked quite quickly and easily.
(Dave) Wow, favorite track…HARD to say, I love them all. I would say “We Are All”, but, that could change next week. Haha!
Magna Zero is scheduled to release ‘The Great Nothing’ in early 2023, following several singles and music videos from the album. The band is currently writing material for their second album, performing at private events, and playing guerrilla shows in the Greater Los Angeles Area.