Nobide is a Boulder, CO based live electronic band who classify themselves enigmatically as “organic electronica.” Their new single “Wildin’ Out” was just released, so we decided to catch up with band founder Nick Vann to discuss their brand of music as well as what the future holds.
Listen to “Wildin’ Out”:
Nobide is an interesting name and doesn’t seem to hint at its meaning. Would you guys care to elaborate on your project name a bit?
The name Nobide originated in 2015 when I was reading an Eastern philosophy book. There was a chapter exploring what happens when we die, and a particularly poignant part of that suggested that as humans we shouldn't waste our time so that when we meet death we don't go full of regret. I wrote down in my journal ‘no biding time’ and the name sort of came to life. What's really cool and special to us is that Nobide isn't a word, so we get to totally shape and explore the concept and meaning.
What’s the origin tale of Nobide?
Nobide originated as my solo project in 2015. From inception, the focus has been on organic electronic music; walking the line between totally produced pieces and live recorded pieces. The fusion is where the magic happens; it's like you're human but not. Nobide continued to develop and expand into live performances as time moved forward. I was simultaneously studying at CU Boulder and created an independent study major called ‘sociomusicology’ which allowed for a more academic side of exploring with Nobide as well. For graduation, my thesis included the album Contrary To Popular Belief, a written exploration of the project, as well as a live performance of some of the songs. The thesis was the first time Nobide music was performed by a band, and within six months, the Nobide band as it lives now had settled into place. The members now include Nick Vann, Matt McElwain, Ted Kleist, and Tanner Fruit.
You classify yourselves as “organic electronica” and right out of the gate that sounds fun and interesting. Can you go into detail as to how you arrived at that classification and what that entails?
Organic electronic was kind of poking fun at Boulder's hyper-health conscious culture, but it really stuck and we think it's a great description of our sound. We're influenced by people like Lettuce, Snarky Puppy, Pretty Lights, Bassnectar, Bonobo, etc. and when describing their sound to others, ‘organic’ is often a term that pops up. We think it's a good description for our sound as we're very focused on bringing a sort of natural sound and texture to electronic music. The potentials of electronic music are incredible, but so much of it feels one-dimensional today. We're interested in maintaining a natural feel and sense of space/development in our recordings and live shows; not being tied to traditional instruments or to computers. It's an incredibly exciting place to be exploring. We can't wait to hear what we're making in two years, five years, ten years!
“Wildin’ Out” is a very eclectic mix of dance and live instrumentation - as could be suggested by your genre classification - and it makes me wonder, what is the writing process like for you guys? Do you start out all electronic and branch out to live instruments? Or go the live route and then add the electronic elements? Or something else altogether?
The writing process varies. As the band lineup still quite new, we don't have an established method of working. Most songs start as riffs or beats that I produce, then bring to the band. We're big fans of working out songs live. From the second we have an arrangement that's cohesive, we're playing it live and figuring out what works and what doesn't. It's a very iterative process. We'll write a new section, then discard it two weeks later after trying it out. We get together for practice and we'll jam one song for half an hour and find all sorts of new places to take it, and that's incredibly inspiring. As we move forward it seems everyone will be pretty involved with the production/writing processes. Matt and Ted are just learning to navigate the Ableton universe, so they'll be able to write more as well. What's especially killing about having an electronic heartbeat is that we can write wherever we are. We're heavily influenced by our travels and people we meet; to be able to put that right into sound is a huge opportunity for us.
Is “Wildin’ Out” a part of a full LP or EP, or is it specifically a single? Can we expect more to be released from Nobide soon?
‘Wildin' Out’ is just a single, but it's pretty definitive of the realm we're exploring. We do have several more releases slated for this year, and then LOTS for 2019. We're trying to be strategic about all of it and give each song/project the attention and care they deserve.
Looking at your past discography, it seems like you guys have been working hard for a few years on your craft. What’s in store for the future of Nobide?
The future of Nobide is really exciting. We really don't know what's going to happen, but we know we're on to something with this sound. We really just want to get deeper into exploring its potentials, possibilities, and crossovers with other art forms/mediums/artists. We're at a really exciting place as a band right now in that we're starting to get some attention, but we have no expectations yet. We've got a completely blank page we get to start with, which means we have lots of room to explore. At the end of the day, everybody wants more good music, and we want to be making some of the best organic electronic out there. So the immediate future for us looks like lots of time in the studio and lots of shows just working to be the best we can be.
Keep up with Nobide here.
All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.