Alternative shoegaze band Quali has released their new album, When The Dark Presses, on California indie label It’s Okay I’m Crying. The album has a thematic through-line of experiences with episodes of sleep paralysis. “I tried to write about the feelings that I had during these experiences, and tried to make sense of why they were happening,” explains vocalist Isaiah Nery. “There’s definitely a stream of consciousness approach to the lyrics that doesn’t always make sense, even to me. But at the same time, I felt that that’s what needed to come out and there’s comfort in that for me. I tried to structure the instrumental part of the songs in the same way, where I looked for the feeling in texture, timing, and placement.”
This style of approach is evident on the album’s lead single, “Eraser“, a grungy alt-pop track that embraces the 90s aesthetics of acts like Sonic Youth or more modern revivalists Diiv. “Eraser is about a sleep paralysis entity that I believe lives in my closet,” says Nery. “Weirdly enough, I recorded all the vocals for this album in that closet.“
Indeed, the band recorded the eight-track noise pop album at home, but that wasn’t always the plan. “This album was recorded by us, on our own, during the height of the pandemic out of passion and necessity,” explains Nery. “We originally scheduled to record this album with a friend and engineer, in his studio in April of 2020 but the world stopped and so did that plan didn’t work out. We bought some gear, that we would later return after using, to record the drums, bass, and guitar in our practice space. And then I recorded the vocals in my walk-in closet.“
When The Dark Presses is now available across all major streaming platforms. Listen to “Eraser” on Spotify or watch a live version the band performed as part of the Half Way Home Sessions on YouTube below.
Quali was started in 2013 by Isaiah Nery in Los Angeles. He spent the next 2 years writing and recording all of the instruments for their debut release, The Familiar and the Other (2015). After moving to San Diego, Nery recruited friends to help with live performances. In 2017, the band released their second album, Awaken The Quietus.
Since then, Quali has played with bands like Duster, A Place to Bury Strangers, Horse Jumper of Love, Wild Honey, Mint Field, Memory Leak, and many more. With a loud, fuzzed-out wall of sound guitars, ethereal, ambient, and spaced-out dynamics held together with laggy pocket grooves, Quali creates a sound familiar, inspired by the pioneers of shoegaze and post-rock, but is uniquely its own.
Quali is celebrating the album release with a release show tonight at The Whistlestop in San Diego.
Isaiah Nery, Glendon Romett, Sean Maristela, Josue Galarza
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