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Rating: 9/10

 
For Fans Of: Receiving End Of Sirens, Scary Kids Scaring Kids, 10 Years
 
NAVA is a ambient/alternative rock duo from Phoenix, Arizona. Comprised of Chad Crawfordand (ex. Scary Kids Scaring Kids) and Hiram Hernandez. They have just released their debut EP Daybreak on June 19th and is available on iTunes/Amazon/Spotify/Bandcamp.

 

The Daybreak EP is a skilfully crafted tasting of tracks that’s filled with lush soundscapes and flowing harmonies. These guys play with emotion and dynamic and equally value the the power of a whisper as well as a scream.
 
The EP opens with “Something Better,” a track that bursts open the album within the first 30 seconds before coming to a subdued pulse to highlight the vocal harmony on the verses. The chorus explodes into a syncopated tidal wave of sound.
 
Track 2, “Stranger Than Fiction,” is a whirlwind of harmonious vocals and hefty drums and really highlights the guitar work throughout the song with upper-range riffs binding the pieces together.  I find this track is the one getting the most plays from my library. The different layers of the track work seamlessly to give you a different experience each time you listen to it.
 
“Fight The Flood” speaks about tragedy (see interview below) and has a great Receiving End Of Sirens feel to it. The call-and-response vocals carry through the chorus, then the fury is unleashed at about 3 minutes in to take the track to a whole ‘nother level and wash it all away.
 
The ominous interlude track “Ascending” leads us right into “Broken Body” with features mechanized drum beats with a fantastic interlude/outro that will knock you right on your ass while you’re singing along to the “Woah, Oh” in the final seconds.
 
The band was kind enough to do a little interview with AmpKicker about the new EP. Lets meet the band:
 
Intro – Name, role in the band:
 
Chad Crawford and Hiram Hernandez. We both play guitar and Hiram sings.
 
What does the band name ‘Nava’ mean to you? How did you decide on the name?
 
There are a few different definitions of the name NAVA, a couple being “beautiful” and “the sound of music”. With the band being only Hiram and myself it was pretty quick to decide on a name compared to a group of five or six. Trying to get everyone on the same page was sometimes a challenge.
 

You guys took a DIY approached to producing the album and the result is amazing. Do you think things would have came out differently if you have gone into a professional studio or had a producer? Did you feel any additional pressure having full control of the process?
 
(Chad)
Things could have turned out much different if we went with a producer. Some people hear things a different way and the outcome could’ve completely changed. We wanted to make sure the first thing people hear from us is completely 100% us and our creation.
There was actually much less pressure doing it this way for us being our first release. We took our time and made sure everything was perfect. No time restrictions. We were living together, writing and recording in our basement for over a year.
 
(Hiram)
I don’t know about less pressure for me. Because everything was at our fingertips and we had no “real” deadline for ourselves. Saying “that’s a wrap” on these songs was really hard to do. When you have no one telling you “that’s probably good enough”, it gets really hard to say…. “Well this is good enough”.
 
What is the emotion/meaning behind the title and song ‘Fight The Flood’?
 
(Hiram)
Fight the flood was actually a song I wrote when I was 17 in my garage with my best friend at the time. It was going to be used for one of my old bands and then for a long time it was just buried. This song was actually the last one to make it to the ep. I’d always wanted to use it again so I brought it up to Chad and he was down. So, we re-wrote a lot of it and now that’s what you hear.
 
The song is about the tsunami that hit India in 2005. We were just sitting and talking about how devastating that must have been and how much destruction these people had to see. The song is about crying out to God when you feel you have nothing left.
 
There was mention on your facebook page about a music video for Something Better. What can you tell us about the video? When will it be released?
 

We did record a music video a while back for “Something Better”. We decided to hold off on releasing that…for now.
 
Who are your biggest musical influences?
 
The one and only, Justin Timberlake.
 
What is your first musical memory? (first album bought, first band you got into, stuff your parents played for you)
 

(Chad)
I remember getting my first CD, Alanis Morissette – Jagged Little Pill. Still one of my favorite CDs. First song I learned on guitar, Blink 182 – Dammit.
 
(Hiram)
Oh man! When I was a young kid a lot
“Crazy” shit happened to me. So, in short, I have a very vivid recolection of my child hood.
My grandmother would sing me a song called “el ratóncito Miguel” I think those might have been my first words haha.
Either that or when my dad was taking me out to get a pair of rattlesnake boots and I heard enter sandman in the car. I might have been 3??
 

When did you decide to start playing an instrument (or becoming a vocalist) and why?
 
(Chad)
My first instrument was the piano. Been playing since I was about 7. I started playing guitar when I was 12 and from the second I started playing each, I knew those would be something that would be with me for the rest of my life.
 
(Hiram)
Its kind of a funny story how I started playing. My uncle was moving into a new house when I was about 10 and put one of his guitars at my house for me to play. Always messed around with it but didn’t ever really learned much. Around that same time, I went on my usual summer trip to Miami to visit my family. When I came back home, much to my surprise, MY MOM HAD THROWN THE GUITAR AWAY! Bummed is an understatement for how I felt then.
Then, Christmas came along. My uncle surprised me with a guitar. He told me I was getting an encyclopedia or something haha. I have literally never stopped since. I was 11.
 
As far as singing goes,
I still don’t consider myself a singer. It’s just kind of something that happened for us as a band. We were tired of looking across the country to find someone we probably weren’t going to be 100 percent satisfied with anyway. I mean, there’s only 1 JT.
 

Top 5 albums of all time:
 
(Chad)
Alanis Morissette – “Jagged Little Pill”
Justin Timberlake – “20/20 Experience”
The Juliana Theory – “Love”
Blindside – “Silence”
Nirvana -”Nevermind”
 
(Hiram)
(This answer is always changing)
As of right now, the list goes.
Nirvana- “Nevermind”
Incubus-”Morning View”
Metallica- “Ride the lightning”
“Alanis Morrisette – “Jagged Little Pill”
Jt- “20/20 Experience”
Dang me and Chad have really got similar tastes haha.
 
Shout out: What are some other bands people should be keeping an eye on?
 
The Beets
And the band who does those insurance commercials.
 
What’s next for NAVA?
 
Right now for NAVA we are just trying to play as much as we can and get our name out there. We are still writing and recording and trying to get more music out in the next couple months. So keep an eye out.
Plus we’re going to be announcing we’re lesbians soon so, there’s that.
 


 
Haha! Thanks so much for taking the time, guys! We really love the EP and it will be in regular rotation here at AmpKicker. We can’t wait to hear what’s next!

 
http://wearenava.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/WEARENAVA/

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