Wilderado is a band composed of two Texans and two Oklahomans. They met in Los Angeles in 2015, recorded several songs and have been on the road ever since playing them for people.
Vocals and echoes dance with the songs to create huge and loud bridges. Inspired by classic and alternative rock, Wilderado unites the power of the new rock generation with intense moments that fits perfectly to a live show. In November, Nacione™ Loud Towns presents Maxim Reiner, lead singer and guitarist from Wilderado.
01. Let’s talk about the process of creating music. We want to know about your inspirations. Who are your idols and your heroes? There is some influence from other music genres?
[Maxim Rainer] Listening to my mom sing in church and having a father who was a big of three dog night fan, I grew up with harmonies in my ears. as far as songs go, Chris Martin, Noel Gallagher, and Stephan Jenkins all had a big impact on me. It wasn’t until later in my life that I made cool friends and was introduced to the Beatles, Nirvana, Nick Drake, Elliot Smith, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. More than anything I love the words people write. I love the idea of lyrics and how complicated it can be to have such a small amount of space to deliver what it is you have to say. I am the most inspired when a melody carries a perfect series of words to an impactful idea.
02. Tell us a little about your creative process to write your songs or produce your music. We notice that your songs like “You Don’t Love Me” and “Morning Light” have a nice flow where each instrument starts on a very precise time. How do you guys define each part of a cool song to not make them like overdressed and full of effects?
[Maxim Rainer] You Don’t Love me and Morning Light were a lot different in the way they came about. I had the lines and melody for the chorus in You Don’t Love Me, but not much else. The arrangement and dynamics centered around the theme in the chorus. The bass in those first two choruses stays on the B, which sets that last chorus up to feel really huge when it finally follows the progression down the E. We all love a big pay off in a song, it doesn’t always work but the more tension you can set up in certain areas the better the release feels. The instrumentation in all of our songs is a component of the theme. We’re always paying attention to what shouldn’t be there, what’s too much and distracting and how we can best support each specific moment.
Morning Light was a country song I wrote a long time ago to a shuffle about 20 beats faster than how we eventually recorded it. In high school, I was in love with a girl whose dad was a race car driver and they shared a lot of great country music with me out on the lake a couple of summers. I went to college and it was one of the first times I felt that pain of leaving someone, so I wanted it to feel like those songs we used to listen to. Several years later I showed the guys and we decided to put those guitars hits in. The “ooh’s” felt so good slow over the top of those big guitars that we decided to take it another direction. When we approached the chorus it made the most sense to let everything but the idea rest. I’ve always loved what that song became. It feels like two parts of my life formed their own moment.
03. We understand that the music industry nowadays is now way different from the past. What is the best thing about today and the worst? What is the role of streaming platforms for artists?
[Maxim Rainer] DIY recording changed a lot. It’s a cool time to be a songwriter because you don’t have to rely on anyone to get your music heard. At the same time, the streaming world is highly saturated making it harder than ever to be found and even harder to have more than a couple songs listened to. My favorite thing about streaming is the ability to reach anyone. The worst part is you don’t make any money unless you have massive hits and everyone is always trying to get you to write massive hits. But who cares? At the end of the day either you can express ideas and finish songs or you can’t. If you can, you get to share them with people. I try not to think past that.
04. Tell us the experience of recording a song. There is too much influence on production or your songs come up to life right when you are composing or jamming? We are curious to understand the process to create songs like “Siren” and “Wheat”, for example.
[Maxim Rainer] We try and think of recording as the final component of writing the song. There is no thought past what is best for what the song is trying to do or say. It’s all about mood and capturing the emotion as best you can. We find the impactful moments and record the song in a way that best suits those moments. The key for us to be specific with each moment and figures out how it should live. Siren has massive moments in it. I love big moments. I love the end of “Vindicated” by Dashboard or the choruses in “The Immortals” by Kings of Leon. Every song can’t have that, but when we have a song that does, we want it to do what we want... be huge.
Wheat is more of a continuation. The drums and bass are the songs. We built up around those components and made sure each part had a purpose. I met my wife, she was instantly it for me, so the lyrics were easy. We used to have these late, inebriated nights in this old house in latigo canyon north of Malibu where we would play out these moments for way too long, having a blast and being stupid. I started singing that chorus line for some reason and the rest of our buddies started hollering it back. There were probably six of us screaming it. That canyon must have hated us.
05. Does any city inspire your music? How does the city’s musical scene contribute to the creative process?
[Maxim Rainer] I think cities inspire us, if only because they are where you are. I can’t say I will be in Washington and start thinking about Tulsa and need to express my love or admiration for it. But I know lots of people do! Maybe one day it’ll happen to me. I am inspired by Tulsa in general, as well as the timeless music that has come out of my city. The thing that inspires me most about Tulsa is how much it supports its artists. there are so many good bands and incredible musicians living and playing in Tulsa and for Tulsa, really.
We started the band in Los Angeles and half of us still live there, so I’ll always love that town, as well. I think what’s most important is to live somewhere that lets you be yourself, but also to live somewhere that challenges you to understand what that is instead of distracting you with what’s glorified and popular. There are so many awesome towns in this country. I wish more people had the ability to choose which was best for them.
06. For you guys, what is the power of music?
[Maxim Rainer] The power of music is the act of listening. We listen and understand, feel, let go, stay. Even as a songwriter and performer it’s my job to listen. The more I try to force things to say, the worse it is. I think the best songs were heard by the writer and fully understood. The best live bands are listening to each other so well that they speak at the same time, they’re truly together.
You never see two people who listen to each other well have a hard time getting along. People come together at shows and pay attention to something other than themselves and it has a legitimate impact on them. Our culture doesn’t want to listen, we want to speak. Music happens to be pleasing to our ears, but I think the magic of it comes when we’re paying attention and really listening.
07. Explain the reason why you selected the songs in your playlist (playlist below).
[Maxim Rainer] These are songs that have influenced me both lyrically, musically and sonically.
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