Zero Theorem are taking the world by storm with their release today, Ataraxis. This has been a journey for the group, starting off with the sending of digital files between Caesar and Joe Scarlotti, who are cousins. Eventually they made the necessary accommodations to play in person, eventually creating the demo’s and building the band that is now Zero Theorem.
“Euthanize” kicks off the EP with ferocity and booming vocals, giving a clear sense on what will the sound will consist of. The riffs are groovy, swaying through the progressions with a focused assault. “Rorschach” is a winding track with a wonderful psychological political message louder than the cataclysmic instrumentation. The title-track starts off in a softer spot but swells to the heaviest hitting track on the record with the emotional weight ringing through the song’s vocal approach.
The group is rocking the world with their thunderous, cataclysmic sound. Their progressions have a taint of sludge to them, but move with plenty of weight. Ataraxis is a collection of six songs that are interwoven with thematic elements, sonically creating a massive debut. New Noise Magazine was pleased to sit down and chat with Caesar of Zero Theorem, discussing elements of the EP, the meaning of Ataraxis and the music video for “Area.”
What are the feelings in your camp now that the EP is being released? It’s been a long time coming.
It feels great to have the material fully produced and share the results with a wider audience. We’ve reached a point as a team that makes us even more excited to perform and keep writing music. A lot of hard work went into this and we’re excited to share it and perform the songs live.
After relocating and then finding new members, how did songs transform or take on new skins from the initial demos?
After conferring with the new members and working in the studio, the demos found new life. Each song underwent some restructuring and benefited from the additional input. Experimenting with different melodies, sounds, and textures helped to reshape and realize our initial vision. The songs really came together once we rounded out the band.
“Rorschach” has a political feel to it, that was the intent – correct?
Yes, it’s a psychological commentary on political discourse, but it’s also a challenge to anyone being overly sanctimonious.
What is the meaning of the EP title Ataraxis, and how did that tie together the thematic elements of the songs?
Ataraxis may be defined as the absence of mental stress or anxiety. It signifies peace of mind. For us, the art is about an experience of catharsis and contemplation. Each song deals with the struggle in life to find meaning and one’s authentic self. The EP’s title track is about the impossibility of perfection and finding comfort in another way.
How was creating the music video for “Area” and what all went into it?
We were thrilled to work with Brian Cox of Flarelight Films here in LA. The song is about the importance of one’s identity and will. Every meaningful relationship, environment, or belief-system carries with it the potential to experience this basic struggle anew. The video depicts some of the isolation, disorientation, and danger associated with a journey of self-discovery. It was filmed in the Arizona desert, which helped to create an otherworldly feel. Brian did a great job with it.
Tough question, but what’s your favorite song or moment on the EP?
The title track, “Ataraxis” – is uniquely special to us given its lyrical content, pace, time signatures, and instrumentation. Since the beginning of the band, we’ve talked about our desire to encompass a range of emotions and musical styles, including moodier or more atmospheric pieces. When the song hits its apex, that’s a special moment for us. “Becoming” is also special and will be our next single.