Progressive rock band Cog is gearing up to tour the nation. With a formidable live energy set to rock venues around Australia, drummer Lucius Borich took some time to chat to FasterLouder about the band’s new release, The Sound of Three – 12 Years With You. As well as what the last dozen years with Cog has been like, juggling new projects and why this tour somehow feels like their last.
How does it feel to have been with us as a group for over a decade?
12 years is a long time to be in a working project, that’s for sure. It’s been a big and great part of my life. I’ve learnt so much, had so many good and not so good experiences, but overall I’m really happy that I’ve been in a band that has made, as far as I’m concerned, some meaningful musical statements.
Did this release come about as a display of your epic live gigs and how much you love the live circuit?
There were a few factors that made this DVD come about. One was that we had so much film material floating around. Something had to be done with it all. It would have been a shame if nothing was done – there is a 12 year story to tell. From live footage to interviews, photos, handy cams etc.
When the record company came to me with the idea I thought it was great. Cog has been on a so-called break or hiatus. A break I never considered was relevant to where I was at with the Cog project. A brake that I never really agreed to, but just had to cop. So that’s why I got on board with the DVD project and was excited to help put it all together.
What is your all time favourite venue to play in Australia?
I just like to play, just as long as the vibe is there with the other band members you’re on stage with. You can make any venue rock hard and come alive if you all give it everything. But I’ll pop in the Big Day out main stage in front of 30-thousand people, that’s not bad!
Are you pumped about your upcoming tour and can you give us a hint as to who some of the special guests supporting the shows will be?
Yes pumped, you bet! Cog has hardly done any shows in the past eight months, so I’m stoked to be playing Cog shows for sure!
The Butterfly Effect will be playing a few shows with us on this tour which will be fun. Zeke’s [ex Mammal band member, Ezekiel Ox] new band Over-Reactor will be showcasing as well.
Were there any bands you gained inspiration from you when you formed Cog back in ‘98?
I remember listening to a lot of Bjork, Jeff Buckley, Pink Floyd, Deftones and Soundgarden. Some of those bands were putting out new music at the time and that was like a soundtrack to what was going on around me. I guess just knowing and hearing other people making cool records can give you the urge to try and make your own.
And which up and coming bands today do you reckon are the ones to watch?
In Australia, I’d say Dead Letter Circus. I love listing to those guys, they write great songs. I’ve played a few shows on drums with them too which has been fun – they’ll go a long way.
I’ll throw this one in as well, and that’s my new project called Floating Me. We should have an album out by the end of the year! It’s with some of the members from a band people might remember back in the late 90’s called, Scary Mother, who were awesome. Plus Jon Stockman, the bass player from Karnivool is in the mix too! I’m very much looking forward to putting it out, touring it and showing people what Floating Me has to offer.
Is it true that Flynn actually decided to train his own voice to do vocals for the band, as all the submissions you received by eager singers were deplorable?
Yes, it’s a fact that he practiced singing and playing guitar because we couldn’t find anyone that suited the band. But that doesn’t mean all the submissions were crap. Some of the singers went on to do great things and are in big bands now. That’s all in the DVD!
What is your favourite track to perform live?
The longer tracks are fun just because they go through so many sections and it can be a challenge to make it work well. I don’t really have a favourite song to play, they all have something cool about them when it comes to playing them live.
What’s the most awesome thing about being a part of Cog?
I think just being able to create your own music and then playing it live is very cool. The fact that people turn up and really like it is awesome. I’ve got a lot to be thankful for!
Do you think heavy rock/ metal and progressive rock genres are becoming more accessible, especially in Australia?
It’s definitely reaching more and more people in Australia. If it could get to the mainstream, it would open up big time. I feel that people who are more tuned into the mainstream would really like the progressive rock sound, if they had the chance to experience it.
Who is predominantly in charge of writing the lyrics?
In Cog we all try and put in ideas when it comes to the lyrics and what we’re singing about, it’s never been one member only doing the lyrics. But Flynn has to sing the songs at the end of the day so he has to make sure it feels right for him. In the end process he’ll shape what works best for him from what we’ve all contributed.
What’s next on the horizon for Cog?
After this DVD release and tour that is coming up there’s nothing, nothing at all on the Cog calendar, which is a shame. I’ll be playing these shows and songs like it’s the last time I’ll ever play them again.