Hard to believe, but it’s been nearly twenty years since Los Angeles rock band Orgy first brought us their unique blend of EDM, Electronica and Rock along with their iconic cover of New Order’s ‘Blue Monday’. The song catapulted the band into rock superstardom and spawned two more albums before the band went into a hiatus. Some good things come to an end but thankfully Orgy was not one. With a brand new line up, a new EP of fresh music out and massive touring plans, Orgy is ready to go full steam ahead and make 2016 a year to remember. Vocalist Jay Gordon talked with Examiner about rebuilding the band, making new music and what the future holds for them.
Examiner: “Let’s go back into the history a little bit and start at how Orgy kind of reinvented itself again. After the band had taken a break and was kind of inactive, the fans really got together and pushed for new music?”
Jay Gordon: “Yeah that was what was going on. A lot of the people wanted us to get back out there and start doing things. I felt like it wasn’t coming together with the now former members though, so what I had to do was just go forward. It turned out to be probably the wisest thing I could have done because now the band is killing it.”
E: “The former members had expressed some displeasure as they didn’t like the fact that you had a new line up and were using the “Orgy” name still.”
JG: “Using my own band’s name, the name I came up with for the licensing and everything? I mean they chose to handle it that way and came at me that way so…
E: “So that’s just whatever now, it’s in the past.”
JG: “Yeah I’m cool.”
E: “Did you feel like there were any expectations on you as to what people were thinking it would be like; was there some amount of pressure or were you more in the mindset of ‘I’m going do what I’m going to do and that’s it’?
JG: “Absolutely, I mean you know it was really hard to hook up with the old guys and all that. I really tried to make it as easy of a transition as possible. I even got a couple of guys in my band that the old guys got a long with. Obviously I wanted to do this as problem free as possible, but you know I should have known it wouldn’t go exactly that way.
For the fans, you know of course a lot of them are bummed. I mean you hate it when bands do stuff like this and get new members; but honestly it just wasn’t working out the other way. When you beat a dead horse for too long you either have to go to the next best thing or throw the whole thing you know? I didn’t want to let the band die and that’s what happened.”
E: “Right. If you look at a group like Slipknot, they got two new members and there were people who gave them s*** for it. They did what they had to do and felt was right to do and that’s all you really can do.
People seem to love the new music though. You released the ‘Talk Sick EP’ which came out last year. Musically it seems to contrast the older Orgy music. Is there a bit of a different direction on this one?”
JG: “Well it’s always been EDM with the rock stuff, and I had to learn to how to do all the Dubstep and Electrohouse and stuff like that to be able to incorporate that into the music. Orgy has always been about combining those elements and we stuck true to that. Hence the name, it’s a lot of different styles coming as one. One thing that is different with this band though is that everybody actually writes. Like the drummer writes vocals too and melodies, and his part and everybody writes, making it a group contribution.
E: “Word is that you were planning to release another EP shortly after? What’s going on with that?”
JG: “It’s probably going to expand from an EP to a full length record; it looks that way right now. I think that fans will get a lot of the elements that maybe they feel are missing, like from what it used to be. It’s a lot heavier but in a weird way like crazy energy.
E: “What would have been the reasoning behind doing two EP’s, to get the new music out and available more quickly?”
JG: “Yeah, I mean if you think about the length of time we had been gone and stuff like that, I kind of thought that would be better to get the record out. An EP is only like six songs or whatever which about half a record. People don’t really have the attention span anyway – at least I don’t – to listen to a full album. I don’t, my kid definitely doesn’t. So it’s like a lot of kids don’t have the attention to go through a full record. I think an EP is a little less egotistical from an artist’s perspective, you know?
E: “Yeah totally, there isn’t a whole lot for me to be able to go all the way through without skipping. Maybe like Slipknot’s ‘Volume 3’or ‘Blood For Blood’ by HELLYEAH.”
JG: “The only band I could really do it with maybe is like the Deftones or Prodigy. Maybe a Nine Inch Nails record; but that’s pretty much the end of it.
E: “You’re currently out on tour with Filter. What are some of the more memorable or favorite places that you’ve played?”
JG: “I love everywhere. There are just some places that are really good though like Jewel Nightclub in NH. I love playing anywhere in New York, like Irving Plaza or The Gramercy. The Whiskey A-Go-Go of course too because its home.”
E: “Do you find that there are mostly old Orgy fans coming out to see you or are there a lot of newer fans getting into it as well?”
JG: “I am finding that, and a lot of younger kids are gravitating towards it because of some of the guys that we’ve worked with like Sullivan King and a handful of other up and coming EDM producers that are really great. At first I did wonder if it was going to work or not because you know people get used to you being a certain way.
E: “What’s one of the most requested songs people ask you to play live?”
JG: “A lot of people want us to play ‘Slept So Long’ [from the movie Queen Of The Damned] which Jonathan Davis wrote and I sang on. It’s a really good song it’s just kind of weird to play live. It’s not like I wouldn’t be down to do half of it or something.”
E: “Blue Monday would have been my first guess but then again you probably always have to have that one on the set list because it’s iconic to the Orgy name now.”
JG: “Yeah we have to play that [laughs].
E: “Recently there was a photo posted to the band’s Facebook page of a video being shot. What song is that going to be for?”
JG: “That’s for the song Spells which is off ‘Talk Sick’. It’s pretty much done; they producers and the guys that did all the backgrounds just went back to the drawing board with a couple things.”
E: “What are Orgy’s plans for the rest of 2016?”
JG: “Getting the record mixed and finalized and picking the final songs. We’re feeling full length versus EP right now so it looks like it’s going to be that way. Then just touring and touring as much as we can, getting out there and letting people see the new band and killing it.”
You can pick up the ‘Talk Sick EP’ now, available everywhere. Check out Orgy live with Filter tomorrow night at the Middle East [downstairs] in Cambridge, MA.