California metalcore band Silent Planet have just released their new album Iridescent on Solid State Records, and if you dug the pre-release singles, you'll probably be very pleased with the full thing too. It really defies the genre, working in experimental electronics, atmospheric pop, and more, and still finding plenty of ways to be bone-crushingly heavy. If you want to get an even better idea of the music they were channelling on this LP, vocalist Garrett Russell and guitarist Mitch Stark made us a list of 10 songs that inspired the album, and it's a musically diverse list that includes Arca, Death Cab, mewithoutYou, Paramore, Anderson .Paak, System Of A Down, and more. Stream the album and read on for what the band had to say...

Tigran Hamasyan - "Levitation 21"

I am truly excited for those who haven’t heard Tigran yet. Every time I listen to his music, I’m always noticing something new. His most recent album The Call Within is honestly a masterpiece, and the track that really blew my mind is the daunting opener in 21/16 that is chock full of “wow” moments. His ability to build odd-metered or oddly-grouped structures within the music while always finding new ways to bring the main theme back into the picture is something that is very impressive to me and I spend a good deal of time trying to figure out ways of doing that within our music. You’re in for a real treat if you haven’t heard this before. [-Mitch]

My Epic - "Of Wilderness"

Our new album is about a 24 hour period back in 2019, when I tried to take my life while we were on a tour in Europe. After being apprehended by police in Belgium and brought to a mental hospital for evaluation, I traveled back to the United States feeling like a confused and broken shell of myself. On the trip home, I came across this song and listened to it on repeat. The song talks about a phenomenon that many may resonate with - getting lost to be found. He talks about the archetypal "wilderness" process of searching for answers and challenging pre-existing ideas. The lyric "I think we're all lost till we walk in the wilderness" sums up so much of what I was struggling with at the time, and what I hoped to convey with our new album. [-Garrett]

Arca - "Fugaces"

This whole album is amazing and to this day probably still the most undefinable music I’ve ever heard. This track in particular is one of my favorites, full of surreal sound design and bizarre (but beautiful) effected vocals. Listening to this album feels more like moving through an art installation than listening to “songs”. Since I discovered Arca via her production work on Bjork’s Utopia, I was immediately hooked. The attention to detail in terms of the mix and sounds is astounding. Some of the more otherworldly sounds and textures in her music were a huge influence on my approach to certain segments on the album. [-Mitch]

Loathe - "Aggressive Evolution"

Mitch turned me onto this band a couple years ago. As a band, we've enjoyed the way that Loathe pushes the boundaries of heavy music, somehow moving seamlessly between hardcore, metal, atmospheric rock, and even (maybe) reggaeton. The song title is so fitting, because the song eschews conventions of the genre and rejects normal -core tropes to make something that feels truly inspired. More often than not, our band has found most of our inspiration outside of the "metalcore" umbrella we are most frequently associated with. With Loathe, we see how they've channeled some of our similar influences with approaches we had yet to consider. [-Garrett]

Death Cab for Cutie - "Title and Registration"

Transatlanticism has always been my favorite album - going back to the age of 15. But this song gained a new meaning for me as I learned how to play it on guitar in preparation for our video shoot of "Terminal" - which is the first Silent Planet song to have me playing guitar. I am still far from a competent guitar player, but my bandmates have encouraged me to expand my contributions to the band and helped me to avoid the typical pitfalls that challenge a novice musician. I'm sure they are sick of hearing me play this song every day, but they've been nothing but kind and positive to me in my journey. [-Garrett]

mewithoutYou - "The Soviet"

Aaron Weiss' musical story-telling has always been second to none, in my opinion. His use of imagery to convey deeper emotional experiences inspired me for this album in particular, as this was our first record that I wrote primarily from my own perspective. Whenever I felt uninspired or found myself reaching for the low-hanging fruit, I'd go for a run and listen to Catch For Us the Foxes and feel myself pulled back to a mystical reality where even the most unassuming objects, situations, and creatures are teeming with meaning. This song forever changed my life when I was 18, and it continues to do so at 31. [-Garrett]

Scarypoolparty - "Black Cross"

Another song that is more like a journey than any sort of clearly structured piece. Think of a beautiful orchestral moment in a Miyazaki film that quickly turns into an electronic, Matrix-esque goth rave. It rides the line of “complex-enough-for-a-music-nerd” and “never-over-the-top”, two things that can be difficult to navigate skillfully (there’s some wild stuff on the piano in the verses.) The entire album is gold but this song’s energy and mysterious persona were particularly influential to us while we were writing and recording Iridescent. As of writing this we have actually become friends with Alejandro and are continually blown away by everything he releases. A true one-in-a-million talent. [-Mitch]

Paramore - "Pool"

As we were writing this album, I discovered a serious love for Hayley Williams’ lyricism - especially in After Laughter and recent solo work. The influence of Aaron Weiss on Hayley's writing is apparent - and I love that he has a feature on the record. It might seem like a shallow reason to love the song (bad pun), but the beginning of this track resembles a pool for me - if that makes any sense - and the flow of the song, coupled with key production elements, all buoyed (I'm sorry) the experience. This song speaks on the risk of love and second chances - and our record Iridescent is, in many ways, about the same thing. [-Garrett]

Anderson .Paak - "Come Down"

There’s a point in every album where I get writer's block. Several, if I'm being completely honest. I found myself in a bit of a creative rut when someone showed me the Tiny Desk performance for this song… and the joy of this performance sorta unlocked something in me. (I could also say the same thing for the Blood Orange Tiny Desk as well!) I still find myself turning back to other tracks of his when I’m looking for a hopeful spark. [-Garrett]

System of a Down - "Needles"

Every day, as we left the studio in North Hollywood, we'd blast SOAD and dodge traffic all the way back to my lil apartment in Pasadena. Honestly I could've chosen several songs from Toxicity - because we'd blast this record and jam out. It became our sort of post-studio palette cleanse ritual, probably because this record has been burned in all of our brains since we were 12 or something. And this record will always bring me back to north LA, and vice versa. There's actually a song on our record "Alive, As a Housefire" that had received a strong degree of SOAD influence with regard to vocal delivery... especially in the end.


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