We’ve been following Ryan Daly and Parade of Lights since the start. Since the first song of the project saw the light of day we were instantly hooked. It’s hard to believe that “We’re The Kids” hit digital streaming services four years ago. What followed was an amazing debut album in 2015 with Feeling Electric. After that, there’s a familiar story.
Band does well but not amazing. Label movement happens. Business decisions get made and what was supposed to be a sophomore album turns into an EP.
Specifically, for Parade of Lights there’s probably a lot more to it than that, but things are where they are regardless. Daly and his bandmates, drummer Anthony Improgo and keyboardist Michelle Ashley are moving forward with their new EP Human Condition Pt. 2 as an independent after getting dropped by their label a few months ago. The first part of a two-part album was released by the label earlier this year.
Familiar story or not, 2017 and 2018 were trying times for Ryan Daly and PoL. Alternative Addiction recently sat down and chatted with Daly about writing Human Condition (both parts) and making the video for their song “Tangled Up” by themselves.
“At first, we didn’t really know what it was about,” said Daly about Human Condition in the interview. “The more we chipped away at the demos, the concept began to become a little clearer. We didn’t decide to call it Human Condition until the very end. I think the first album is a little brighter and a little more joyous. There’s still some of that here, but I think it’s different. There are some darker themes. The lyrics are more serious. I think that’s a natural progression; at first, everything is celebratory and then you even out and you start thinking about everything. You start thinking about the challenges and the life cycle of everything. It’s something that everyone experiences, all those emotions and peaks and valleys that everyone goes through that make us human. That’s what most of the record is about.”
This wasn’t the typical creation process for a band. With music these days, some of us pay attention to release dates intensely, but even then, some stuff falls through the cracks. It seems like half the time we know what’s coming and then when Friday comes and the release radar on Spotify is updated and there’s two to three things posted that you didn’t expect to see there. That’s what happened with PoL on Human Condition. The songs might pop up instantaneously for us, but there’s a lot of work behind them.
“We started writing it in 2016 and slowly but surely wrote it. Then, the label wanted us to work with a producer, so we worked with Carlos de la Garza. We recorded most of the demos for the album at our studio in Santa Anna. Then, we did most of the real tracking at Carlos’ place which is in Eagle Rock. We recorded drums at East West and we recorded the remaining of the drums at Capital in Studio A. It was an awesome experience. We wrapped it up a while ago though. I think it was finished a little over half way through the end of 2017 and it’s finally coming out at the end of 2018.”
Daly has produced other bands and projects during his music tenure. Really, he does that more than Parade of Lights, that’s why it was surprising to hear that the band worked with an outside producer for Human Condition. Daly explained the motivation behind working with Garza on the EPs and how great he thought the music turned out because of it.
Read Part Two