By Will Yannacoulias
Photo by Little Jack Films
“Another World” is the second single from Wishbook, a ponderous, gloomy guitar & synth project started by Steve Leidal and Zoe Saladana. Originally bandmates playing behind Moose Jaw singer-songwriter Drake Mark, the two began jamming and writing together after Leidal shared some of his original demos with Saladana. “Another World” follows the debut single “The Mission”, both sparsely arranged experimental synth pop tunes, driven by instantly familiar drum machine beats and bubbling bass, over which yearning guitar and keyboard melodies weave in and out of Leidal’s soft, world-weary vocals. A new band emerging with a distinct sound and style, we were excited for Leidal to introduce us to the story behind the songs.
“The band’s sound stems from a collection of demos I had been sitting on and eventually showed to Zoe” Leidal recalled when asked about the early days of Wishbook. “The demos were all drum machines, cheap synths and Wurlitzer keyboard, laid down on my own. When I showed the demos to Zoe her spacious, understated, melodic playing style fit perfectly. Initially I was pretty apprehensive about putting the material out, but Zoe really got behind it, and the more material we put together the more excited we both got about it.”
Both singles are self produced by Leidal and Saladana, employing a roomy, open mix that imbue the songs with a patient contemplative feel. “Between the two of us we can track all the instruments ourselves“ Leidal shared, “so we figured why not- we know the sound we’re looking for and can learn a few things along the way.” Nine additional tracks are in various stages of completion, awaiting vocals or final mixing before release.
When asked about Wishbook‘s next chapter, Leidal expressed his excitement for future releases, live performances and working with more musicians. “We’re just focusing on keeping the ball rolling, getting out and playing live more. Eventually we’d love to expand the group to include a couple more real humans, to better replicate our recordings when performing live. We plan to release an album sometime this summer, we’ve just got to lay down some additional vocals and mix the remaining tracks. We’d released the last two songs as soon as they were finished up, mainly as a way to just get the ball rolling with the project. We want to get it out there and let people know what we’re doing and hear our sound.”