Kiwi boys Sons Of Zion have arrived back from touring USA and Australia. We caught up with Rio ahead of their nationwide tour of New Zealand.
How would you describe your music? As I feel like people assume you’re reggae but there’s so many different elements to your music.
Our music today is the most honest its ever been. We started off making reggae or pop reggae but have naturally evolved into what we are doing today. We don’t really have a formula or a goal now when we write and create, it is truly just a matter of making music that we are digging and we hope others are feeling it to.
What was the process like for ‘Vantage Point’? Like from writing to recording to the release, how was it for you?
The process was longer than i wanted it to be, some of the songs on the album are about 3 years old. I think its hard to balance family, recording, writing and releasing and then touring the world on top of that. Probably something else that we are really bad at is trying to get things ‘perfect’ and we need to be able to accept songs much faster and just
put them out to the world instead of trying to reinvent the wheel with every track haha.
The album seems to have such a positive, summer-like feel to it. Did you intend it to be that way or did it just work out that way?
I like to think all the boys are positive by nature so maybe that comes across in the album, we definitely didn’t sit down and try our best to make a positive summer vibe album but i’m super stoked it has naturally formed that way.
The cover art is so bright and geometric. Where did the idea for that come from? I see the ladder as a way of climbing to the “Vantage Point”.
Spot on sis, the artwork is reflective of elevation. If you check out the hardcover album there are pictures of hot air balloons, staircases, birds etc. It all goes with the theme of striving for better.
‘Vantage Point’ is doing so well, did you expect it to do that well? Or do you just release it and not worry too much about that?
I think its foolish to expect anything, i think a better word for it would be hopeful. We definitely take our craft seriously and we do try and put our best foot forward in everything we do, from the studio to the stage. So yeah, we hope for the best and we know that as long as we are true and real to ourselves then the outcome is already positive.
‘Drift Away’ is clearly a great track that people enjoy. You’ve just released ‘So Bright’ from the album as the next single. Was it hard to choose a follow-up single or did you just know that would definitely be the next one?
It was definitely hard to choose the next single. Because we put so much effort into every song we are truly proud of all of them and we could have gone with any of them and been happy. I guess it came down to what story we could build around the next single, and how we wanted people to see us as a group. So Bright is again something different
for the public and for new fans who have just joined us since Drift Away, i think its a great song to let those people know who we are and what we are about.
The video for ‘Drift Away’ is beautifully shot and definitely reflects the track really well. Do you have any more videos coming up or is it just focusing on the tour at the moment?
We sure do 🙂 We are in the final stages of the So Bright video right now.
Tour! You guys have been to the US, Australia and now you’re back home! The NZ tour kicks off this week, are you excited?
So excited! Home is the best! We’ve missed home so much and we really want to give back to the people that have put us on, and thats kiwis! We love NZ and we’re proud of our heritage and culture. Its good to be back!!
You’re playing smaller places like Tauranga, Dunedin and even heading up north to Kerikeri! Is it important for you to try get to those smaller, less-visited areas?
100% important. The grass roots is where its at and many of our smaller communities are the ones that have loyally showed out for the boys since day 1.
Can you tell us anything about the show or is it going to have to be a surprise?
Energy is going to be through the roof hehe ill tell ya that much.
What music do you (and the guys) listen too?
We all have different musical tastes and i think it comes from our backgrounds, we’re all from different parts of the country and our parents we’re all into different music. We are really open minded musos to, we literally listen to everything.
What is something you would like people to know about you (or Sons of Zion)?
That we are grateful for every single person who has streamed/bought a song, purchased a ticket, told a friend about us, followed us on socials. You literally keep my dream alive and i’m grateful for you all.
Tickets are still available to see Sons Of Zion kill it. Head HERE to purchase tickets.
Interview conducted by Art & Photography by Shelley Te Haara