How did you all meet and start writing together?
“This band was all on the fly.”
Current members of the band were one day practicing in the drumming room, started jamming, and realized they could make something out of this. In the beginning, the band had members come and go, but no hard feelings. Guitarist Andrew Garces reached out to now former member, Max Marcy and got lunch with vocalist/guitarist Rylan Mortensen in Sadler dining hall. After that, they went to go get Rylan’s guitar and ran into former member, Luke and drummer, Jimmy. Rylan reached out to Kyle Bierne about playing bass, and they all knew they had something special from the get-go.
What is your writing process?
“We’re all songwriters. By the time we are done with a song, it feels like everyone’s song.”
The band originally threw around song ideas and gravitated towards Rylan’s original songs. Now, they have been more recently writing about stories. I love the story behind the song “Flowerheads.” They just saw a painting on a wall and are already writing a story around it! Teams of two members also pitch ideas to the group and see where that takes them. They are still learning about what everyone prefers individually in terms of songs, but usually they compose a form/structure and Rylan adds lyrics on top of it. One day they started jamming, and wrote “West of the Bedroom.”
What are some of your inspirations?
“The group has diverse personal interests, but we all know what gets eachother going.”
The members of Settle for Sadler are constantly sharing music with each other. As a whole, the group is heavily influenced by Death Cab for Cutie. Some more musical inspirations include Alt-J, Foster the People, and American Football. Rylan mentioned that he specifically is influenced by Jeff Buckley.
What is most important when writing music together?
“It’s still a learning process because we’re still learning how to communicate with one another.”
Settle for Sadler’s writing philosophy is centered around a collective perspective. They look at saying no to an idea as a positive part of the writing process, because it paves the way to new ideas that the whole group is satisfied with. Jimmy says that if one person doesn’t like the song, they won’t put the effort into it, and he’s absolutely right. Have you ever been forced to learn a song you didn’t like in choir? Every time you had to sing it, it was brutal. The guys are really conscious of how everyone feels about every decision, and this is a crucial aspect of their cohesive sound.
Have any rituals/traditions?
“We’ll all hang out with no intention of doing music, but then one of us comes up with an idea and we’ll all hop on.”
Settle for Sadler’s traditions are like that of any close friend group. They have movie nights, and a lot of the time they end up writing music together with no prior intention of playing music at the time. It’s this genuine passion and love for what they do that shines through in their catchy tunes.
How has studying SRT (Sound Recording Technology BM)/MUI (Music Industry BM)developed your musicianship?
“When we’re actually recording something, and coming up with ways to make the song better, you know where you’re going in terms of technology.”
There’s always a clear direction with where Settle for Sadler is going with a song in the recording studio. In “Eye of the Storm,” the whole outro was composed post-production. Kyle specifically enjoys that students have free reign over resources in Belfer, and that their music can be released on all platforms. Believe it or not, some music schools actually limit students in this aspect because of reputation and prestige. Andrew is encouraged to have fun and be creative in the studio, especially as a self-taught musician. Learning the fundamentals of music at school has given him the boost to make good music. Rylan has developed an adaptable mindset as a result of the resources here in terms of the music writing process. He now thinks of the song as a whole rather than parts put together, but he’s also not shy about experimenting when he’s not sure of the whole picture.
Why do you love music? When did you start loving music?
“It was kind of an epiphany moment.”
In elementary school, Jimmy would not stop tapping on his desk, and eventually asked his parents for a drum set. (Classic!)
For Rylan, an epiphany moment occurred one night in high school. A lot of his favorite songs are game tracks because he started to tune into the compositional aspects in the music. He ran downstairs that same night and said, “Dad, I’m gonna be a composer!”
You know when a song really connects with you and you just start bawling your eyes out? This kind of instant connection with music is something Andrew wanted to get on as soon as possible.
Kyle always enjoyed the stories music tells. He started playing double bass in elementary school. His dad got him an electric bass and he just loved playing it. Eventually in high school he just started jamming out with friends and joining bands.
Other than pursuing it as a career, how has music shaped other parts of your life? Friends? Family?
“It’s made me a more confident person overall to be able to say, “Oh, I’m pretty good at music.”
90% of the time, music is what connects the band with people. In the same way, it’s exactly what initially connected them with each other!
What are each of your favorite songs at the moment and why?
“Now that we are getting into the swing of it as a band, it’s all coming full circle and everyone is super excited for new songs.”
Andrew- Broadripple is Burning by Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s. Each end of the phrase really hits listeners in the feels.
Kyle- Everything Everything: Blast doors. There’s a killer guitar riff.
Rylan- Death Cab: Lightness. The simplicity in the song is something to really connect with emotionally.
Jimmy- Pink Floyd: Dogs. The song is 20 minutes long and by the end of it, you’re left like, “That’s it?!”
And Settle for Sadler’s favorite Settle for Sadler song, drumroll please, is “West of the Bedroom” because it was a huge accomplishment to play it live. Everyone is just having a great time playing and making music together, and it definitely shows.
When you get the chance, you have to see Settle for Sadler in action. Look out for upcoming shows on social media!