Hailing from Los Angeles, CA, Gemini Syndrome has become a force to be reckoned with since the release of their debut album, Lux, back in 2013. The alternative metal band has toured with names such as Five Finger Death Punch, Sevendust, and Drowning Pool, gathering a strong following of fans, more commonly known to the band as “Synners.”
In the past two years, they have undergone many changes including band lineup and switching record labels. Currently, they are signed with Another Century and their lineup consists of Aaron Nordstrom (lead vocals), Daniel Sahagún (lead guitars, backing vocals), Chuck Lee (rhythm guitars, backing vocals), Alessandro Paveri (bass), and Brian Steele Medina (drums).
Nordstrom described the band’s beginnings back in 2010 as a perfect storm. “Everybody was kind of looking to do the same thing and had the same idea, as far as musical production content,” said Nordstrom.
Fast forward six years. While two of the members have moved on from the band, those that remain in Gemini Syndrome have grown stronger than ever, according to Nordstrom.
“Any time you spend that amount of time with someone or multiple someones… you get closer and you learn more about them as a person, their habits, their traits. Your communication becomes easier and better, more fine-tuned. We’ve had a couple guys leave the band and the three of us that remain here, Brian, Paveri and myself… it brought us even closer. We didn’t want to give up. We didn’t want to turn our back on it. If anything, it gave us the motivation to push it further for our art. They’ve become family,” said Nordstrom.
According to Nordstrom, it was that growth in communication that helped Memento Mori evolve beyond the band’s earlier projects.
“It absolutely sounds like Gemini Syndrome, as I would hope it would. But I think it’s more mature and a little more evolved. When you’re creating something as individuals, the closer that group is, the stronger the outcome. We all push each other to our limits and make each other better. Make each other do things that we may not typically want to do. And just make our skill-sets better,” said Nordstrom.
Gemini Syndrome’s latest album falls right in line with the concepts portrayed in their debut album. Their first album, Lux, focused on birth and light. Their second album Memento Mori was fittingly described as a follow-up concept album by Nordstrom—meant to depict life and the eye-opening journey that comes along with it.
“Memento Mori means ‘Remember that you have to die.’ As morbid as that might sound, it’s more of a conscious realization that life is not infinite, it’s finite. And it will end at some point. I think when you’re young and explore the world around you, it all seems new, because it is new. Even learning what shapes are, what sounds are, what colors are. Then, as time goes on, you start to develop a personality, you start becoming an individual and get comfortable within your skin and body. At some point, you’re considered, I guess an ‘adult’ or something. For me, personally, as well as the other guys in the band, there’s this revelation that it could end. That gives you this amazing opportunity to take every moment with a certain appreciation. There are some lyrics on this record that talk about whether it be money, sex, drugs, television shows, or whatever distracts you… at the end of the day, you’re here as a human being. You’re here as this conscious being surrounded by all these other conscious beings living really the same reality that you are… just trying to figure it out and remembering that you die gives you that power to harness each moment. Our next album will be about death and what’s next. I think we’re a little more esoteric with that,” said Nordstrom.
When asked which track fans should listen to first, Nordstrom eagerly said “All of them,” adding that there are absolutely no throw-away tracks on this album.
Nordstrom continued, “Everything has a message and that’s why this is a concept record. It’s all telling a story. I think the song Alive Inside, for instance… that song says it’s okay to feel alive, even if you’re alone. Musically, it has this full rock and roll and then it’s ambiance in the chorus and then it’s heavy like the apocalypse. It takes you on all of those journeys. I think every song on this record almost has that same kind of theme where there’s gonna be a pretty melody, that’s gonna be nice to sing along to, then they have parts where they get dark because that’s kind of the progression of life itself. You’ll have a great day and then you’ll have a totally crap day. You’ll feel angry or violent or something and then other times you’ll laugh.”
The music video for Alive Inside was released shortly after our interview and can be found on Gemini Syndrome’s Youtube.
In a music industry where more and more bands seem to be moving in the direction of independent labels and have been cutting ties with major labels, Gemini Syndrome has consistency. The band’s first album was released via Warner Brothers records. They recently switched to Sony-affiliated Another Century. While some bands have reported feeling a loss in creative power under major labels, Nordstrom said members of Gemini Syndrome have had nothing but good experiences, so far.
“We have created friendships with them. They were always at our shows when we were in Los Angeles. They always showed up to the festivals, they were always there. The things that I really enjoyed about them was even though they’re technically a major label, the fact is that those relationships are already there. Everyone there is very much accessible. It’s easy for us to make a phone call to anyone. I mean, I can call the president of the label and he’ll pick up my call. I’m not saying I do that all the time, but I have the option to. In the creation of this record, everyone was always very open to hearing our ideas. That’s not to say that’s not how it was before, because there were some great people there too, but it was just such a bigger machine that it was hard to get, I think, our vision through being a young band that nobody really knew. It just seems more valuable and I think that’s more conducive to what we’re trying to accomplish,” Nordstrom explained.
In preparation for their upcoming album, the band recently uploaded a 360ᵒ music video for Anonymous onto their YouTube channel.
In what is easily one of Memento Mori’s heaviest tracks, Nordstrom noted Anonymous also carries with it an immense amount of meaning.
“Being aware of the fact that society is being separated by so many different ideologies, whether it be politics or religion or sexual orientation. All of this knowledge that’s out there that’s dividing us. Then the anonymous group came out and you don’t really know who’s running that at all because there’s just so many different facets of it. My favorite part of that song is the breakdown that says “Everybody love each other” and it’s the most aggressive part on the record. I want that to be the mosh pit part. I mean that really sums it up. Just be a team. Realize that all these things that you think separate you from somebody else, don’t really. They’re all ideas and we’re still all human. We’re all here. That ties directly into the concept of the record. ‘Remember that you have to die.’ Whatever your ideas are, that’s great, you can believe whatever you want. But if you think those beliefs make you better or worse than other human beings, that’s completely ludicrous. You’re literally all living the same story, it’s just that some of the details are different,” Nordstrom explained.
Gemini Syndrome has been traveling around the country in promotion of the new album during the Remember We Die Tour, alongside labelmates Stitched Up Heart and 9Electric.
For the list of tour dates, keep an eye on Gemini Syndrome’s website.
At the time of our interview, Nordstrom was unable to give us a sneak-peek on what is to come after their current tour– noting that he wished he could. However, he did offer a few words of thanks to all the Synners out there.
“As always, a big thank you to our fans. I say this with every interview I do because without the people supporting us, we wouldn’t be able to do this. It’s really a pleasure and honor to know that the art that we create matters to people and helps in some way, maybe not even helps them, but makes their lives that much more enjoyable to live,” Nordstrom added.