Welcome to “6 Questions With…,” a series of interviews with emerging artists, musicians, and bands focusing on the music scene and how they live within it. It started as a quick, fun project, but has quickly gained serious interest, so it has become a permanent fixture here on Indie Minded. Over time, the questions may change, but the sentiment will stay the same. This is a way for independent artists to be discovered by new fans on a global scale.

We hope you enjoy this series, and if you know anyone that might be interested in being part of it, please have them reach out to us for more information.

Next in the hot seat is Raleigh, NC-based indie alt-synth-pop band, OCNS. We have not had the privilege of featuring OCNS here on the pages of Indie Minded, so we are thrilled to bring you this short interview. Sit back and enjoy! This is what is great about this series – the discovery of new music.

For those who may not be familiar, please tell us about your music: the type of music you play, where you are from, and how you got started. 

OCNS is a six-piece band from North Carolina and we play music that lies somewhere between synthpop and alt-rock. We got started after a couple of us met in high school, while some of the guys had been playing together at church for most of their lives. David, our lead guitarist, joined a bit later after having talked to him online. This past year, we met Andrew, our vocalist, through the Internet as well, and he instantly clicked with the whole group. We’ve been this way since.

As an artist, how do you define success?

Success is being able make anyone at all feel the way we feel when we listen to our favorite records. We all love music, some of the same things, but also at the same time, many different styles and genres that cover so much emotional ground. To be able to have someone get any kind of “chills” when they hear a song that really resonates with them that all six of us have collectively had our hands in creating is making it in our book. Sure, we’d all love to do this full-time, but everyone’s favorite artist probably has some form of a day job just to stay sane, so that’s a pipe dream.

What do you find to be your greatest struggle when it comes to the music business?

It has been difficult to balance six people’s schedules as we all work 5+ days a week at our day (and night) jobs so we can have roofs over our heads and keep our instruments from exploding. Andrew (vocals) lives about 2 hours away from the rest of us as well so it can be a challenge to practice as often as we’d like, but he’s really been putting in dedication and lots of miles on his car to make it happen as much as possible.

If you could only play ONE of your songs for the rest of your career, which one would it be?

[Drew]: Personally, I could play “Waiting” on loop for a week and be fine with it, so I’d probably choose that one. That’s not something we’ve released yet but we’ve been playing it live and it’s simple at its roots but is very dynamic. Playing it at a low volume with less power is so relaxing, but it sounds massive when everyone is smashing their instruments.

We don’t have that one, but let’s share a new one: “You” 

Who do you consider your greatest influences?

We all like The 1975, Mutemath, and most of us like The Neighbourhood- a lot of 80’s influenced synthpop. Stuff like that, all the way to The Weeknd, Radiohead, Bad Suns, and The Paper Kites. We all certainly have our own personal influence, but I think those are the ones that are common among us and shine through the music we make as a group the most.

Outside of music, what do you like to do that you feel contributes to the creativity that you tap into for your music?

Andrew loves designing things, whether that be architectural or graphic, and actually went to school for both sides. I think he channels a lot of creativity into that when he’s not writing music.

Isaac is an insane visual artist, on paper or digitally, and he creates photorealistic portraits of people and objects that people often mistake for photographs.

Grandy and Isaac both really like taking photos and editing them. They’ve also always been skaters as long as I’ve known them. They stopped a while ago but they’ve still got some moves

Esdras draws and writes fiction, and I’m still waiting for the man to show us the book he started writing some time ago. He’s always drawn his own tattoos and had a lot of talent for creating visuals with words, which I think he uses a lot when he’s writing lyrics.

I run a lot and think that it serves as a meditation. For the most part, any good musical idea I’ve ever had was developed on the spot at practice or was dreamt up while i was on a run off somewhere.

All the boys like playing soccer/futbol and I believe that being able to take a breather from working on music or any creative endeavor to kick out some energy is very important and helpful.

Website | Facebook | Instagram | @ocnsband

Kelly Murphy
Owner, writer, and editor of Indie Minded; Social Media Marketing & Relationship Consulting via Indie Minded Media; Be sure to give me a follow on Twitter @IndieMurphy or @IndieMindedMedia