Behind the Voice: Meredith Call

October 21, 2009
She's been the voice in our heads ever since the first time 'Deep Down' touched our ears. It's the tone of vocalist Meredith Call that made us fall in love with the new Josh Gabriel project, Winter Kills.

She's been the voice in our heads ever since the first time 'Deep Down' touched our ears. "They say..they say.." and we were lost. It's the melancholic, clear tone of vocalist Meredith Call that made us fall in love with the new Josh Gabriel project, Winter Kills. Expectations for this deep, vocal project are high and with a complete album in the making, all faces rest a gaze on this lovely lady. Time to get to know her a bit and see what way she's heading. We're pretty sure it's not the wrong way down...

Armada: When did you first start singing?
Meredith:"Age four or five, in the back seat of my mom's car. She played music that was great for singing. My love of it was solidified a few years later with the Pulp Fiction soundtrack. She and I would sing 'Son of a Preacher Man' and Chuck Berry's 'You Never Can Tell' like no one was looking."

Armada: How did you notice there was more than just a good ring to it?
Meredith:"I sang in various school plays in elementary school. Mostly about exciting topics such as Christmas and the importance of recycling. Teachers and parents took note and gave positive feedback."

Armada: Did you ever take singing lessons, or have you learned the techniques all by yourself?
Meredith: "I've never taken singing lessons. I don't have much of a technique either. I actually received my first helpful vocal instruction from Mr. Josh Gabriel in the studio sometime last year. 'Louder...and more serious!' It seems to work every time."

Armada: Did it take long before you were confident enough to do live performances?
Meredith: "I have only performed once with Josh. I was extremely comfortable because I was surrounded by my friends. Prior to that, my past performances were primarily in school talent shows, with no prize, at which I was always a nervous wreck with shaky knees."

Armada: Have you always known you were going to be professionally involved with music? Or did you chase other dreams when you were younger?
Meredith: "I didn't see it coming at all, actually. I graduated from college and landed a job in Washington, DC where I was immediately displeased with being a hamster on a wheel. I would probably still be there, ravenously applying to grad schools and drinking gallons of office break-room coffee, if I hadn't been fortunate enough to meet Josh."

Armada: There must have been some point where you made the choice to go for music professionally. When was it?
Meredith: "When Josh gave me the opportunity to work with him. What sane person would turn that down?"

Armada: How did you eventually end up in EDM?
Meredith: "I've been hooked on EDM since I was fourteen. Trance was my gateway genre, but prior to being exposed to all that, I was enraptured by the sounds and words of my favorite band of all time: Garbage. Their 'Version 2.0' album is responsible for my love of electronic music."

Armada: Has dance music always appealed to you?
Meredith: "Since my adolescence, yes. Long live the band, but they can only create so many sounds. Dance music allows so much room for innovation, and I'm very stimulated by sounds I've never heard before. I also spent a lot of time listening to sad songs growing up, wallowing in their beautiful melancholy and embracing the agony of teenage heartache. That was swell, but dance music, no matter what kind, has always left me feeling positive. I love that."

Armada: How did the whole Winter Kills project come to life? Did you work with Josh Gabriel before?
Meredith: "I had the good fortune of meeting the talented Christopher Norman in 2007. We clicked creatively and started jamming together. It was my first time singing with anyone. Chris was really responsible for bringing me back to my love of music and inspiring me to start writing. He was working on some music for Josh's label at the time, and so he introduced us. The stars aligned, and eventually Josh and I found our way to working together."

Armada: 'Deep Down' has some pretty outstanding lyrics, did you write them? Do you always write lyrics yourself?
Meredith: "I wrote the lyrics for 'Deep Down' on a very long plane ride, but there wasn't any real structure to the words. So Josh worked with my lyrics and melody and changed their structure to feel more like a song. I do typically write in solitude, in those rare and precious moments of inspiration, but sometimes I need Josh to help put my ideas in an order that feels right. He's an amazing songwriter himself, and you'll hear some of his lyrics on the album as well."

Armada: The music video for the track has just come online, are you happy with the result?
Meredith: "Very pleased! It's nice and spooky, just the way we wanted it. The images really suit the mood of the music."

Armada: 'My Friend' will be the next Winter Kills release. What can you tell us on the track?
Meredith: "'My Friend' is quite a departure from 'Deep Down'. It's a warm, sentimental song about a friendship that you value highly but that has also emotionally exhausted you. The vibe is rockier, and I enjoy it the most when I'm on the road with the windows down."

Armada: You and Josh are working on a complete album. Can you give us some clues on what to expect of it?
Meredith:"So far, it's shaping up to be very diverse. Some songs are energetic and great on the dance floor; others are more down-tempo and experimental. I'm happy to say that every song feels very much like a song, with solid melodies and satisfying chord progressions behind them. We are creating them in the way that feels right to us as we go along. We're not really worrying about whether or not they will fit into DJ sets or how they might be categorized. I also feel the urge to note that one of our tracks features some steel guitar (you know, the kind that looks like a bench with strings on top), courtesy of my dad. Heads up!"

Armada: Besides the Winter Kills project - is there anything else you're working on? Anything exciting coming up in the near feature?
Meredith:" Nope! I'm committed to finishing this album and am soooo looking forward to the journey. I am truly lucky to be making music with Josh. We have a great flow, and our sounds really complement each other. The quality of his music is unparalleled and there's no one else I'd rather work with. "

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