When the pandemic first hit, many of us were in isolation with little to do and nowhere to go. For some, this meant introspection, reflection and embracing the change of pace. For some it was a time filled with anxiety and fear. Some of us were essential workers. For some, like New Paltz student Dan Nicosia and his band, Zero Views, it was an opportunity to start something new.
Zero Views, a band which was created remotely during the initial stages of isolation, just released its first album, Bad Gateway, on Oct. 30. The group comprises of fourth-year adolescent education major, Dan Nicosia (engineer, vocalist), Lachlan Hyatt (producer, vocalist), Kenny Goubran (vocalist), Diego Monzon (producer, engineer, vocalist) and Viren Fernandes (producer, engineer, vocalist). The group is scattered from Long Island to Colorado to Texas.
The long-time friends had been sharing their music together for quite a while. Sometimes they would collaborate in pairs, or someone would create a piece solo. Once quarantine hit, however, the group decided to take the next step by making the band official and releasing music on outlets such as Spotify and Apple Music.
“We just decided when we were all sitting at home doing nothing, we might as well do this together now . . . the five of us. We can’t even see each other but we’re gonna do it,” Nicosia said.
Through the wonders of technology (mainly email) the friends started layering vocals on top of beats, sending and resending until they had a product they were happy with.
Zero Views’ album Bad Gateway is partly composed of singles released between the months of March and July.
“We have a motto, or maybe a mantra in a way; if we have stuff done, we’re just gonna put it out there because we don’t want to sit on things,” Nicosia said.
Months in, however, Zero Views decided to “pause” and “bundle it all together.”
“By August, we had something cohesive that we liked . . . Our last single was ‘Iced Tea,’ that was released July 4, and then finally we decided that we’re just going to hold off on releasing singles, and just put out this album. We were done with it by the beginning of September,” Nicosia said.
With favorites including “Too Young To Die” and “Van Gogh,” Bad Gateway can easily be pigeon-holed into the hip-hop/rap genre. However, Nicosia is adamant that the band itself is free-flowing in what it plans to produce.
“We’re having fun with it and just doing our own thing. We never really liked to do what anyone else is doing or stick to a genre. I feel like, if people understand that part about our band, they’ll get a greater appreciation for what we do,” Nicosia said.