Noise Complaint, IV’s only metal band talk inspiration, hardships, and metal


Joaquin Santamaria

Radean Anavaria of Noise Complaint

Dra Alva (bass), Jake Morenc (drums/vocals), Radean Anvaria (lead guitar) and Aiden Spektor (rhythm guitar) (left to right) make up the members of the only local metal band, Noise Complaint, taking inspirations from metalcore, nu metal, and hardcore to make heavy riffs with pounding drums and aggressive vocals. Noise Complaint has gone through plenty of line up changes, with Jake and Radean being the only two original members. Photo by Joaquin Santamaria.

Joaquin: How do you keep consistency when you play?

Radean: For me as a guitar player, I really love heavy metal, and what helps me is hearing, like, a cool riff I need to learn or a breakdown in an odd time signature. I just need to figure it out.

Aiden: I think about how hard the drummer’s working. I start to think I could probably put a little more energy into this. The amazing thing about metal is that you get to play drums on every single instrument. And then you have the drums, we all get into one rhythm and we can’t be in one rhythm if we aren’t all in the same energy and consistency.

Aiden Spektor of Noise Complaint (Joaquin Santamaria)

Joaquin: Do you guys get any stage fright?

Aiden: It all depends on the song. If I know the song like the back of my hand, I don’t really care, but if it’s a song I’m not as confident on, I’m scared of messing up or underperforming in front of people. But the thrill of being on stage always overpowers my negative thoughts.

Jake: I’m only scared of my own critiques, like watching a video and thinking I sound bad.

Radean: For me, it’s also a lot of self-criticism. I care about how I play and I want to give 100 percent to the crowd.

Joaquin: When did you guys start playing music?

Jake: About 14 years ago is when I started.

Radean: I started when I was eight, so fifteen years about. My parents got me classical lessons, which sucked, but it was a very good foundation and definitely made my playing way better vs if I didn’t get those lessons.

Dra: I probably started when I was, like, 10. Just like singing and acoustic guitar and stuff. But then I progressed to more electric stuff.

Aiden: I started playing drums in middle school, like sixth grade, and then moved to guitar when I was a freshman in high school.

Drako Alva of Noise Complaint (Joaquin Santamaria)

Joaquin: What are the top 5 bands that inspire your personal playing?

Jake: For me, it goes Metallica, Iron Maiden, Slipknot, and now Tool and Gojira.

Radean: Just metal would be Metallica, Slipknot, Linkin Park, Avenged Sevenfold, and, recently, Turnstile.

Dra: For what we do, I’ll say Bring Me The Horizon, and for the breakdowns, probably Sunami and LANDMVRKS. I’ll leave it at that.

Aiden: I guess my favorite all-time metal band ever is Pantera, just because they’re the heaviest act of all time and because Dimebag is a guitar saint. I also like animals as leaders, Metallica, Megadeth, and I think the whole band can fundamentally agree that Rush is one of our top inspirations.

Dra: I forgot to say Pantera.

Joaquin: You are a metal band that plays in IV, a very DJ-dominated space. What’s it like being in a band out of your zone?

Jake: The scene is definitely evolving. We’re finding more and more people to join our cult, essentially, and the shows keep getting more fun. Frat parties are going downhill and we’ve been carving our own space with bands like Mantis Finger and Loc Dawgs.

Aiden: Yeah, when I first came to IV I was just super happy that Jake was making this happen. I actually get to play metal for people and it blew me out of the water, when you’re a metalhead you believe that you’re a part of this like club not many people know about. Just the fact that you can hear metal on a Saturday night is so cool.

Dra: The tide is turning. A lot of the younger people are starting bands.

Jake: I’ve also met so many people that didn’t listen to metal and wandered into one of our shows and then after the show, they came up to me and asked for a playlist of our covers that we’ve played. I love that because people just need to experience metal live and understand it.

Aiden: You go into a metal show and you realize that it’s completely safe. People are picking you up if you fall down in a mosh pit, everybody’s just there to have fun. It’s very angry but in a cathartic way, we are like a family.

Joaquin: What are some sacrifices that have to be made for this to happen?

Dra: Jake puts in a lot of time and effort. It’s what we do and you’ll realize sacrifices are necessary.

Jake: I just sacrifice a lot of sleep and money.

Aiden: If you are set on it and determined to succeed then you will accomplish it. Where you are spending your hours will show you what you’re passionate about.

Radean: If you love it you’ll find time to do it. I love metal and I make time to practice even if that means I have to sacrifice interacting with friends and family sometimes.

Joaquin: What’s it like playing shows in IV?

Jake Morenc (Joaquin Santamaria)

Dra: Other metal bands as new as us don’t get to play shows to crowds as energetic and fun as ours. That’s definitely unique to IV.

Jake: We play on DIY wooden stages, this community loves music and there’s no place we would rather be than IV!

Joaquin: What do you have to say to anyone who wants to start a band but has doubts?

Aiden: Get your metalhead friends together, start a band, play shows, have fun, and be unique. Even if you kinda suck in the beginning, no one starts sounding professional.

Jake: My first band was not great but I had to take that first step and start doing this seriously. I had nowhere else to practice freshman year at UCSB so one day I put my drums at Lot 22 and practiced up there, and I got a lot of noise complaints. Now every night a different band practices there, I had nowhere else to practice but I made it happen anyways. That’s also how I got the name Noise Complaint! So if you want to start a band, do whatever you have to do to make it work! Expand the scene! You got this!

“Our Grave” by Noise Complaint is out now streaming on all platforms.

Noise Complaint playing their instruments at a show on Friday, October 21, 2022

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