Artist Spotlight

John Kunkel of The New Division

John Kunkel of The New Division

| Interview by Daniel Codella conducted on September 21, 2011.

The New Division became indie darlings after the release of their incredible EP, "The Rookie." These boys from Riverside, CA are about to raise their profile even higher with the release of their new LP, "Shadows." Combining the 80s synth sounds of "The Rookie" with more modern house and trance influences, "Shadows" weaves a surprisingly cohesive tale, although frontman John Kunkel explains it didn't begin that way. Check out this, and other lights John casts on "Shadows" in the interview below.

Your new album is entitled "Shadows." What is the meaning behind that title?

We didn't really know what to call the album to be honest. We came up with the name after playing a show, and for whatever reason, that word came into my head and I told the guys we should call the LP "Shadows." Everyone instantly agreed!

How do you think this new album differs from "The Rookie" EP?

Well, the songs have a bit more layering I'd say in terms of being a bit more progressive. Quite a few of the songs don't have that verse/chorus/verse structure. The sound is a bit darker with some songs as well.

Did anything change in either your writing style or production on this new record?

Not necessarily, the writing for this album was sort of popcorn style. The weird thing about "Shadows," and I think it may be evident to some listeners, is that it wasn't written as an album. A lot of the songs existed before the thought of doing an album ever occured. Actually, we had originally planned on just releasing an EP, and then we later decided we wanted to do a full length. Production wise, things have changed a little in terms of general mixing techniques, and layering of certain sounds. Overall though, I think the quality is much better in "Shadows" than anything else we've ever released.

Did you use any of the DrumCore or Discrete Drums samples in either the final productions or the demo songs?

Lately we've been experimenting with them more, and I think there's a solid chance they will be featured on future material.

What does 2012 hold for The New Division?

2012 will be a year of a lot of releases, remixes, and potentially covers. We're also working on a few sample packs for those interested in production. We've got a lot on our plate.

When will "Shadows" be released, and where can our users purchase a copy?

"Shadows" will be out 9/27/11 and folks will be able to download it through iTunes and If you have any inquiries, just hit us up at

Read our previous interview with John Kunkel

"DrumCore and Discrete Drums were really awesome to work with. I really enjoyed the Discrete Drum samples because they reminded me a lot of those 90s Depeche Mode drum styles which are hard to create (unless you have samples). The quality is really phenomenal."

John Kunkel of The New Division

Check out The New Division's latest EP "Night Escape":

John uses the following Sonoma Wire Works products:

"DrumCore is so handy and so very easy to use! It's very close to having a live drummer with you."

Learn more about DrumCore
Anthony Gonzalez of M83

"I'm obsessed with this recording app on my iPhone- the Sonoma Wire Works FourTrack. It's like you have a superpowerful studio in your pocket."

Learn more about FourTrack
Trey Anastasio of Phish

"Just tried out Sonoma Wire Works GuitarJack plus the new upgraded FourTrack app. Beautiful crystal clear sparkling audio in iOS!"

Learn more about GuitarJack
Jordan Rudess of Dream Theater

"RiffWorks is an incredible tool to get songs done stupid fast!"

Learn more about RiffWorks
Johnny "Juice" Rosado of Public Enemy