Spirit in the Room: A Candid Conversation


“If Nick Cave, Lemmy, Elvis, Harry Dean Stanton and Iggy, had a child in a church gone mad… That is Dennis.”  -Steffan Charizi (editor of Metallica’s So What! magazine)

LA based band Spirit in the Room was founded by Dennis Sanders in 2009.  Combining a mixture of anything and everything that tickles his fancy, it is difficult to define their sound. Sanders even admits “I don’t really describe my sound.”  But he adds the caveat that “[t[hat’s for the listener to do.”

Sanders began performing in his teens.  There on the stage, the pure exhilaration of performing for an audience struck him.  At that moment, he decided on a career in music because “the feeling of satisfaction and pure joy really stuck with me and I knew that I would do whatever I had to do to keep those feelings alive.” 

For Sanders, the idea of being on the stage is always his first choice.  “The stage first. Then back to the studio to create something for the stage. The stage is a place where people claim to be comfortable and maybe some are. I dunno. I’m not too sure about that. It’s a pretty uncomfortable place to be. But if you have it, you give it. And if people want it, they’ll take it. So yeah. It’s like therapy. It’s awkward at first but you get used to it and then you start to crave it. Definitely my favorite place to be for I am perfectly fine with making friends with discomfort.” 

This sense of therapy is one of the main driving forces for Sanders to continue pushing forward with Spirit in the Room. “The songs in my head keep me going. The fact that it’s something I feel I do particularly well and I enjoy it very much keeps me motivated.” 

For anyone who has seen youtube videos of Spirit in the Room live (or who have been privy to actually catch them live), it is easy to see that this is where Sanders (and the band) thrive.  There is a kinetic energy between Sanders and the audience.  The audience can quickly see the emotion he has with his music.

Sanders takes influence from many different bands and musicians, such as PJ Harvey, Queens of the Stone Age, Ministry, and Faith No More.  All of these varied interests can be heard in the music of Spirit in the Room.  The most refreshing aspect of Spirit in the Room comes from the notion that Sanders refuses to pigeonhole himself.  Beyond the musicians above, he allows himself the creative freedom to allow more sources into his music. “I don’t really have any main influences though to be honest, but I do have a lot of influences. I’ll hear a hip hop song with a fresh beat and it’ll be something I go off of. I knew that for this project I wanted it to be something that could cover a few different styles. I’m not really interested in side projects for that reason. This is my focus and since I write the music and produce the vision, I can pretty much do whatever I want. If I want to do a black metal record or a trip hop record and call it Spirit in the Room, I will do just that. I definitely won’t make the same record over and over. DEMON is completely different from Color Coded and The Holy Phobia is completely different from the Greatest Hits release.”

To find out more about Spirit in the Room:

Facebook:  https://www. spiritintheroomsounds

Instagram: spiritintheroom

Soundcloud: in-the-room

Twitter: SpiritintheRoom

Youtube: spiritintheroom1

Bandcamp:  https://spiritintheroom.

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