If you ask Emily “September” Lazar what her band September Mourning is like, she’ll correct you.
September Mourning isn’t a band. Well, they’re not just a band. It’s actually a transmedia project, a sprawling idea that stemmed from an idea Lazar had about a decade ago.
It consists of music, a theatrical show, a comic book and much more. September Mourning is a project you can’t fully explain, because it continues to grow and grow.
This isn’t the first-ever transmedia project to exist. Other forms of media like “The Blair Witch Project” and “The Matrix” are considered to be transmedia projects. But September Mourning is the first to build an entire world with music, videos, a live show and graphic novel.
“Everything branches off from this comic book that I created and wrote,” she said. “People should definitely know what they’re getting into when they come see our show, because it’s not just a concert. We’re telling this in-depth story and using all of these different forms of media to tell it.”
Music lovers who are planning to go to the Smile Empty Soul performance Friday night at the Asher Building are going to be in for much more than just a concert. They’re going to be in for a full theatrical experience.
On Friday, local band Heartsick Heroine, September Mourning and Smile Empty Soul will bring down the house at the Asher. Smile Empty Soul is a post-grunge band from California.
In the two decades since their formation, they’ve released seven albums, three extended plays and one compilation album. Their biggest hits include “Bottom of a Bottle,” “Finding Myself” and “Who I Am.”
Lazar noted that September Mourning has toured with the grunge band before and added that her group is excited to perform with them again.
“The guys are awesome and super chill,” she said. “Our fan bases have a lot of overlap, and we just have a great time whenever we go out on the road together. I’m super grateful for being able to work with them.”
She described the September Mourning live show as the group telling their audience a story, one that will “take you out of your normal life for about 30 minutes.”
The band has released one extended play, “Volume I,” and one full-length record, “Volume II,” which came out in 2016. They were working on another record at the time of this interview, and Lazar mentioned that they will drop a new single later this month.
The basic story of September Mourning is about a young woman named September, a woman who is turned into a human/grim reaper hybrid after a reaper falls in love with her when he’s tasked with taking her soul. As she balances between the worlds of the living and the dead, she begins to take “wicked” people’s souls, allowing those she deems good and worthy to take the bad people’s bodies. However, Fate (who’s personified in the story) is angry with her, because she’s challenging his will. So, he continues to send more reapers after her.
“It’s really this epic battle between the good people and fate,” she said. “This project has pushed me to my creative limits. I’ve learned so much about things like lighting and costume design, things I would have never thought about delving into before starting September Mourning.”
She hopes people take away the message of self-discovery and learning what you’re capable of with September Mourning’s music and graphic novel. But this theme could continue to evolve, because there’s no end in sight for the project. As they continue working, Lazar will push herself more and more to make this project even more wondrous.