Exclusive interview: New video, music and book from Brad Cox and We Love The Underground
Video provided by Brad Cox/YouTube

Baltimore band We Love the Underground has been Brad Cox’s active project since his last successful group Skitzo Calypso circled the Mid-Atlantic area from 1996-2014. Recently Brad released his first EP under his own name, Brad William Cox, called Children of the Program: Edge of the Fifth Sun to coincide with a novel of the same title. The book is the follow up to his highly successful first novel, “Children of the Program.” His band We Love The Underground recently did a music video for the Children of the Program album entitled “Kids In The Park,” which can been viewed above.

Covering topics from ancient Hopi prophecy to the Program Crystalline kids from the Top-Secret military defense project, “The Children of the Program: Edge of the Fifth Sun” will have readers wondering if the children of tomorrow will be the key to unlocking an enlightened new world and if a final collision between the righteous and wicked lead to an unexpected twist that might actually open the door to the Fifth Sun or end up resetting The Program. Wednesday AXS had the opportunity to speak with Brad and ask him a few questions about the books and their accompanying albums.

AXS: What was the inspiration for writing the books?

Brad Cox:  The books came from my religious upbringing, personal experiences and a general intrigue in cults, indigo children, spiritualism, mythology and mysticism.  They say, 'Write what you know,' so it started out autobiographical and branched out from there.  It follows the life of 12 souls, plucked from the underworld, who are sent on a divine mission to expand human consciousness.  The main character, Neco Baal (my character), tells the story through a first and third person lens.

AXS: Your band We Love The Underground released music to accompany the first book, “Children of the Program” which included the song and video “Kids In The Park.” (see above)

B.C.: “Kids in the Park” is lyrically one of the more complex tunes on Children of the Program and puts a bullseye directly on the back of some very uncomfortable social issues, it faces ‘em head on!  It’s an anthem for the underdog or the marginalized and highlights how group-think can often blind a society to the tragedies going on in their own backyard.  Many of these voices aren’t heard until it’s too late.  Back In ‘96 I wrote my first album, titled “Join the Cult,” which very much ties into this idea.  It pretty-well laid the groundwork for one of the most dramatic chapters in the book, some 20 years later.  The lyrics, as they were, speak for themselves.  Seriously, if you listen t’ any of the tracks, hear this one.

AXS: How did you enjoy working on a solo project?

B.C.: All of my bands started out as solo projects, so working on a solo album came naturally. It's something I'm always doing, whether it's under my own name or other monikers and aliases, such as Niki Thunders. The only difference is the latest effort was released under my own name.

AXS: Not only did you handle all the vocals as well as play guitar and bass on Children of the Program: Edge of the Fifth Sun, you wrote all the songs. What was the inspiration for the lyrics of "Far Beyond Your Reach."

B.C.: "Far Beyond Your Reach" was written about the protagonist in the story, who has gone off the rails and finds himself relishing in the spoils of fame, often ignoring his true calling.  “Far Beyond (god the ‘Council of the Lords’) Reach” would be a more apt title. It’s the heaviest track on the release and a very personal track for me, personally and spiritually.

AXS: We see you brought in some old friends to help round out the sound.

B.C.: I invited Gary Holmes of Skitzo Calypso to hit the skins on this project and Tony Correlli, who produced the project at The Deep End Studio, to guest on the piano for "Burn For Life" and "To Black and White."

The next notable show for We Love The Underground will be with Stabbing Westward at Baltimore Soundstage on Aug. 17.