Allow us to introduce you to your new favorite female-fronted powerhouses – Bruvvy. The band is reimagining rock ‘n’ roll with a fresh millennial perspective. They are reinvigorating the classic, raunchy, over-the-top energy that comes to mind in association with bands fueled by guitar riffs and rebellion.
As a trailblazing first impression of their “Little Heat” EP, available August 2021, Bruvvy is throwing us head-first into their universe with their single “U Think This Song Is About U.” They are spicing up the South Florida rock ‘n’ roll scene (literally) in their unruly restaurant takeover for the music video.
The video tells the story of vocalist Liz Varum’s emotionally destructive stint in the service industry. The setting is more than just a backdrop; it is the exact muse that inspired this punchy track. The storyline follows Varum’shumble beginnings in the kitchen to the full circle moment of filming a music video in her previous employer’s eventful dining room.
“The lyrics were written throughout the longest, shittiest work day of my entire life. I was covered in sweat and kitchen grease (which was airborne, and slowly making me breakout), getting emotionally abused by my boss, and the only tips that were ending up in my pocket were coming from a guy that wanted nothing more than for me to get on his motorcycle with him,” explained lead vocalist Liz Varum.
Behind the powerhouse vocals and groovy guitar melodies is a universal message of greed tarnishing work ethics.
I wondered for a second if anyone would notice if I took a handful of cash from the tip jar. I learned that day that when the sole motivation behind work is money, everyone is, at some point, reduced to a thief,” said Varum.
Since their first show in 2019, Bruvvy introduced the South Florida music scene to their powerful stage presence, their “anything goes” performance style, their raw realness, and most importantly, the friendship that keeps them glued to their listeners and to one another. This is not a rock n’ roll revival; it’s a rediscovery of the very spirit that possesses us to jump, scream, sweat, and connect.
Drummer Rob Griffith of Bronze Radio Return took time to answer some questions about the band’s new music and upcoming tour for Cliché Magazine. From discussing their latest body of work that will be released as a series of singles and EPs, their own musical tastes, and what they’re excited about in their upcoming tour, we can get an idea of what to expect in the months ahead, and where the band is coming from in the decisions they make in the music they put out.
Cliché: What was your motivation for releasing your latest album in single/EP forms, as opposed to a more traditional few singles and then full length album?
Rob Griffith: We wanted a release plan that felt current, but slightly different. The industry is so singles-driven now, and that can make it difficult to grab people’s attention when releasing a lot of songs at once. The slow rollout gives listeners enough time to focus on a small batch of songs (or just one song) at a time. We hope that this ultimately allows more of the tunes from the record to be heard by more people.
I’ve read that you want listeners to hear a fresh sound from you that they might not have expected before, and how your creative process has changed with time. Would you say that you made a deliberate choice to make music differently than you have in the past or was it more of a natural progression?
I’d say it’s been more of a natural progression. Like most things, our musical tastes evolve as time goes by. While we still love a lot of our influences that surrounded our first record, it’s certainly progressed each time we’ve hit the studio. We’ve always wanted to stay true to the sounds that make our band unique, but we’ve wanted each body of work to have a different signature on it.
How have your own musical tastes changed, if at all, over the years that you’ve been a band?
For me, it’s made me more open-minded in what I appreciate from a certain artist or song. Sometimes it’s just an undeniably good song that catches you. Other times it’s the stellar production. Other times it’s a particular part played on a particular instrument that grabs you. And sometimes it’s just the way a certain song makes you feel, and you have no idea why you like it so much. I think myself, and the rest of the guys still love our older influences, and modern things that remind us of those. But we’re always looking for new and exciting sounds. There’s a stigma that exists as you get older, where people think the next generation’s music is inferior. I couldn’t disagree more….Instead of quickly shooting something down, we try to understand what elements are attracting people to that music. I think that can really help you evolve as a musician, and as a fan of music.
What would you say listeners can expect to hear from your new album, or will we just have to wait and see?
They can expect to hear a continuation of where our music has been heading over the last few albums. I think the term “modern throwback” would appropriately describe this one. There are moments that feel inspired by our early influences, and there are moments that feel fresh and less familiar. I think we found a good balance of the two.
Is there a song that you are particularly excited about to be released from the new album?
The song I’ve been most excited about is “The Storm” which was just released actually. It’s one of the more rootsy songs from this album. It’s an emotional song about bracing for the impact of a relationship that’s going south, but one you still find some comfort and safety in. I think it’s a song most people can relate to, and the way the song builds really conveys the emotion behind it.
I’m sure going on tour is both exciting, but also very demanding, and can come with challenges. What are you most and least looking forward to on tour?
I’m most looking forward to the couple hours a night that we get to play music together. That’s what makes all the early mornings, late nights, and extensive travel worthwhile. There’s no substitute for how we feel when playing these songs for people who want to hear them. The biggest challenge is the time away from our wives/girlfriends. Luckily, we’re surrounded by very supportive people who want the best for us. Oh yeah, and finding good pizza in different cities. Can’t forget that.
What is your dream venue to play? Have you already had the chance to play it?
I’d have to say Red Rocks. Probably very cliché, but it just seems like a rite of passage in this biz. We haven’t done it yet, but fingers crossed, it isn’t far off.
Bronze Radio Return’s first EP from their new body of work will be dropping this Friday, 10/26, and can be pre-saved on Spotify here. They’ll be heading out on tour this January, stopping at cities all over the United States. The list of stops on their tour can be found on their website.
You can listen to Bronze Radio Return’s latest single from their new EP here:
Call Security is an alternative rock band comprised of Ben Scheibel (vocals), Peter Keller (guitar/vocals), Tim Brown (bass guitar), Tucker Jennings (drums), and Chance Jennings (management). From their beginning as a college cover band, they never imagined they would be climbing into to the music world outside of their small, Upstate New York campus. Now they’re gaining momentum, putting their music onto the scene and getting noticed. What comes next in the lives of the five 20-somethings as they enter into the career that seems to have chosen them? We found out!
Cliché: When did you guys all find each other and get started as a band? Call Security: We started as a cover band at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 2011, where our outreach was intended to be solely campus-based. Our interest in writing and performing original music was cultivated as we realized our presence on campus and in the local community had been gaining recognition.
When did you guys know you were really going to do this and that this wasn’t just a pipe dream anymore? The decision to commit to Call Security as a career was made even before we left school. The support and positivity that we received after the release of our first EP, To Whom It May Concern, solidified our convictions in Call Security’s potential and ultimately allowed us to confidently delve into the world of musical creation and performance.
Tell me about you guys as a band. What are you like together? As a band, we have become known for delivering high-energy live performances. The variety of influences in each member’s musical background blends together in a signature sound, which walks the line between modern and vintage stylings.
What is your creative process like? Where do you guys draw the most inspiration for your songs? Our creative process, in this way, is highly collaborative. Ideas are shared in a forum that promotes making each song our own, regardless of who originally brought it to the table.
I’m sure you get the “starving artist” question all the time, but I have to ask: do you all have day jobs still? While Call Security is a means of creative expression for all of us, it is our hope that it also becomes our livelihood. Much like any other start-up business, Call Security LLC requires funding, which comes largely from our individual work endeavors. Whether it’s through teaching music lessons, serving tables, financial consulting, or handyman work, each member contributes to the band’s efforts.
What are your goals as a band? We aim to use every accomplishment as a stepping-stone, and we are excited to see how far this adventure takes us!
What do you think has been the most important moment of your journey so far? There have been many important achievements in our journey, including our relocation to Providence, Rhode Island, and the release of our sophomore EP, Laberge. We have found that each reached milestone inspires us to carry the momentum of Call Security’s success. Playing house parties on campus instilled a desire to play in the local community. Support from small venues pushed us to expand our outreach.
Do you have anything coming up that you’re excited about? In August, we are opening for Marian Hill at the WBRU summer concert series in Providence, and then later for Phillip Phillips at the [email protected] Festival in Stamford. We are also developing our following through new music and promotional content, like music videos and radio interviews. In the coming months, we are excited to release the new single we have been working on.
It’s officially June and the long-awaited music festival is here! Bands from all over are getting together to prepare for the traveling festival of a lifetime, The Warped Tour. With an epic lineup and dozens of bands, this tour is sure to satisfy all rock music lovers. But what will they wear?
Classic band tees are the typical go-to, but to fit in with this band scene, standing out is the way to go. That’s why many bands and artists are teaming up with music tour fashion brand, Absolute Merch, to create custom and unique pieces to not only meet the needs of fans, but to give them an experience.
Absolute Merch’s co-founders Billy Candler and Noah Russell set out to change band merch as we know it. They wanted to create a community with their fashion while making complex and unique pieces of merchandise to fit the bands and artists they work alongside with.
All of their pieces are different, fun, and definitely worth checking out, especially if you want to be ready for the upcoming music tour. We know we will be ready! Here are some of our favorite designs from Absolute Merch’s new Limited collection.
ETF – HATE ME RED DYED TEE
The Hate Me Tee is a custom dyed red tee with a unique spin on one of Escape the Faith’s popular songs. The red and black tie-dyed shirt is only available online for pre-order, giving the brand’s buyers an opportunity to get a limited edition shirt that not everyone else will be wearing. Having a subtle front and edgy back side, this tee is perfect for everyday wear or a night out with friends.
FFAK – DEATHGRIP SPECKLED CUTOFF TANK
This Fit For A King cut off tank is so beautifully unique, you won’t be able to resist getting one for yourself. With a dip-dyed tip and low-cut arm sleeves, the Deathgrip Speckled tank top will ensure you stay cool and stylish while exploring various bands. Pair it with a strappy bralette and ripped jeans or some trendy cut-offs to really add to the overall effect of the awesome graphic.
STRONG MINDS – STAR WARS TEE Taking an epic movie twist, this Strong Minds Star Wars tee will be sure to elevate your style to a galaxy far far away. At only $9.95, the lightspeed tee will grab attention whether it’s for one of your favorite bands or for a rockin’ movie. Pair with jeans and combat boots and you’ll be ready for any occasion. If you love the band scene and want to join a community of music lovers who are excited about new, unique, and limited edition band merchandise, Absolute Merch is the brand for you. So get ready for the music festival of the year and get some tee’s that won’t just hang out in your closet, because these shirts will definitely be getting their share of sun. Read more Fashion News on ClicheMag.com Music Tour Fashion from Absolute Merch: Featured image and all images courtesy of absolutemerch.com
The room at the popular Orlando music venue, The Social, filled up quickly as the doors opened and the house lights dimmed. After the opening bandfinished their last song and exited stage left, Baltimore’s Have Mercy entered. They did one last 30-second soundcheck as the crowd crammed into the small space in front of the stage to witness Have Mercy deliver a raw, intimate, and passion-driven set.
Though the area was small, the heart for music was massive. Frontman Brian Swindle sang with everything he had and so did the people in the audience, and the rest of the band put all of their energy into creating a melodic space where fans could have the experience they had been waiting for since the announcement of the tour.
Watching everyone connect in the room and sing lyrics that meant something to each person individually, but meant so much more collectively, was an incredible sight and sound. There was no doubt that strangers that entered The Social left with a sense of community.
Moments like these are what make concerts what they are.
Read more Music News on ClicheMag.com Have Mercy at The Social in Orlando, FL: Photo Gallery by Imani Givertz
A dynamic trio, Nikki’s Wives is an alternative pop band from Toronto who is ready to set their talents mainstream. Coming together to create engaging, stimulating music, Nikki’s Wives has learned to use their shared interest of music to become a like-minded, unbeatable trio. With Nikki Whitehead as lead singer, Dylan Lauzon on the guitar, and Nate Baylor on the drums, the group reveals a well-orchestrated chemistry performance on stage. Nikki’s Wives has been busy recently with the release of their EP For E-V-E-R, features on Fox News and NBC, an invitation to Victoria’s Secret parties, and starring on OnestoWatch.com and Idobi Radio. Creating music that speaks to our innermost feelings, insecurities, and daily struggles, Nikki’s Wives will become your new favorite group to follow on their path to stardom. Here, they delve deeper into the emotions behind the haunting melody “Ghost,” chat about the complexity of relationships and confidence in “Lonely Being Cool,” and talk going on tour with CeeLo Green.
Cliché: What inspired you three to get together? What is the creative process like with three different voices? Nikki’s Wives: Nikki was doing this solo project and needed someone to play drums for one show. So, Dylan, who was working with Nikki at the time, called up Nate and asked if he could fill in. The show went super well and the three of us felt this insane chemistry playing together on stage. When the show ended, we all kind of concluded that this needed to be a band. The three of us have a great workflow while writing. It’s such an open and collaborative environment that everyone’s ideas always get heard. Since you guys have such great chemistry on stage, what advice do you have for aspiring music groups? I guess the only advice I can offer is to just play as many shows as you can. You can practice cool moves in the rehearsal space all you want, but the real magic comes from playing on stage in front of people. Going out on tour this summer really helped us find who we are on stage. Tell us about your EP For E-V-E-R and the process behind it. The story behind For E-V-E-R is actually kind of a crazy one. We booked the studio time before we had written any songs. So, we literally locked ourselves away for two weeks in Dylan’s basement to hammer out those six songs. I might also add that Dylan’s basement was unheated, and it was the coldest winter Canada had in like 10 years. Needless to say, For E-V-E-R definitely united us as a band. You recently toured with CeeLo Green. What was the experience like going on the road with a famous artist? Any funny stories while on tour? CeeLo was the most amazing person to go on tour with. His whole crew treated us like family and always made sure that we were well taken care of on the road. It was super cool to see this person you’ve grown up watching just being a normal person right in front of you. There were lots of nights where we all had a little too much tequila on that tour. [Laughs] Tell us about your track “Ghost.” After one listen, I was hooked! It is haunting, melodious, and entrancing. “Ghost” was the last song we wrote for For E-V-E-R, so it really encapsulates how we all felt about the writing process coming to an end. The two weeks spent in Dylan’s basement were just this whirlwind of creativity, and when that finally ended, we all felt this sadness about it. “Ghost” was kind of our goodbye song to the end of an amazing experience. I have noticed that you three often coordinate with colors. Do you think the influence of fashion can help artists? I think that fashion and music are very much intertwined. Fashion helps to visually separate groups from one another, and helps give them a unique identity. For example: Lady Gaga with her outrageous outfits or Billy Holly and his signature black frames. We like to keep to the guys wearing all white and Nikki wearing black. It’s a little play on the name “Nikki’s Wives.”
I think that fashion and music are very much intertwined. Fashion helps to visually separate groups from one another, and helps give them a unique identity.
What music are you currently listening to? Any favorite artists/bands? We’ve been all over the place lately. Honestly, in the van we listened to so many classic rock stations that I now feel like I was alive in the ‘70s. But we’re all listening to lots of Tory Lanez, ScHoolboy Q, and 2 Chainz right now. Tell us about the message behind your song “Lonely Being Cool.” The visuals for the music video are amazing and are parallel to the confident, determined vibe of the song. Basically, we just wanted to write a song that described the feeling of being at a party and feeling like you don’t fit in. I think everyone’s had that experience where you know you’re liked and have friends, but you feel like everyone hates you or has forgotten about you. But it’s also about being confident and being you no matter what. As a Canadian group, do you believe that you bring a different sound than other American groups? We just do what we like and make music that the three of us want to listen to. We don’t really spend a lot of time listening to Canadian vs. American music, and how different they are from one another. I think you just gotta do you and make the music you want to hear. What is the best advice you’ve received thus far in the music industry? The best advice I’ve ever received was to “never stop getting better, because as soon as you start thinking you’re hot shit, you become shit.” Can we expect any more music in the near future? Yeah! We already have another full EP waiting in the wings. If you catch us live, you can hear some sneak peaks from that EP.
Read more Music Interviews on ClicheMag.com Music, Touring, and More with Pop Band Nikki’s Wives: Photographed by Rachelle Curtis
I’ll have to admit: when I first discovered the up-and-coming band The Stolen, I found myself blasting their eclectic sound at max in my car. The pop-punk Jersey boys have a sound that perfectly combines Cliché faves The Maine and The 1975 with a twist of ‘90s rock and modern pop, all mixed into four incredibly talented musicians. The Stolen dropped their latest EP I’m So Dead in April along with a aesthetically pleasing music video for one of the five songs off the EP, “Can’t Get Enough.” Here, frontman Dom Cuce filled us in on who The Stolen is, their spring tour, and songwriting.
Cliché: For those who haven’t heard you guys yet, can you give us a rundown on who The Stolen is and what your band is about? Dom Cuce: We are a four-piece band from Old Bridge, NJ. We originally formed in 2005 playing cover songs of our favorite bands at the time. After years of playing together, we started writing our own songs and touring year round. What was it like to record your latest EP, I’m So Dead? The recording process for this record was a little different than what we have done in the past since we recorded a large portion of it ourselves. We tracked guitars with a guy named Mike Oettinger up in Union City, NJ, and then we tracked drums and vocals ourselves at a studio in Red Bank, NJ. Our guitarist Rob mixed the entire record and then we had it mastered by Robin Schmidt. Again, it was a lot different than the recording process in the past. We have never self-produced a record, so doing it was an amazing experience and we are extremely happy with how it came out. How has the response been from fans since you put out the EP? We’ve gotten an amazing response from our fans! Whether it’s through social media or them coming out to a show and singing along, the response to the new music has been great. We can’t thank them enough. Who writes the songs in your band? Is it a task for one specific person, or do you all jot down lyrics as a collective? When writing music, our process is a little different. Rob (guitar) will come to us with some lyrics and some chords on guitar, and if we are all vibing it, we go to work on the song, all making it our own. In my opinion, it’s a good way to create music because now we have four people throwing their ideas in and it allows us to create something we all love. We love how your sound has an alternative rock/R&B feel, especially in your single “Can’t Get Enough.” Who or what influences your sound? We take influence from so many bands and artists. I think it shows in the music we consume. In the van, we will listen to literally everything, and when I say everything I mean it. [Laughs] You’ll catch us listening to so many different artists from so many different eras and they all have an influence on the music that we create. You guys just wrapped up a spring tour. What was that experience like for you? The tour was amazing! It’s always a good time for us and we always look forward to going out on the road and seeing our fans. Speaking of touring, when can we catch you on the road again? Most likely this summer! What are some goals you guys have for the future of The Stolen? I would say to tour as much as we can and keep making music that is true to ourselves. How can we keep up to date with all that you’re doing? We are on every form of social media, so everyone could follow us there to stay up date. Read more MusicInterviews on ClicheMag.com Stealing The Spotlight: An Interview with The Stolen: Photographed by Kenny Lewis
Best described as brooding and gritty, the Florida-based band COLOURS, made up of vocalist Kyle Tamo and drummer Morgan Alley, is here to surprise and inspire. Tamo tells us about the creation of the band’s debut album, Ivory, and what it was like working with producer Shaun Lopez and fashion model Meghan Collison during the process.
Cliché: For those who haven’t heard your music yet, how would you best describe your sound? Kyle Tamo:I think the sound of COLOURS is best described as brooding. It’s dark pop with a gritty, electronic, R&B undertone.
What inspired the songs on your album Ivory? Would you say there is an over-arching theme? Inspiration inspired the album Ivory. COLOURS was formed around the idea of inspiring. With that in mind, the theme of the album has a very intense sensuality throughout.
Could you tell us about the creative process for the album? How was it working with producer Shaun Lopez? Working with Shaun Lopez could not of been more right for Ivory. He saw our vision very early on and jumped on board offering an amazing ear for tone and a mood to our
Tell us the story about your lead single “Monster.” What inspired it, and how did the idea for the music video come to be? “Monster” was written very early in the creation of Ivory. It encompasses the heart of the album in respects of mood and intensity. We knew from the beginning the video had to match such a vibe. The song speaks about the uncontrollable urge to be someone primal or visceral for someone else. When someone invokes a passion in you that makes you feel like someone you’ve never been, that is the atmosphere around “Monster.”
How was it working with fashion model Meghan Collison for the music video? How did she first get involved in the project? Meghan could not of been better to work with. Passionate, beautiful, brooding, and creative, she offered the visual representation of the song in every sense of the word. Meghan and I had been friends for years and have always been close. I always respected her vision and would constantly bounce ideas off her from the genesis of COLOURS. As kind as she is talented, she loved the idea of being in the video and went to great lengths to make it work for us.
If you could work or collab with anyone else someday, who would it be? I think any artist that respects his or her craft through every detail is someone we want to work with. Fashion designer, musician, movie director, painter… it doesn’t matter the art. If they respect the details, there is always something to learn from working together.
What else can we expect from you guys this coming year? I think COLOURS surprises anyone who gives it the opportunity. With that, we expect to surprise many this year. Offering a sound that inspires a lifestyle, we hope to reach as many ears and eyes as possible.
There’s a hunger, a craving, when we are longing for some sort of meaning in our lives. Some hope that we will find our way through and yet we never want to do it alone. Being the social creatures that we are, we desire someone to understand us, someone to bring us this feeling that we belong and that we are not alone. Music, somehow always manages to give us this and so we desire it like no other. Though there is never a shortage for the music that fills our world we always seem to want more. So, here at Cliché, we have listed 5 albums we can’t wait to listen to, and just have this feeling that they, too, will shed more light into our lives, just as music in the past has done time and time again
1. The Lumineers Album: Cleopatra Release Date: April 8, 2016 We know them from their hit single “Ho Hey” which was released all the way back in 2012. Now the anticipation is almost over as they make their way to releasing their second studio album, Cleopatra. You can preview their breathtaking song, “Ophelia,” the first song they released in 4 years, to get a small dose of what’s to come. Photo Credit: www.thelumineers.com
2. M83 Album: Junk Release Date: April 8, 2016 French electronic music band leader, Anthony Gonzalez, stated that this upcoming album will showcase a more intimate side, and yet less of him. The album title was created with the message of art being thrown away in certain manners with this imagery of “pieces of humanity floating in space, lost forever.” Photo Credit: www.ilovem83.com
3. Ariana Grande Album: Dangerous Woman Release Date: May 20, 2016
After the release of her title track, “Dangerous Woman,” Ariana Grande has been providing hints on what we can expect from her upcoming third studio album. With collaborators including Max Martin, Victoria Monet, Lil Wayne, and Macy Gray, it’s a given that we’re in for a treat when May arrives. Photo Credit: www.arianagrande.com
4. Blake Shelton Album: If I’m Honest Release Date: May 20, 2016 This upcoming album is promised to be the most personal one yet as Blake Shelton has explained that it takes a direct look into the last year of his life. If this is any indication that we’ll get more of a scoop on him and Miranda Lambert’s past relationship as well as his current one, I only have three words to say: Bring it on. Photo Credit: www.blakeshelton.com
5. Tegan and Sara Album: Love You to Death Release Date: June 3, 2016
After taking over the highest spot on 2013 Billboard charts with Heartthrob, these sisters are getting ready to release the follow-up album we’ve been waiting for. Though we don’t know too much of what Love You to Death will sound like, we do know that Tegan and Sara’s music is never a let down. Photo credit: www.teganandsara.com
Read more Music News at Clichemag.com
Making their way from Cape Town, South Africa to Nashville, Tennessee, Civil Twilight has stimulated the world of music with their soul-clenching vocals and compelling lyrics. With the release of their third studio album, Story of an Immigrant, this past summer, the band enlightened us with the melodies we have all been craving. In the midst of chaotic lives, relocation, and dealing with an industry that moves at the speed of lightening, Civil Twilight have proven that although they may have roots in South Africa, they have also established a place for themselves in the new city. In light of the album being named Story of an Immigrant, the harmonies showcase a world in which ordinarily extraordinary individuals are doing exactly what the rest of us are: trying to find a place to call home. In the midst of it all, they found themselves. Cliché: With originating the band in Cape Town, South Africa and adding another member, Kevin, to your group after relocating to Nashville, how has the change in culture impacted the music you create? Steven McKellar: I think it has impacted it in a lot of ways. When you absorb yourself in a new culture, you realize how much of your environment affects the way you feel. I think that changes my writing quite a lot. Plus, just growing older changes a lot of stuff, too! My writing, lyrically for instance, has moved towards the subject of people rather than landscape. I think that’s definitely a big change. Is the title Story of an Immigrant referencing the relocation of your band and the transition process? Would you consider that to be the overall theme of your album? Yes! When we put all of our songs together and tried to come up with a title, there was a recurring theme within all the songs—not about the physical relocation or being immigrants physically, but more about the spiritual journey. We’re all kind of just trying to find a home, and a home can be anywhere. We all have stories, and therefore, you kind of have this story of an immigrant. That’s definitely a theme in there. What has it been like touring with such big names in music? We’ve played a lot of shows, but playing with guys that we grew up listening to like Smashing Pumpkins, for instance, or Foo Fighters [was amazing]. It really makes you appreciate the journey that you’ve gone on, like going from being a little boy in Cape Town listening to songs on the radio to here, where we’re meeting these people and playing with them. It’s kind of strange. You feel like you’ve just been transported. It’s like if I close my eyes and imagine my 13-year-old chubby self sitting in my bed dreaming of that, and then, here I am, it’s pretty crazy! You do most of the songwriting in the band. Do you find that your writing technique has changed over the years? Very much so! I think it changed dramatically over the period of the last record, actually, just because we’ve been touring so hard for the first record, and then suddenly we got an email and a call from the label saying, “Can you guys put out a record soon?” So we kind of had to write on the road and we didn’t really have time to sit in a gauge for six months and jam. So that’s when I learned to write on a computer, which, you have to realize for me, I never had a computer before, until that point. So I was kind of like, “Okay, how do I do this?” But that changed a lot of things because I could basically arrange things myself and come up with a more precise structure. Lyrically, as I was saying earlier, the older you get, the more your interests change, and I think I’ve just become more intrigued with the landscape of the person rather than the person in the landscape. Did you write a lot growing up, prior to forming the band in high school? No, not as much as I should have. I wanted to be a jazz musician for the longest time and I didn’t really focus on songwriting. Even when I started doing it more, I wasn’t very lyrical. Now, lyrics intrigue me more than ever and I think that’s been a slow but growing passion. That’s certainly something that has changed as well. Sometimes I listen to my earlier songs and I’m like, “Eeee! My god, my lord! You’re not even thinking about what you’re writing about! You’re just putting a whole bunch of jibberish down.” But that sometimes works, you know. Definitely! So, what were some of the challenges you faced when writing this album? Do you ever have trouble comparing the success of your past songs when you are writing new ones, or do you approach each album with a new frame of thought? Yeah, we try to do that. It can be hard, but it’s exciting! What I find is that no matter how hard you try to throw yourself genre-wise, you’re always going to come back to what your heart is trying to say, even if your brain wants to say something else. You can’t really avoid what your heart wants to say, so I think that was always a recurring thing. I’m just attracted to certain feelings and certain colors and sounds and ideas, and that’s just who I am, but some of the times on this record, just actually having so much time to write was a real challenge. We decided to take a good chunk of time off and said, “Let’s just focus on writing.” We went through so many different stages during that writing period and it was quite challenging because usually you just have a deadline, which I work really well with. With a deadline, you just write the songs, put them down, and then move on. This was more like: write them, put them down, and then move on to writing and more putting down, and so we just had a mountain of songs. It was quite hard to actually to deck it all down, but it came together, eventually. Was it difficult to narrow it down with that many songs? What was the process of that like? Did some stand out more than others? Yeah, some did. It was quite a challenge though, because we had written about 50 demos and we twiddled it down to about 20 to record. Out of that 20, there were only two or three songs that all four of us agreed on! I don’t even know how we made the decision. It was quite painful, actually, but eventually, we just ran with it. It kind of came together when we recorded with Ben Allen and he was helping us hone the songs. You’ve mentioned in past interviews that your song “Letters from the Sky” was a turning point in your career. Is there a song on Story of an Immigrant that you are most proud of or think could impact your career as much as “Letters from the Sky” did Gosh, I hope so! I don’t know which one that would be because “Letters from the Sky” sort of came from left field. I didn’t see that coming at all! It wasn’t a contender by any means, and for some reason, people just latched onto it. If we have something like that on this record and have that kind of success, it would be amazing. Also, the industry has changed and doesn’t quite work the same way, so for me, I’m proud of the whole record in general. But there are a few songs that are a little more personal and there’s some that come off really good live. Do you have a favorite song you like to perform live? Whenever we perform “Oh Daniel,” it always just feels right. I don’t know why, but it just feels nice. Is there any part of you that misses the smaller demographic that you used to have? Were you able to be more personal in a different kind of way then, compared to now? I enjoy it all, really! I mean, getting into music is about being open and vulnerable to it. I’m down for that and I’m just really proud. I don’t think our fan base has necessarily grown very much over the last few years, but I think the age demographic has definitely broadened. That’s the strangest thing, but I think it’s pretty exciting and I’m proud of that. What would you guys hope to achieve next? The goal for now is just to tour this record, like we’re doing right now, and to do as much and as well as we can, and that’s kind of how we made our name over the last few years. We were just playing live and putting on good shows and that’s what we came to America to do. It’s like, if we keep going, I think there’s something special that happens over a long period of time when you keep delivering the same level of passion and love. Over time, people tend to just gravitate towards it. People always want to gravitate towards things that are a little more solid in the world, things that aren’t just fleeting. Deep down, I think people really desire a long-term connection with an artist and with a piece of work. So I think if we keep pushing and keep doing just that, we can achieve more. We’re all getting older and things are changing, but we all still enjoy it. One of the biggest plans right now is to just maintain the joy.
Read more Music Interviews at Clichemag.com Civil Twilight Discuss Their Album ‘Story of an Immigrant’: Photographed by Mason Poole
Vigorous and diversified sounds intersect with captivating lyrics to create authentic music that is notably hard to come by. With the self-production of their debut album, Feeling Electric, that was released June 2015, alt-electro band, Parade of Lights, have made a sudden rise in the music industry. Composed of Ryan Daly, Anthony Improgo, Randy Schulte, and Michelle Ashley, the L.A. based band wasted no time, packing their bags shortly after the album release to go on tour with AWOLNATION. Their genre-bending chords are layered effortlessly to create an alluring sound that brings simplified melodies to life. Referring to themselves as “360 Artists,” Parade of Lights are known for writing and producing their own music, designing their own album artwork and web graphics, along with creating their own lyric videos. Their self-sufficiency not only gives them an edge, but also the power to sufficiently channel creativity and express it on their own terms. Cliché: How did the four of you come together? Ryan Daly: Anthony, Randy, and I have known each other since 2006; we formed a band called Polus. We played locally (L.A.) for a year or so, until I dislocated my knee during a sold-out show at The Troubadour opening for Built to Spill. This led to us taking some time off and taking on touring gigs with established acts. Anthony and I kept crossing paths on tour until 2010, when we met in Australia and decided to pick up where we left off. We re-formed as Parade of Lights and reconnected with Randy. After a couple lineup changes, we met Michelle in 2013 and felt she was the perfect fit, which completed the lineup.
Growing up, was music always something you guys knew you wanted to pursue in the future? For the most part. Many things piqued my interest growing up, but music was the one constant. I think I speak for everyone in the band when I say it was always something we wanted to do. Do you assign yourselves different roles to get everything done or have a certain routine you follow? Yes, we all have our strong-suits, and we delegate as things can get pretty hectic at times. Anthony handles the web design/layout and video editing/compositing, I handle the production and photography/shooting video, Randy and Michelle handle our social media, and we all collaborate on writing and arranging. We all dip into each others’ areas to keep it cohesive. For this last record, we worked with Charles Bergquist on the images for the album art. He’s one of the few people we’ve worked with outside of the band, as we’ve been fans of his for a long time. What was the inspiration behind the name of your first studio album, Feeling Electric? The name comes from the title track; it’s a song about the feeling you get when you first meet someone you know is going to be significant to you. All of our songs tend to slant optimistic, and we noticed a positive arc across the album. We felt “Feeling Electric” summed it up well. Did you find there to be any great challenges or obstacles that had to be faced while producing the album? There always are. Most are related to time constraints. Self-producing an album is quite a hefty task, but it’s worth it in the end. I had an inner ear issue for a couple weeks right when we started recording, which wasn’t fun. It was a big relief once it subsided.
Now that you’ve wrapped up your tour with AWOLNATION, what was one of your most memorable moments and what was your strangest? This tour was the biggest we’ve done yet. It felt great to get in front of crowds that were truly responsive to a band that the majority of them had never heard. That was the highlight for us. As for strangest moments, one night we had an audience watch us load out. There were about 100 people in a smoking section outside the venue, right next to our van and trailer; they had all just watched our set. We loaded out directly onto the street and into the trailer after the show and they watched us and cheered. It was great, just something we’d never experienced before. Everyone was very supportive and we are grateful. What’s next for you guys? Over the past couple of years, we’ve been lucky enough to see our music resonate with people around the world. In 2016, we’re looking forward to touring and playing for as many of those people as possible.
Read more Music Interviews on Clichemag.com Parade of Lights Interview: Photographer: Charles Bergquist
The effortless creation of intuitive and soulful compositions are what The Neighbourhood’s music is known for. In fact, their lyrical explicitness has only flourished with the release of their second album, Wiped Out!. The band approaches each track with emotional rawness, showcasing the naked truth of a dark tale. With Wiped Out!, they have created a way to further explore the forms of depth and honesty that can be relayed by placing the right words in the right places. With this, they take their fans to the root of vulnerability, revealing the impact of moments that, until now, have been concealed. The Neighbourhood has never been one to sugarcoat their words, and with Wiped Out!, it can be argued that this isn’t going to change anytime soon. We got a chance to catch up with guitarist, Zach Abels, to find out more about the makings of the album and you can purchase the full album on October 30! Cliché: When we last spoke to you guys (August 2013), you had just wrapped up your first headlining tour, The Love Collection! A lot has definitely changed since then, but what is something you find has remained constant? Zach Abels: Making music. You guys have mentioned in a recent interview that the love songs on this album aren’t as “juvenile” or “stream of conscious” as they previously were. If you could, would you rewrite or change any of your previous lyrics? If so, what song(s) come to mind that you would change/rewrite? No, I wouldn’t take any of it back because you have to try things out and learn from them. “R.I.P. 2 My Youth” is a song where lead singer, Jesse Rutherford, opens up about his father’s death for the first time. Was there any signifying moment that led you guys to make the decision to include it in your music? Well, when Jesse’s dad passed away, he never really talked about it, and as he got older, I think it was just something that he felt like he needed to talk about. “R.I.P. 2 My Youth” was the right moment for him. “R.I.P. 2 My Youth” is also the last track in Wiped Out!, as well as the first single you released. Do you find that this song sets the tone for the rest of the album? No, I don’t. I [just] think it’s a song that needed to be on this record because it says a lot about us getting passed our youth and into our adulthood. I can imagine that coming up with a name for an album can be quite a challenging task! What led you to title the album, Wiped Out!? Did you guys find it difficult to agree on the title or come up with one? Yeah, it was quite challenging because we wanted it to be right, but we decided on Wiped Out! because of a few different things. One being, from constantly touring and writing our second record for around 10 months, we just felt wiped out. Two being, we wrote and recorded a good portion of it in Malibu for 3 months. So we were very influenced by the ocean and the beach because we would around it every day during that period. With naming your tour, The Flood, water is definitely a recurring element or theme that you’ve adopted for this album. Is there an underlying message you are trying to convey through this or a meaning behind it? Well, it’s called The Flood because all of the bands that are on this tour are from the same area. We all grew up in Southern California. So it’s supposed to mean that we’re taking a piece of our music scene and flooding whatever city we go to. What’s next for you? Is there a specific goal you guys are reaching towards, whether it be long-term or short-term? Just keep writing more music and keep getting better at it.
Check out more Music Interviews at Clichemag.com The Neighbourhood Interview: Photograph courtesy of thenbhd.com