#MuzikSpeaks: An Interview with Charly & Faust


   

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Charly&Faust are a band who mix psychedelia with blues to create a very unique sound. We had the chance to chat to them and find out a bit more about what inspires them, how they go about writing and recording their music and what they get up to before a show. It’s all here…


Hey, how’s it going?
Faust: Good thanks for spending some time with Charly&Faust.
Charly: Hello! It is going pretty well. Thanks to take the time to interview us.

What future plans have you got? Any new singles or an album in the pipeline?
Faust: We just released our EP ‘Wild World’ on all the music platforms. We are also about to record a new song that we are very excited about! We are lucky to work with two incredible people: Peace S. Nistades for the artistic production and Gerhard Westphalen for the mixes and masters.
Charly: We have a music video out called ‘No Rush’ which got nominated in a lot of festivals now. We are really proud and really lucky we were able to work with talented people (Mariano Schoedorff Ares as director, Zoé Pelloux as Producer and Ines Coca as Cinematographer).

Where do you take inspirations from when making your music?
Charly: Someone told me few years ago, “You can’t create music and Art in general if you stay in a recording studio and don’t live!”. It is exactly that. You need to live and get hurt to have things to say. I also discovered a new way to get inspired, which is making researches about events and topics I want to talk about. I am currently using this method for my solo EP and it is really fascinating where you can go by just reading other people.
Faust: Life is pretty much what inspires me, my experiences, my demons, my fears, my happiness…There are no rules really of where I take inspirations.

What’s your usual process for writing/recording?
Charly: In Charly&Faust, Faust is the one coming to us with lyrics and then we are working all together on the structure and the melodies. For the recording part, we are usually starting with the rhythmic section (Coralie Hervé on Drums and Eric Reymind on Bass), then we are recording my rhythm guitar, Jefferson Fichou does the lead guitar and finally Nathan Lorber comes in for the keys. After all that we are focusing on the lead vocals with Faust, which can take some time because we are always trying to improve our harmonies and melodies. After all that recording part, we are producing the songs by adding several other instruments with Peace S. Nistades.
Faust: I like to be by myself usually when I’m writing a song, in a quiet space. I need to be in my own bubble. When the lyrics are ready, I work on the melody with Charly. This part is so important in our band. We need to be just the both of us first to really be able to present a piece that Coralie, Eric, Jeff and Nathan can work on. Because of all that preparation and work, the song pretty much ready before we get to the recording session. 

If you could do a collaboration with anyone, who would it be and why?
Faust: I’d love to do a collaboration with Lana del Rey! I love her style and she inspires me lot as well
Charly: Tracy Chapman, P!nk, Tegan & Sara

What music have you been listening to most recently?
Faust: For the last few days, I have been listening to James Brown.
Charly: We just lost a wonderful French artist called Johnny Hallyday. I am rediscovering his music now. He was an extraordinary singer and an amazing showman.

If you had to cover a recent chart song, which song would it be and why?
Charly: ‘Dommage’ from Big Flo & Oli, or ‘What About Us’ from P!nk.
Faust: I don’t know if ‘Stay’ by Rihanna is recent enough but that would be a good one for a cover. I just love the vibes and the melody of that song, I can already see how to make this one with Charly&Faust’s style.

What makes a great show for you?
Faust: Connection with the band members and the audience.
Charly: A stage, an audience, and a lot of alcohol and cigarets *laughs*.

Do you have any pre-show or post-show rituals?
Charly: Having a drink with the band, jamming with them, and Faust doing our tribal make ups. You are going to be able to discover all that in our Vlog #2 on our YouTube channel!
Faust: I like jamming before a show and doing some warm up voice exercises. 

Has anything scary ever happened to you on tour?
Faust: Not really because I haven’t done a tour with Charly&Faust yet, but maybe soon!!
Charly: Couple of stuff happened when I was touring for other artists, but not with Charly&Faust yet. My biggest fear would be to loose my guitar during the trip! It would be a real nightmare! 

Do you have any other passions outside of music?
Charly: Food, gardening, my pets! I know I am already a grandma!
Faust: I love dancing, this is the best way to actually express yourself universally. You don’t need words! But I love writing songs though *laughs*. 

What really grinds your gears?
Faust: Violence towards animals.
Charly: Tags! Who needs to be tagged by someone else to find who they really are? 

What’s the best film you’ve seen lately?
Faust: Logan Lucky by Steven Soderbergh.
Charly: The Broken Circle Breakdown by Felix Van Groeningen. 

If, in say 20 years time, a film was made about your life, who would you want to play you?
Charly: Myself! I think nobody else would be interested in the role *laughs*. My life is boring and I am working hard to keep it this way!
Faust: Alicia Vikander.

If you could be any chocolate bar, which one would you be?
Faust: Dark chocolate almond.
Charly: A chocolate bar from Switzerland because they make the best quality chocolate. And I’m half Swiss.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Charly: Do what you want to do and if someone is judging you they can go fuck themselves!
Faust: Never have any regrets!


Charly & Faust‘s releases are all available:


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#Review: Story Of The Year – Wolves


   

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Story Of The Year first captivated my attention with their debut album, Page Avenue, back in 2003. Since then the band have had a string of albums, been involved in a whole host of side-projects, taken a hiatus, reformed and run a successful PledgeMusic campaign, which all lead to this, their sixth studio album, Wolves.

SOTY - Wolves.jpg

The album opens with the title track, ‘Wolves’, which sounds like some sort of background, cinematic sound effects from a horror film, before leading into the intense, fast-paced, gang-vocal-packed song, ‘How Can We Go On’, which perfectly represents the band’s roots in alternative/hard rock. From there, the album weaves its way brilliantly throughout a whole range of powerful, thrashing, metal-like songs and emotionally-driven, rock ballads that you just can’t help but want to belt out loud.

One thing’s for certain; the band have truly poured out their honest feelings and inner-most emotions into every track on this record. It’s also the band’s first album to be recorded in pieces, across several, separate locations, meaning they could really afford to take their time to focus and perfect the sound they wanted to achieve. The album title, Wolves, was chosen to embody the concept of life circling you and closing in on you, just like a pack of wolves.

Some of my favourite and most stand-out tracks on the album have to be, ‘Bang Bang’ (dubbed “a fast-paced, electro-infused rager complete with a catchy chorus” by AltPress), ‘Youth’ (which is a short guitar track that feels anthemic beyond words), ‘I Swear, I’m Okay’ (a synth-driven ballad-esque belter), ‘Can Anybody Hear Me’ (probably one of the catchiest tracks on the record and a real sing-along tune) and ‘Like Ghosts’ (which is just epic and in places the use of synths remind me a little of the Stranger Things theme – this song was born to be in a movie).

Undoubtedly, the quartet have demonstrated how committed they are to making what could well be the best album since their debut.

The record was produced by Aaron Sprinkle (Anberlin, New Found Glory, Acceptance) and mixed by none other than Tom Lord-Alge and J Hall – which probably explains why it sounds particularly epic! It soars to incredible heights and tantalises the melancholic heart-strings in all the right places.

Undoubtedly, the quartet have demonstrated how committed they are to making what could well be the best album since their debut. It’s an inspired body of work that shows off a real depth to their songwriting and evolution in their style. They have managed to record a soundscape of vulnerability, fear and anxiety and present it in a really exhilarating and cohesive body of music. This is certainly an album not to be missed.

Rating
4


‘Wolves’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/wolves/1300989796


Wolves on Spotify

Coming tomorrow. 

‘Bang Bang’ (Official Audio)

‘I Swear, I’m Okay’ (Official Audio)


We hope you’ve enjoyed this review of Story Of The Year’s latest album! What are your thoughts about it? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or chat to us about it via our social media.


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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#EventSpeaks: Tom Walker @ Green Door Store, Brighton – 28/11/17


   

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Fresh after being added to the Longlist of BBC Music’s Sound of 2018, Tom Walker came to Brighton on the penultimate date of his UK tour. He was supported by up-and-comers, Tors, at The Green Door Store, on Tuesday 28th November 2017 and it was not a night to be missed!


Tors

This band were incredibly exciting – a trio of brothers, born in Brighton and living between London and Devon, they had a very polished sound!

The vocal harmonies the brothers used were remarkably tight and it’s clear that they have worked hard to Perfect this.

The songs themselves were well written and their on-stage presence and chemistry was excellent (I guess being brothers helps). The best way to describe their sound is ‘warm’ – it gives you a great feeling just to hear their beautiful melodies and intricate instrumentation. Definitely check out their music online and catch them live if you get the chance.

Highlight: It was amazing just how full the trio’s sound was, using just 3 guitars, sample pads and a few live drums – I particularly enjoyed the combination of sample pads and live drums.


Tom Walker

It is without a doubt that Tom Walker has already built himself up a very loyal following, which was evidenced by the fact that the show was a sell-out and virtually everyone in the place was singing along to every word.

I have to admit that I myself didn’t know too many of his songs prior to going and those that I did know, were along the more mellow lines but I was (pleasantly) surprised to find that his set was packed with quite a few intense, rock-fuelled tunes and some rather insane guitar solos too! The audience were revelling in his heavier songs, skanking out like crazy, whilst his mellower efforts provided an opportunity for the crowd to flex their vocal muscles.

One thing is for certain; this event was definitely something special – it truly felt like we were witnessing the beginning of this guy becoming a big household name and I have to agree with the BBC; I predict big things for him in 2018 – I can’t wait to see what next year holds for this talented artist!

Highlights:

  • The perfection of the set was immense – it was incredible to see how just three people could create such a full and all-encompassing sound.
  • ‘Angels’ was something really special – I reckon this could be a massive, hit single for him – you need to see this live! You could tell that this song gives Tom a buzz too as he was grinning from ear to ear after performing it.
  • Tom got the crowd to shout back, “Fuck it,” during his performance of ‘Rapture’ and the sheer intensity of the crowd’s enjoyment at doing this was a marvel to behold.
  • Whilst the stage at Green Door Store is relatively small, Tom and his band sure made the best of it and I loved the use of his lighting tubes to bring a bit of diversity to the visuals.
  • The bassist’s facial expressions were hysterical – I couldn’t tell whether he’d smelt something unpleasant but was sadistically enjoying it, or he was just lost in the moment, but it sure had some of the crowd amused. Jokes aside, a great musician!
  • The amalgamation of backing tracks and sample pads as well as the live instruments was sensational – kudos to the drummer for his use of the sample pads and blending it with the drums.
  • Straight after the show, Tom took the time to chat to his fans and take photos with them outside the venue – he seemed like a really genuine guy, who was grateful for everyone’s support. It was out here that I heard him mention his debut album would be quite a bit heavier than some of the previous songs he’s released – this was reflected in his live set but I left the show with a real excitement to hear it!

Tom Walker & Matt Wright.JPG


 Setlist

Sun Goes Down
Fly Away
Just You & I
Blessings
Angels
Karma
Play Dead
Heartland
Rapture
Leave A Light On

Encore
Me, Myself & I


Finally, I want to say a massive thanks to Jake Tasker for helping to make this review happen and to Tom Walker himself for the incredible show he put on; it was truly amazing!

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#Review: Maroon 5 – ‘Red Pill Blues’


   

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Maroon 5 are one of the biggest bands on the planet and in my eyes they just go from strength to strength. Each album manages to change just enough to move with the current trends in music yet somehow they still manage to maintain their unique identify. This album is a far cry from their debut, Songs About Jane, but it’s still somehow classic Maroon 5.

Red Pill Blues (Deluxe)

The tone for Red Pill Blues is set by the opening track, ‘Best 4 U’, which has a very 80s feel to it with it’s synths and spacey atmosphere, yet somehow it’s still very current.

There’s no mistaking it, this album is less in-your-face about it’s pop nature than some of their previous releases but it’s an incredibly well-crafted record. It is filled with sensual tracks like ‘Lips On You’ (which for some reason really evokes vibes of Phil Collins for me), ‘Wait’, which has a sublime groove to it, married with Adam’s sensational falsetto vocals that just ascend with perfection and then there’s the 11-minute epic track, ‘Closure’, which sees the band break into an extended jam, to close the album. The rather understated, ‘Who I Am’ (featuring LunchMoney Lewis) has a somewhat similar feel to some of the tracks on the band’s debut album while ‘Girls Like You’ is a very catchy song with it’s gang vocals and intense use of acoustic guitar strumming. That’s without even mentioning the massive single, ‘What Lovers Do’, which is just epic!

Not like anything you’ve heard from them before – it’s a sensational, modern-pop record!

Then there’s the deluxe version of the album which contains bonus tracks such as singles ‘Don’t Wanna Know’ and ‘Cold‘ as well as the unreleased tracks ‘Denim Jacket’‘Visions’ and ‘Plastic Rose’ – if you’re a hardcore fan of the band, then you’re definitely going to want this version! ‘Denim Jacket’ has a gospel feel to it, ‘Visions’ is very reggae in its groove, whilst ‘Plastic Rose’ is very current with a deep house tone to it.

It has a very modern pop record and whilst on some tracks you forget they’re actually a full band, others make up for it with their funky bass sounds, soulful guitar licks or acoustic guitar rhythms. The use of different producers hasn’t detracted from it being an eclectic yet comprehensive record.

I would say that this album has a rather mellow and modest feel to it throughout but it’s still a sensational, modern-pop record! You should most definitely check it out – it’s not like anything you’ve heard from them before.

Rating
4


‘Red Pill Blues’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/red-pill-blues-deluxe/id1292455301


Red Pill Blues on Spotify

 ‘What Lovers Do’ featuring SZA (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review of Maroon 5’s latest album! What are your thoughts of this latest release? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or talk to us about it via our social media.


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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#MuzikSpeaks: An Interview with James Walsh from Starsailor


   

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When Starsailor visited Brighton’s Concorde 2 on their All This Life Tour, I had the great privilege of chatting to James Walsh, backstage, before the show (check out our review).

We chatted all about the inspirations behind the band’s latest album, All This Life, who he’d most like to collaborate with and discussed the weirdest question he’s ever been asked. It’s all here…



Starsailor‘s releases are all available:


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#Review: Prides – A Mind Like The Tide, Pt. 1 (EP)


   

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Prides are a Scottish indie band who originally formed in Glasgow, in 2014, as a three-piece. The act is now comprised of Stewart Brock (lead vocals and keys) and Callum Wiseman (guitar, keys and backing vocals). Since releasing their debut album, The Way Back Up, in July 2015, the pair have worked hard on creating their next release; a two-part album, starting with this, the first half, A Mind Like The Tide – Pt. 1.

A Mind Like The Tide, Pt. 1

The EP opens with ‘Every Story Of Mine Is A Story Of Yours…’ – led by an ethereal synth, the track builds beautifully to a quite cinematic climax comprised of chest-rumbling bass notes, Stewart’s trademark crooning and a collection of people speaking the title of the track, repeatedly. This is surely going to become the song which opens the set for the pair’s live performances, for the foreseeable future and it’s easy to see why…it’s just oozing with atmosphere!

Overall, this EP is an eclectic mix of songs, from the unashamedly feel-good pop qualities of lead single ‘Let’s Stay In Bed All Day’ to the slightly more chaotic and almost grungy moments found in ‘Sweet Time’. I particularly love the energy and catchiness of ‘You’re The Drug’ (which could easily be another single), whilst both ‘A Wilder Heart’ and ‘I Know That I Can Change’ are emotionally charged and ascend to euphoric climaxes. My only criticism of the EP is the fact that ‘I Don’t Ever Want To Live Without You’ feels a little like an interlude (though it’s still a track which remains true to the essence of the band). That, paired with the opening track being more of an intro, you’ve essentially got 5 brilliant, new, sing-a-long tracks. It’s still a great release though and I’m certainly left intrigued to hear the second part of the album, around March next year.

The quality of the production throughout is remarkable and it’s a really comprehensive collection of tracks. Towards the end of ‘You’re The Drug’ there is an incredible break in the beat and just when you think it’s going to drop back in (as is predictable in so many songs), it doesn’t…it keeps you waiting and I love the originality of this! The calming, break in ‘Sweet Time’ is bewitching and melodic with it’s acoustic guitar, synths and falsetto vocals, right before it kicks back in to the heavy guitars and punchy chorus. Lastly, the delicate way ‘I Know That I Can Change’ begins with it’s atmospheric sounds and gradually becomes a massive stadium-filling anthem – it is just the perfect way to close the EP.

This is undoubtedly a brilliant release from the pair and certainly doesn’t disappoint. It may have been a couple of years since their debut album but it’s clear they have spent time working on their songwriting and developing their style. It’s also nice to see that despite a string of stand-alone singles, they haven’t just piled them onto this EP, to pad it out. It’s a beautiful release, crafted with major love and fine attention to detail.

Rating
4


‘A Mind Like The Tide, Pt. 1’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/a-mind-like-the-tide-pt-1/id1295669547


‘A Mind Like The Tide, Pt. 1’ on Spotify

Let’s Stay In Bed All Day (Official Audio Video)


Hopefully you have enjoyed our review of Prides‘ latest EP release! What are your personal thoughts of the EP? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment below or via our social media and don’t forget to share this think. Thanks 😀


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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#EventSpeaks: Will Joseph Cook @ The Haunt, Brighton – 17/10/17


   

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On Tuesday 17th October 2017, Will Joseph Cook, came to Brighton to perform a set in support of his debut album, Sweet Dreamer, as well as play a couple of new songs from his upcoming EP. He was supported by Indigo Husk at the popular Brighton venue, The Haunt.


Indigo Husk

The band took to the stage with their grungy, give-a-damn appearance and although the crowd seemed a bit reticent to begin with, after a couple of songs, they had been worked up a treat, with the band’s funky brand of grunge-pop. The lead singer’s occasional ‘whoops’ and sarcastic quips were amusing, whilst the drummer was possibly one of the most engaging band members I’ve ever seen – he was witty, enthusiastic, provided great backing vocals and oozed personality through his crowd interaction. Sadly the same can’t quite be said for the bassist, who barely cracked a smile throughout and the concentration on Flynn’s face looked almost uncomfortable for him, at times. That’s not to say it was a bad performance or that they’re not a good band; it makes them who they are and they were certainly fun to watch.

Highlight:

The drummer – he was captivating and I particularly enjoyed the moments he stood up whilst drumming, taking every opportunity to interact with the audience.


Will Joseph Cook

Will Joseph Cook is a fantastic performer and his unique blend of indie vibes, electronic synths and pop hooks make for one heck of a funky, dance-infused performance.

The moment he appeared on stage, the audience burst into rapturous applause – one thing’s for sure, Will Joseph Cook has worked incredibly hard to build up a dedicated and loyal following, evidenced by the fact that the show had sold out.

His vocals were on point and his working of the stage was controlled and at times even mesmerising. I like that he is able to switch between playing the guitar and singing (which can be quite static) on some songs, whilst on others, he ditches the guitar and works the crowd – it’s great to see this diversity in his performance.

The songs he played sounded just as good as his recordings and at times, Will and the band added a nice leading intro into a song, adding something unique that you could only see and hear if you watch him live.

Not only has Will Joseph Cook produced an incredibly strong debut album (Sweet Dreamer) but his performances are remarkably captivating too. He is definitely worth watching live – make sure you catch his show next time he’s near you.

Highlights:

  • Usually I like it when there’s a lot of between-song banter from the band or artist, but Will kept this to a minimum, playing song after song, keeping the audience dancing and singing along.
  • Getting to hear a couple of his new tracks, live, was great!
  • His performances of ‘Plastic’‘Girls Like Me’ and new song, ‘If You Want To Make Money’, all really stood out to me.
  • Will and the band’s abilities to make the live renditions sound just as good as the recordings.

 📷 All of the fantastic photos in this post are credited to Elliot McRae. 📷
Go on and give him a follow – @EMcraePhoto


 Setlist

Biggest Fan
Alive
Sweet Dreamer
Treat Me Like A Lover*
Plastic*
Habit
Take Me Dancing
If You Want To Make Money*
Fish*
Daisy Chains
Beach

Encore
Message
Girls Like Me*

*These songs can be viewed in the YouTube playlist, below.


Finally, I want to say a MASSIVE thanks to Isobel Williams from Whiteboard PR for setting up this review and to Will Joseph Cook and Indigo Husk for putting on a great evening.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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