A chat with City Weezle’s Simon Fleury

Alternative, Experimental, Folk, Interview, Metal, Prog, Rock

With a new record approaching close over the horizon, and numerous hungry fans to feed, we sat down with City Weezle frontman and founder, Simon Fleury; chatting everything from cabin fever to Japanese pentatonic scales!

AM: What would you say are the key differences between your debut record and the upcoming No.2?

SF: This album certainly has less Primus and Mr.Bungle influence. Even though we can still hear some Patton/Primus/Bungle colours in there. There are certainly more keyboard and piano sounds on this one thanks to the wizardry of Axel Steinbiss and CSL Parker; two excellent players/composers. CSL really encouraged me to get back on the City Weezle stuff and taught me free form improvisation which is super fun and it had been a long time since I’d done a lot of improv. For those things I’m very grateful and, of course, for his parts on the album..

It was so much fun working with Axel, he’s super zoned in and could just do anything. He composed some really cool key lines for the album and pulled really amazing takes out of the bag; all in his stride, He’s also one of the funniest guys I’ve ever met, Germans not being funny is a post-war myth. We’ve just had a Hitler joke we put in our press kit published in a review of German Punk Magazine so I think the proof is in the pudding there ;).

This one was recorded in many different places over a much longer period of time whereas «Taboo» was recorded all in the same place in the space of about a year. I think this one is definitely less chaotic, intentionally so, ‘Cluedo’ is the final track on this album and it fulfils the role of the track that brings the crazy. Of course, there’s a bit of craziness in all our stuff in different ways.

She’s a Stomper’ is our most straightforward rock song and I really dig it. It’s got a very Melvinsy feel. We haven’t really released a straight hard-hitting rock song before and this is certainly a new feel to our catalogue. In any case these are eight new diverse tracks we’re 100% happy with and can get behind and I can’t wait to perform them live.

AM: What do you think you learnt as a musician from writing No.2?

SF: From an educational perspective, I learned to write string quartet lines and it’s given me a better vision of how to approach orchestration for other instruments in the future I’ll definitely be delving into that a bit more on certain tracks.

It’s also given me a second round of collaborating with guest musicians which was also really cool and I’m really grateful to everyone who put a little piece of their magic onto this album.

AM: Did you encounter any challenges while writing/recording No.2? How did you overcome them?

SF: Yes there were many barriers to making this album not least the distance between all the personnel. It’s certainly one of the reasons why it took so long. Mixing this album at distance with Gautier Serre (Igorrr) was a lot of bouncing mixes back and forth and that was definitely the hardest part from my perspective.

But I really want to thank Gautier and think it was worth it as he did a great job, he’s responsible for the album having a great quality of sound. There were obstacles and a lot of flights booked to record this one but as with anything worthwhile it took motivation and perseverance to overcome those obstacles and finally get to the result we wanted.

AM: How would you describe the most dominant emotions coming from No.2?

SF: I’d say like most of our music it has a theatrical energy and there are moments of mystery and emotion. The most personal and emotional song for me is “Even Weezles get the Blues”. It was a very alcohol-fueled part of my life where I’d just split with my GF when I wrote that track and was feeling the solitude of those emotions. So while it seems like a funny upbeat track it actually has a very deep meaning for me.

In a fun way, I guess it’s me singing about my problems back then, therefore the song title makes perfect sense.

AM: Do you have a general songwriting method that you stick to or does it come from within the moment?

SF: Well I have different methods of composing and I don’t like to stick to just one. Sometimes I’ll write mostly the music first and then only have one or two vocal hooks along the way while imagining what the vocals will sound like. Sometimes more recently I’ve been finding vocal ideas first and then just finding the music to suit the vocals and I think it works really well. Like ‘She’s a stomper’ was mainly written like that.

Igorrr has done some composition sections within our tracks on “Taboo”. Sometimes we’ll create things as a band in a rehearsal room and take each other’s ideas and develop them or alter them.

I have a method of composing I’m sure other bands like “The Ruins” use too maybe? It’s to record an improvisation and have the other instruments learn it and record over it.

I call it “Comprovising”! So you record an improv and the other instruments record over it in a structured manner. So it sounds tight enough to be written but comes from a completely spontaneous performance. We’ll certainly be fitting it in on future tracks.

AM: Do you have any interesting or funny stories from the recording process?

SF: We tracked the drums and guitars out in this lovely little cottage in a very remote area in the Nyre Valley in Co.Waterford, nearly Bally Macarby.

Many thanks to The Fabie Family and Henstep McGrath of “Crow Black Chicken” for letting us use the place for recording, it was a really nice little drum room in the upstairs of the little cottage called “Gypsies Cottage”out there you get a real old Ireland feel, it’s kinda like going back 50 years in time.

A pub with a shop attached to it and the people to match, it was really cool. So we were very isolated out there, no phone signal, no internet just the basic equipment I had and the tunes to be recorded. We recorded the drums in the space of two days out there with “Ai Uchida”, all credit to him he’s a great guy and an amazing drummer!

I went out there to track the guitars for “She’s a stomper” by myself and it was a completely different ball game. I started getting cabin fever as they call it. It was like the Shining except I didn’t even have my wife or kid! With no internet and no telephone connection, it felt really really weird. I stayed at it for about two days and then got super depressed, scrapped everything and came back to civilisation

But it was very fun tracking out there with the lads other than that whacky experience!

AM: Can you tell us what it was like to work with Gautier Serre a.k.a Igorrr on this project?

SF: When I decided to get making this album I hit him up straight away with the question, ‘Would you be game for mixing and mastering it?’ Cause he’d done our 1st LP “Taboo” and I think he did a great job.

Plus I trust his ear. He’s a guy who’s been making top quality albums since I met him so I trust him on that front. He knows how to balance things well and get really great sounds. So I was delighted when he agreed to do it. Even though we did all of this at distance bouncing things back and forth and I haven’t seen him in ages I’d still consider him a friend. He was always super supportive of us and even jumped in a van to drive us around Europe for the Taboo tour.

He threw in a few little sprinkles of sound on No.2 where he saw fit and I think it worked out really well that way.

AM: How was City Weezle originally formed?

SF: Initially, I met a really wicked prog guitarist, Sylvain Ducloux, AKA ”Cloux” in ATLA music school in Paris where I was taking courses and he made this really insane prog guitar album called “Full Fool” and he invited me to do some vocals on a few tracks.

That was my first time participating on a professional quality recording – up until then I’d just done my own demos on my 8 track where I’d play all the instruments for the most part. From those demos, I had a bunch of tracks that I wanted to make a fusion band with and I selected those tracks to make the 1st demo of CW with “Cloux” on guitar, Eric Carrere on drums and Maxime Gilbon on Bass.

Eric Was playing with Cloux at the time and he’d done drums on my Demos too. Max and I used to mess around playing covers of queens of the stone age and Primus with this other summer. I feel lucky that I’m still very close friends with those guys to this day. They’re great people and great musicians.

AM: How did music first enter your life? Do you have any standout memories?

SF: The first song I remember hearing as a kid is that “Dire Straits” track “Walk of life”; I must have been about four, it was on the radio and my mother was cutting celery. Every time I heard that song after that I would get the smell of celery and, vice versa, every time I’d get the smell of celery it’d bring that famous keyboard line of that song into my head. I only really started getting into music around age nine or 10 when I got into Nirvana.

Before then I’d had a few of those Now compilations. Discovering Nirvana was obviously a life-changing moment as it was for us all. Shorty after I got into Metallica and Alice in Chains, another pivotal moment was discovering Mr. Bungle Age 16; I’d discovered Zappa shorty before then.

There was also a legendary singer song writer named “Warwick Embury”. He wasn’t famous but he really should’ve been.. He was good friends with Donovan and had come from the really thriving music scene in the UK to live in Tipperary, Ireland.

I imagine he wanted to get away from the hustle-bustle of London and found solace in Tipp. English guy, real deal rock and roll legend who used to come round to our house and sing tunes and improvise lyrics and he was super fun and entertaining. He was a very fun, very cool guy, real heart and soul of the party. He wrote great songs and he was a massive influence on me too. Unfortunately he’s passed away now but he left a lot of great happy memories. His music lives on. I’d advise anyone to go and check out his stuff. Really great songs.

AM: I’ve seen that you’re a Francophile and also becoming fascinated by Japanese culture! Is this something that you think has ever leaked into your music or could do so in the future?

SF: Yes that’s 100% accurate I’ve always been into the french language and now I’m a fluent french speaker. I learned it from having lived over there for years. That’s where City Weezle was initially founded and I still have great friends over there.

Yes it’s worked its way into our music a bit. On our latest album No.2 on the 3rd track Maestro Mafioso, at the intro of the song I have some lyrics in french and I sing them with Pedral and Mina of “Vladimir Bozar ‘n’ ze Sheraf Orkestar” one of my favourite bands!

We also do a rock cover of a french pop song “l’amour a la plage” there’s a version of it on the “Lysergik tea party” EP; there’ll definitely be some more french stuff in future!

Yes, it’s only now I’m starting to learn some Japanese and am very fascinated by Japanese Culture. I feel very lucky to have two great Japanese members in the band and really looking forward to gigging over there with the lads and learning more about the culture. Musically I’ve only learned the Japanese minor pentatonic scale and I wrote a really cool sounding intro with it once – we might break that out of the bag and make it something hopefully. Look forward to learning and hearing more.

AM: How do you believe that City Weezle fits into the prog scene?

SF: We initially come from the underground scene in France where Igorrr, Pryapism Vladimir Bozar and all these bands were kind of our contemporary’s. I think our music is quite diverse and will remain so we can be appreciated by the open-minded members of many different types of audiences.

I could see us opening up for any band we’d cite as an influence and fitting the bill very well, I think we fit in many places; we’re a fun band and we put on a fun show! It should fit right in everywhere. (Probably not in all-metal show line up but we’ve done it before and didn’t get murdered by an axe-wielding maniac, but who knows? Maybe next time it’ll happen 😉

AM: What is the main mission statement of City Weezle?

SF: Our mission is to keep people entertained as fuck and bring this super fun music to as large an audience as possible in this lifetime all while sharing the love of the music we love and the influences we channel through our music.

I believe it was Frank Zappa who said “Music is the Best”.

Words by Alex Mace

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‘Space Art and Angels’: Wavewulf’s Cosmic Soundtrack

Electronic, Experimental, Synth

If I wasn’t aware that Wavewulf was from New Jersey, I would’ve assumed somewhere different. Somewhere frustratingly non-specific and vague, like saying you’re ‘from London’ to someone who is also from London – that’s just not enough detail. Wavewulf is from Space, and no amount of conflicting information can convince me otherwise. He says he’s American, but would an alien reveal themselves to the public? No.

‘Space Art and Angels’, the latest release from the synth wizard, feels like it might be the soundtrack for a 90’s sci-fi novel. Ebbing and flowing and pulsing and jittering, a story is told. There is romance, as is heard through the aptly named My One True Love, alongside terror in Venus’s Winter Light III. Warring motifs like these make for a narrative journey, rather than a cobbled-together collection of works. 

The use of real, analogue synths elicits a reaction that I imagine Wavewulf would be pleased with – they’re completely noticeable. Often instruments can get lost in a swamp of over-indulgent song writing, but not here. The synths are allowed to breathe and, in doing so, reveal a deft arranging touch. It can be all too easy to fall in to the trap of adding layer after layer after layer (especially in electronica), but Wavewulf has shown that restraint is a vital part of sculpting a believable fantasy.

Wendy Carlos and Kraftwerk fans rejoice, this is something to bathe in. The textures sound considered and deliberate. Despite its off-world theme, the comfort provided by this album is real and oddly familiar. It’s like decades of sci-fi in film and on TV have given us the context we need to understand the otherworldly Wavewulf. If pop-culture weren’t filled with spaceships and time warps, nebulas and supernovas, maybe Wavewulf would be too confusing. But no, I understand it and I’m glad that I do. Feel free to reveal your true origins, Wavewulf, I know you aren’t from round here (and by ‘here’ I mean Earth).

You can follow Wavewulf in the following places:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/netnik808
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wavewulf/
Website: https://wavewulf.com/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/nicholas-long-10
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/14Ga39ZZGbQatNaqTcaloq
Youtube:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGHnDwx0pV_3V9C5FNRHfVg

Words by PJ Kimber

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No Limit To InHibit: Alt Rock Artist Releases New Single, The Quest.

Alternative, Experimental, Rock, Singer-Songwriter

When you first lay eyes on this very abstract and insightful music video by the ever-challenging artist Inhibit, you are faced with a black screen that fades into a face full of scars. A frightening thought, right?

Describing himself primarily as a poet, Inhibit has studied the piano since he was five years old. Based in Brussels, the 21-year-old boasts an unusual background as a former racing driver and qualified lawyer – highly retrospective of his peculiar and unpredictable style of music.

Plastered with scars on his face and his back, ‘The Quest’ depicts Inhibit as a complete outsider who walks around a city wearing a mask though, upon revelation of his true face, everyone he approaches turns and runs in disgust.

Hurtling towards 400,000 YouTube views in less than one month, ‘The Quest’ sees InHibit examining the hypocritical reactions of those around him to his real persona, when how he is treated when not hidden behind a mask.

Watch the Eye-Popping Video to The Quest here: 

Composed by the artist himself and featuring his keyboard and vocal skills, the video too was his own creation, featuring his own scarification designs and storyboard. His first book is to be released shortly, as well as a collection of his poetry.

For all things Inhibit, please be sure to follow their social media below:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/inhibitofficial/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/inhibitofficial/

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-665546627

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/5ZELT1P81Usj8rIDc9BDOO?si=gCF4mMUJSkGfMDOQy7UDQw

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIHadk3BW40&feature=youtu.be

Check out the latest episode of The Quite Great Radio Show

Episode 3 of ‘Just Checking In’ is now out – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8pNt2GF_LcA&t=197s

CRUEL – THE ROCK OPERA NOT TO BE MISSED

Experimental, Music, News, Rock, Rock n Roll

ONE NIGHT ONLY: CRUEL – GET TICKETS NOW!

https://dice.fm/event/6evab-cruel-the-rock-opera-22nd-oct-troxy-london-tickets

The one night only show coming to The Troxy in London on the 22nd of October is not to be missed by any one who can appreciate a rock show, or the theme of two lovers with a doomed relationship. Cruel by Tibor Molnar is an original opera that challenges classical musical genre characterization. It is a mixture of a rock symphonic poem with a pop/rock/sung through musical. The music encapsulates the wide range of emotions in the play, from agony to ecstasy in a futile challenge to equilibrate morality with the unstoppable craving for love.

CRUEL is a must see for anyone with a taste for dark themes and thrilling music

The story deals with the emotional exploration of an unattainable love relationship between a married man and a libertine girl dying of cancer. What impresses most is the acuteness, the depth and the versatile perspective revealed in this musical exploration. The point of the dramatical musical poem is that love is something that chooses us as opposed to the other way round, and that gaining your heart’s desire is as much a tragedy as losing it, as relationships doom us all.

The UK premiere of CRUEL is definitely suitable for those who are sick of seeing the same thing and hearing the same old story. The show will not only deliver in terms of its musical expertise in the form of four talented vocalists, but it will also leave the audience with some food for thought on the complexities of love and relationships.

The creative team:

Created by Tibor Molnar

Directed by Cezar Ghioca

Soloists:

Raluca Stoica – Soprano

Andy Ghost – Baritone

Alexandru Arnautu – Tenor

Sara Hajdu – Alto

Chordis string quartet

Lehel Lorinczi – Organist

A Combo Of All Your Favourite Fusions, Statue Thieves Feed The Sounds For Your Soul

Alternative, Experimental, Indie, Metal, Pop, Punk, Rock

 

The boys over at Statue Thieves have made it apparently clear that their blend of rock psychedelic fusion is no joke, and that they have every intention on standing out with their eclectic sound.

Comprised up of 4 musicians Craig Ingham, Ivan Muela, Gennaro Oliviero and Michal Domin, each with a key component to the weird yet strangely familiar style Statue Thieves preserve.

The reason i say familiar as they clearly draw inspiration from the 60’s and 70’s, with bright guitar effects reminiscent to the likes of Jimi Hendrix.

If this sounds like your kind of thing, be sure to check them out:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/thestatuethieves

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/5wHg2AqewiKhluNdAFamMV

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thestatuethieves/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/statuethieves

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thestatuethieves/

Website: http://www.thestatuethieves.com/

 

Ben Ridley, Turning His Classical World Upside Down, With New Pop Album ‘Sing’

Alternative, Experimental, Folk, Funk, Indie, Pop

 

Being able to switch music genres, midway through your career is something that some musicians crave, to have satisfaction in your work in one field, to them do a full U-turn and create something complete new is one hell of a life goal, and Ben Ridley has made it clear that his new found pop career is here to stay!

Ben Ridley’s previous music path was quite different, consisting a classical piano compositions, however, with the recent release of tracks such as ‘Sing’ and ‘Dancing Mood’. These tracks take the traditional elements of a classic pop song, but with added flare that only Ben could bring to the table.

With the added addition of more pop treats guaranteed further down the line, Ben Ridley is definitely one to keep your eye on.

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmbBMAky4e8

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Ben-Ridley-194235297798511/

Instagram: BenRidleyMusic

Twitter:  BenRidleyMusic

Taking A Stand, Saint Mars Release New Project That Highlights The Effects Of Bullying

Alternative, Experimental, Folk, Indie, Pop, Rock

 

Breaking barriers between Europe and the USA, Saint Mars have incorporated the voice of 13 year old Tryzdin Grubbs, a talented young singer who found fame in a internet viral video, in which he covers Adele’s ‘Hello’, making him an instant hit!

This experimental, pop-rock project is a concept album that revolves around the harsh effects of bullying, especially in a younger generation. To convey this, the band gained the youthful, yet defined voice of 13 year old Tryzdin Grubbs.

The sweet and soft voice brings the track to life, and gives it a new and experimental twist. With a brand new single out on April 28th, be sure to check them out:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/saint_mars

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJDziNXZFtNpmd_BIZ1z_EA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SAINT.MARS.OFFICIAL/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcDarcange?edit=true

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saint.mars/

Website: https://www.saintmars.net

Review: Hunter’s ‘So Gay’ Track Gets The Bigger Man Remix Treatment

Alternative, dubstep, Experimental, Hip Hop, Pop

 

Hunter, the man responsible for the recent release ‘So Gay’, a electro-blues fusion track which talks about social issues, and tells the story of a man declaring his sexuality in a bold and confident way.

With the song gaining traction within the LGBTQ community, as well as social media groups and larger scale radios, Hunter decided to take his tune to the next level, introducing the ‘Bigger man’ remix, mixed by Krupatron.

The track itself is a completely new take on the original with mainly techno and house based instrumentation, with his vocals having the occasional skip or double hit.

 

This is a great tune, and with a slightly techno/pop-bloodhound gang feel and Hunters husky blues vocals, it proves that the coupling of these two elements really do work and they stand out as powerful and brilliantly entertaining.

So be sure to check him out:

Website: http://www.hunterthevoice.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Hunter-Hunter-126407388048990/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HunterTheVoice

Instagram: hunter.the.voice

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3eJ-jIzxaZ2ahFwDiva9dA?view_as=subscriber

Roman Zayats Is Making The Rounds With Surprise New Track ‘Cold’

dubstep, Experimental, Hip Hop, Pop

 

Roman Zayats, a Russian DJ who has been slaving away since he was young, writing, composing and recording his own material, however, now its time for Roman to take a step back, making way for his mystery guest vocalists.

His brand new single ‘Cold’ comes with the information that Roman’s latest venture will include different vocalists, and 1 very special guest vocalist. The track cold is a EDM and House/Techno treat, and a perfect pre-release to his upcoming project.

So if you are as excited as we are, be sure to check him out:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/romanzayats_official

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_bvM6qe5zrBy3EosF4yowg

Facebook: facebook.com/roman.zayats.80

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RomanZajats

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/roman_zayats_80/

Website: https://romanzayats.com/

Luuk Lagrange Manages To Stay Out Of The Limelight, All While Releasing Brand New Track ‘Invisible’

Alternative, dubstep, Experimental, Hip Hop, Pop

 

 

Reading the title of the song, you may think that there is a strange link between the title and the artist, and you would be right, but what you may not know, is that it literal, Luuk is invisible!

Well, not 100% invisible, however he tries to not give his identity away frivolously, with fans left with just a name to recognize him by.  Luuk’s most recent release ‘Invisible’ is a homage to so many dance and EDM influences past and present, but with elements of house/techno and melodies that are dark and haunting, Luuk manages to spearhead a brand new style, giving his music an original feel.

With more fantastically arranged tunes yet to come, be sure to check him out:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-746655712/invisible    

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/luuklagrange    

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LuukLagrange

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/luuk.lagrange/   

Website: https://www.luuklagrange.com/