Artist name: Spirals
Release name: Self-titled. Not sure if counts as an EP or a mini-album or an album or a mixtape. It’s 9 tracks and around 37 minutes, anyway.
Release date: Download available now at Bandcamp: http://spiralsssss.bandcamp.com Physical CD available 10th December
1. Where and when did you first discover your interest in music?
When I was young I used to listen to my Mum’s records, things like Ike and Tina Turner, Enya, Sonny & Cher, The Beatles, and also classical things like Beethoven, Puccini, Mozart, John Williams. Later when I was a teenager I got into rap and rock music and started playing keyboard. I was listening to stuff like Radiohead, Bloc Party, Eminem, The Beastie Boys, Jay-Z, Marilyn Manson, Tool, Taking Back Sunday, Pink Floyd. Also jazz stuff like John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Sun Ra and Keith Jarrett. Around then I got a 4-track and started messing around recording myself, mostly improvisational piano stuff, but eventually songs.
2. What are your main ambitions in the industry?
To be able to make a living! Haha. I mean, I’d like to be the singer in a popular band that plays at festivals and tours widely and sells lots of albums, but making a living is a reasonable first step. I’m exploring lots of different avenues with that — first of all, my own music, but also I am starting to write songs for other artists, singing hooks on other artists’ rap and dubstep tracks, making hip hop beats, designing clothes and graphics. I’m also looking at getting into music publishing libraries for TV and movies. I’ve been doing this full time since October, and in that time I recorded my current release. I will probably have to return to a day job and doing music part-time sometime early next year if my musical career doesn’t take off by then…
3. When did you start writing your own songs/music?
Around when I was 18/19 I started writing songs that I would record with my 4-track, then with Garageband, and later Logic. Iit was a very steep learning curve.
4. What would you say is your music career highlight to date?
When I was 19 Rob da Bank played a song I created called Ukulele in a group I played with called Anywhere on his BBC Radio 1 show! He said it was one of the worst-presented demos he’d ever been sent. It was in a home-made CD case made of white paper with the song title and contact info scrawled in pink marker pen on the front.
5. What are your influences?
Pink Floyd, Syd Barrett, Radiohead, 30 Seconds to Mars, Kanye West, Bastille, Alt-J, Yeasayer, Tool, Jimi Hendrix, The Weeknd, Frank Ocean, Drake.
6. What’s the most important thing you’d want to tell people about your current release?
Listen to the whole thing.
7. Who else can you recommend from your genre or local area for people to listen to?
I’m gonna name two people I’ve collaborated with lately, neither of whom are from my local area. The first is an artist from the U.S. called Jarrell Auzel who is both a singer and rapper. We recorded a remix of the Drake song 6God together — he rapped and I sang: https://soundcloud.com/spiralsssss/6god-this-is-tetris-feat-jarrell-auzel
Lyrically, he has some clever punchlines, but artistically he has a very distinct vision of where he wants to go, and he has a certain charisma that I think will take him a long way in the industry. I think he has the potential to be the next Drake or Kanye West.
The second one is an artist I found through Soundcloud called ProgRockDan1 who I’ve done two songs with recently: https://soundcloud.com/progrockdan1/skyline-featuring-spiralsssss & https://soundcloud.com/progrockdan1/higher-featuring-spiralsssss
I wish there were more people like him in the music world. He is a music-loving multi-instrumentalist who records really interesting and varied collaborations with creative people from all over the world. Scrolling through his Soundcloud page is a real trip. Being a good online collaborator is a real skill, and this guy has mastered it.
8. Any gigs?
I have a BBC Introducing live session on the 4th of January at the Hope Pole in Bromyard, Herefordshire! This will be my first gig since 2010, as I stopped playing live for 4 years in 2011 due to a long-term illness I experienced, so I’m very excited and also a little scared. I’m currently trying to put together a backing band to play it with me.
9. Where can we follow you online?
Dizzyjam (my clothing designs): http://spirals.dizzyjam.com