Regarding their upcoming album “Vox Humana”, Adam Warne, Sam Higgins and Joey Frevola from KYROS talk to JustIn Case Prog Radio about their music and how they get things done in today’s rapidly changing music industry. Did I mention that there’s Joey in there? What are you waiting for? Read on!
Hello! On behalf of JustInCaseProg Radio I send you our regards from Greece. How are you today?
Adam: Feelin' fine! How are you?
Sam: I’m not bad thanks.
Joey: I am doing incredibly, wonderfully, stupendously, splendidly, butt-smackingly, pretty good. How are you?
I’m great thanks! A few weeks back in time, you released “Cloudburst”as single from your upcoming album. How did the audience reacted to it? What was your reaction to the audience’s reaction?
Α: We've had a great reaction to what is most definitely our first single. It seems to have hit people from all sorts of backgrounds. The single has landed us interviews, FM radio play across the country and even a live FM radio interview whilst the 'Feature Length' extended mix of 'Cloudburst' has been a real hit within the Prog community. So far, all going to plan.
Regarding your upcoming release, “Vox Humana”that will be released the 5th of November, how do you feel about it? Could you tell us something about the album?
S: It is more or less a big mush of sounds we like, that somehow ended up as a coherent album.
J: It’s my first album with the band, and I think it’s pretty good. The five of us exhibited remarkable creative chemistry during the whole of the creation of the record, and as a result, the end product feels very natural and organic to me. I’m a fan.
I heard that it is a concept album. Could you tell us a few things about the story, if it’s possible?
J: I can give a basic premise. Essentially, it’s about a man who leaves society to create and raise the perfect human being. I think one of the most fun aspects of a concept album is sitting with the record and trying to work out the story on your own, so I’ll leave it there. Good luck!
As far as I can see, you will be releasing “Vox Humana” independently. What lead you to such a decision? Would you recommend this?
A:We believe that there is no reason to go with a record label anymore if you are in a position of self-sustainance and have a dedicated and loyal fanbase that follows you each step of the way. By approaching things differently, we've been able to micro-manage every fine detail ranging from the writing, production and engineer of the album all the way to how we utilise social media and coordinate promotional campaigns and how we manage the band as a business. We've been able to somewhat compartmentalise the music side and the business side. I believe this to be of great value in a music business that is rapidly changing. Bands need to be social media conscious, business conscious, financially conscious as well as be great musicians and songwriters to survive - this is most definitely how we would like to approach this industry.
S: I’d say he decision to go independent simply came down to a simple and fundamental clash of purpose. When you get right down to it, a record label will always be a business first, and a platform for artistic creation second. Whist there will obviously be exceptions, record labels exist to make money. This means that the general business approach is “How can we make a product that will sell?” the music is tailored to please the audience. As a band, it is the other way around, we are about artistic creation first, business second. The business approach is flipped and becomes “How do we sell this product we made?” Whilst the difference might appear small, the two are irreconcilable if either side is unwilling to compromise; in this situation, we were unwilling to compromise.
Would I recommend it? That would be entirely situation dependent. We can’t ignore, and will always be grateful for the fact that on a label, we got the help, and the push we needed to really get started. We were given: guidance, promotion, funding, contacts, all invaluable things for kick-starting a career. The price however was one of control, whilst we had some control over recording budgets, we had no control over how we were promoted, how we were presented to the media and those other aspects which, when added to the music, make the whole package that is “A Band.” To cut it all short, if you just want to make music, and don’t want to worry about all the other nonsense that goes on in the industry, then a record label will be perfect for you. If however, you have a vision that extends beyond the confines of recorded sound, then you would likely be better served by staying independent.
What changed from the “Synaesthesia” era?
J: Mostly the name.
What is your life philosophy?
A: Don't stop, otherwise you'll begin to think too hard about what you could be doing.
S: 1) Ask questions
2) Strike a balance
3) If a stupid idea works, it isn’t a stupid idea
4) Try to do good.
J: That is an excellent question, and I’m not happy you asked it because I was just beginning suppress all that helpless, existential anguish and now it’s all back on my mind. Thank you.”
Having achieved so much, while being this young, is there any advice you could give to other musicians/bands?
S: Learn how to manage money, keep up with the news, learn all there is to know about this total mess of an industry and when it comes to the music itself: trust your instincts.
It was a great pleasure to grab some of those guys’ precious time and have them write down this interview, for which I’m really thankful.
*SPOILER ALERT*: “Vox Humana” is an incredibly amazing album that you definitely want to check out!