SOUND BITES Vol. 1
feat: Colyer, Vegan Burgers, Cactopus, Slurpees
Taking a break from preparations for my upcoming Teal Dreams EP release show, I sat down with local LA singer/songwriter, Colyer, to discuss the show and our music over some delicious vegan kale burgers from Fala Bar on Melrose. Afterwards, we checked out some local street art and investigated the current, nearby Slurpee situation ahead of 7/11. Colyer is one of my favorite LA musicians, so I am honored to have him open up for the Enjune band this coming Thursday in Venice.
COLYER : You excited for the show?
ENJUNE : Yeah totally, but it’s definitely been a challenge trying to coordinate everyone to get together, especially this time of year you know. Tomorrow we’ll be rehearsing for several hours and then we meet before the show.
COLYER : I saw Andrew Heringer is going to be playing bass with you.
ENJUNE : Yeah, bass and synth.
COLYER : Thats awesome, he never gets out of the house.
ENJUNE : Haha, Well he is always working hard on music. He’s going to open up for the show too.
COLYER : Haha, true I love Andrew. That’s gonna be great. I’m excited for it.
ENJUNE : Everyone in the band are all pros. They’ve each toured a bunch.
COLYER : Who else is playing with you?
ENJUNE : Celeste Taucher (aka talker) from FRENSHIP is playing keys, Dan Sadin is playing guitar, Bill Delia from Grizfolk is playing drums. Celeste and Dan are both opening up the night as well.
COLYER : Oh yeah, you have an all-star band.
ENJUNE : They’ve all been rehearsing on their own. Tomorrow we’re gonna come together and hash every thing out. We were thinking of playing to a click, but I think we’re just gonna keep it loose and make it more jammy of a time.
COLYER : I think your drummer is gonna be fine with that.
ENJUNE : Agreed. Bill’s really good.
COLYER : Yeah, I mean he’s gotta be great, I have heard of that band Grizfolk before.
ENJUNE : The Grizfolk guys were some of my first really good music friends in LA. Especially, Adam, their lead singer. He’s become one of my best friends ever. He lived in Venice for about 17 years, and we met after I first moved here a few years back. Before I ever decided to do anything with music, he and I would hang out and play guitar at his house for friends or girls. There were a couple of times where I either played one of my songs or one I liked to cover and he would say “Damn, if you ever want to do something with your music, you probably could man. You just gotta put in the effort.” I really took that to heart because I respected him a lot and eventually I followed through with his suggestions.
COLYER : It’s those moments, when people say things that unintentionally inspire you, through them just being honest, that can really make a difference.
ENJUNE : There was another time, I got a chance to play a song at my friend Keith Harkin’s spot. He’s a very successful Irish singer/songwriter that tours all the time, but lives in Venice. Sometimes he’d have these get togethers and set it up as a casual open mic night at in the garage of him and his wife’s bushiness headquarters. Anyways, one night I played a song that I had written a while back about the passing of my late dad. One of my friend’s, Caitlin, recorded it on her phone and came up to me afterwards and told me how powerful it was. I was shocked by her response and thanked her. I was honestly taken back from it because it was the first song I had written that I felt confident had any merit and was good enough to share with people.
COLYER : That’s gotta be a good feeling of relief almost.
ENJUNE : Yeah, I just recorded it finally with Andrew last week. Even the rough draft of the track sounds pretty good.
We found some cool street art after lunch. This one particularly caught our eye. We unofficially named it Cactopus.
ENJUNE : How would people describe your sound?
COLYER : It’s kinda like throwback 60’s rock mixed with soul motown/soul with some ambiguous synthesizer shit going on. Yeah.. It’s all over the place. I’ve been really inspired by french music, as well as J Dilla, Mad Lib, all their beats, so it’s kinda mixing that in a way with my vocals to make all that work. It’s interesting.
ENJUNE : Some of the songs off of your last EP had a lot of layers of lead guitar parts and it’s always fun to listen to them and mentally pick them all out. On your song “Burn My Lights Out” I wonder how, when you were recording them, which lines you recorded first and which followed. You’ve done that technique for a few of your songs.
COLYER : That’s just kinda part of my process, but I guess in some of them it happens more that others, because I overdub everything. It’s like a trial and error to see what works best. So with “Burn My Lights Out” there’s the main guitar line and the rest are all kinda just accents. I guess it’s a pretty fun game to play.
ENJUNE : It’s definitely cool, it’s kinda like there’s all these guitars shouting, trying to get there voice in there, but it works.
COLYER : Ha. There’s almost too much guitar, but they’re all like these wonky tones joining together.
ENJUNE : So with the new music you’ve been writing, have you been trying to take a different approach to the creative process.
COLYER : In a way, yeah. I’ve been pulling these loops from Splice, kinda like breakbeat loops just for inspiration, and have specifically been inspired by this french composer François De Roubaix. He did the soundtrack to this erotic horror movie from the 60’s called “Daughter’s Of Darkness”. I haven’t even seen it, but the soundtrack is incredible. That was kinda the spark of this new creative chapter. I also love a lot of music from works by Gasper Noe, Tarantino and David Lynch. Right now, I’m at a very vulnerable place artistically, so that’s been giving me a lot of lyrics to write. If I could describe how this album is going to sound in a few words, I would say “french western soul from outer space” haha.
ENJUNE : That’s incredible man. Thanks for sharing all that. I can’t wait to hear the new material on 7/11 Thursday.
RSVP TO TEAL DREAMS EP RELEASE SHOW HERE: found.ee/7-11
LISTEN TO COLYER BELOW:
All photos by Matt Guzman.