Posts Tagged ‘Will Taylor’

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Hovvdy is a slow-moving, minimal indie band co-fronted by Charlie Martin and Will Taylor. The duo writes rhythmic, spacious tunes with hazy keyboard tones and sparse, patterned guitar movement. Their strength as a band lies in the ability to turn toward pop melodies; Hovvdy know the precise time to make that shift and sustain it just long enough to remain fresh.

Hometown
Austin, TX

Band Members
Charlie Martin – Keys, Guitar, and Vocals
Will Taylor – Guitar and Vocals
Grady Bell – Bass
Ray Micarelli – Drums

Hovvdy perform on Audiotree Live, September 29, 2017.

Session Tracklist
1. Better
2. Problem
3. Meg
4. Can’t Wait
5. Friend
6. In My Head
7. Thru
8. Pretend

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Hovvdy have announced their sophomore effort, Cranberry for release 9th February via the fine folks at Double Double Whammy Records. Their tunes are chilled out pop tunes. They bounce along, never getting overly excited but leaving you humming along.

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Based in Austin, Texas, Hovvdy (pronounced “howdy”) is the writing and recording project of Charlie Martin and Will Taylor. The duo, both primarily drummers, first met in the fall of 2014 and quickly bonded over a love for quiet music. Within a few weeks, they had combined songs and began recording their first EP in bedrooms and family homes across Texas.

Flyte are Will Taylor (vocals, lead guitar), Nick Hill (bass, vocals), Sam Berridge (keyboards, guitars, vocals) and Jon Supran (drums, vocals).
The band spent the first months of 2017 in Australia putting the finishing touches to their debut album with ‘Courtney Barnett’ producer Burke Reid, a collaboration that delves deep into new sonic territory to create a modernist but timeless sound that revels in coming-of-age nostalgia, cinematic synth melodies and prolific storytelling themes of life, love and death.
One of the great treasures of 2017 came in the form of British act Flyte’s debut album The Loved Ones and I don’t know that anyone else seemed to notice. It’s a god damn shame, as it’s a wonderful album that is stripped down to just the core elements of pure songwriting bliss that it’s almost way too good for present-day consumption. I’ve been following the band throughout the years releasing singles, seeing them evolve from releasing 80’s sounding slices of Brit-pop to this more refined 60s sound that feels timeless and essential. The band went into the recording of the album not set on making a big single or moment, but rather making an album that flowed seamlessly with each track as important as the last. It’s fitting on this list that they end the album in old-school fashion, with a cover of Alvvays’ “Archie, Marry Me.”
Last year, vocalist Will Taylor and keys player Sam Berridge got drunk and uploaded a cover of Joni Mitchell’s ‘River’ to their Facebook page. The slap-dash DIY charm and heart-wrenching voices started a Flyte-movement. Racking up over 1M streams, fans wanted more sessions, and Flyte began carefully curating covers in London landmarks with towering acoustics, earning a reputation for their trademark four-part harmonies, as well as their live sound. Pulling on all their resources, the band also started a successful sell-out club night Chasing Heaven, where friends were invited to play at intimate London venues.

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Accomplished songwriters Will, Sam, Nick, and Jon have released a flurry of alternative-indie anthems including ‘We Are The Rain’, ‘Closer Together,’ and ‘Light Me Up’ over the past few years and have amassed over 1.5M Spotify streams. Evolving together as a band and great friends.

Based in Austin, Texas, Hovvdy (pronounced “howdy”) is the writing and recording project of Charlie Martin and Will Taylor. The duo, both primarily drummers, first met in the fall of 2014 and quickly bonded over a love for quiet music. Within a few weeks, they had combined songs and began recording their first EP in bedrooms and family homes across Texas.

By 2016 the two had committed to each others growth in songwriting and recording, resulting in their debut album “Taster”, originally released on Sports Day Records and reissued in 2017 by Double Double Whammy. Hovvdy has found a unique identity in rhythmic, down-tempo pop songs that are hopeful, yet melancholy; relatable, yet distinguishable.

Hovvdy’s sophomore album, “Cranberry”, expands on a familiar texture, building off Taster’s minimal complexity and covering new ground. Hovvdy – “Petal” Off their new album, “Cranberry” Out February 9th, 2018 on Double Double Whammy Records.

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 Flyte’s debut album shimmers with a very English melancholy. There is ancient, churchlike resonance to the choral harmonies of “Annie & Alistair”, a tale of the twelve-step programme at Alcoholics Anonymous. There is something of Orange Juice’s sun-dappled innocence to “Victoria Falls”, and shades of Simon & Garfunkel in the beautiful acoustic ballad Orphans of the Storm, but also the spirit of the English outsider, romantic and hopeful and never entirely satisfied, running throughout the album. You can hear it in “Sliding Doors”, a Talk Talk-inspired tale of a suicide, and in “Cathy Come Home”, in which the parents of a girl whose boyfriend has been beating her up beg her to return to the family fold. Not so much drawing on his own life as seeking experiences to then reflect upon, Will’s style of writing has as much in common with George Orwell and Evelyn Waugh as it does with Nick Drake, Ray Davies, or any number of songwriters who have tapped into the English malaise for inspiration.

“Being an English songwriter is tainted ground,” says Will, “but all the poetry I’ve mustered is about the sadness and mournfulness that penetrates English life. Cathy Come Home, for example, is about empty nest syndrome, and the pain of seeing a child moving into adulthood. Orphans of the Storm gets its name from a chapter in Brideshead Revisited. Perhaps it is because I come from Winchester, which I have a massive chip on my shoulder about because it is so incredibly safe and middle class and my dad taught at the college for clever people, while I went to the local comp, but I can’t get away from that kind of sensibility.”

Flyte’s story begins at that comprehensive in Winchester when Will, aged thirteen, formed a band called the Ashbys with drummer Jon Supran. (“We had a tiny bit of hype. Lily Allen said she liked one of our songs.”) Needless to say, there was still much growing up to do, and after leaving school, after spending six months in San Francisco and a year in Paris with his then-girlfriend, Will reconnected with Jon and bassist Nick Hill, another school friend. Then in 2013 Will spotted Sam Berridge, the band’s classically trained keyboardist and guitarist, busking at Tottenham Court Road station. Ten years of waiting for something to happen, forming a band with three other musicians gifted with great singing voices, and a serious case of heartbreak — Will’s girlfriend ended things not long after Flyte came together , This gave the band all the ingredients they needed to hit the ground running.

“My soon to be ex-girlfriend made a video on an iPhone of us playing Faithless,” says Will. “It snowballed from there.”

Once the band had a deal in place with Island Records, after releasing their first single on Transgressive, and the time to devote themselves to making a great debut, Flyte released a flurry of alternative-indie anthems including ‘We Are The Rain’, ‘Closer Together,’ and ‘Light Me Up’, amassing millions of streams and a dedicated live following – having started their own sell-out Chasing Heaven club night, where friends are invited to play at intimate London venues, with many artists passing through such as Beatenberg, Toothless, and Grace Lightman. But it was one Christmas night that spelled a Flyte-movement – when Will and Sam uploaded a cover of Joni Mitchell’s ‘River’ to their Facebook page. The heart-wrenching interpretation racked up over 1M streams, with fans wanting more sessions. The band began carefully curating covers in London landmarks with towering acoustics, including Heaven Talking Heads, and Archie Marry Me by Alvvays, which features on the record.

Earning a reputation for their trademark vocal arrangements, the goal was to come up with a sound that acknowledged the music they loved, from Nick Drake to Mac DeMarco to Vangelis’s soundtrack to Blade Runner, without being derivative or overly reverential. Sam says Flyte found their voice by “forcing restriction on the music, and by making the most of having four singers in the group. When we realised it was a unique thing to have four people who could sing in harmony we emphasised that. We knew it wasn’t going to sound like anything else.”

“We would be in the studio and say to each other: ‘wouldn’t it be great to have some strings here?’, or, ‘Let’s get a wicked synth line on this track,’” adds Will. “And we always conclude, ‘No, let’s do it with the voices because it will always work that way. And it’s our way.’”

No album worth its place in the pantheon is made without the spilling of much blood, sweat and tears. Flyte don’t make life easy for themselves. They never use Pro Tools, instead practising intensely, honing and crafting each song until they know they can do a great live take of it in the studio. Harmonies are captured by having three voices sing into one microphone rather than using the more common modern technique of layering with overdubs.

“None of the albums that inspire us as musicians are heavily edited, polished or overproduced,” says Sam, “so we didn’t want ours to be either.”

Each member of the band contributed to the music, to which Will then added the words, but that doesn’t mean it was plain sailing. “Our process of making music is democratic but frustrating,” Will explains. “Dreams get crushed on a daily basis because everyone has a say, so you have to let go of something you might be particularly proud of. There is a lot of arguing, crying and hating each other and I want to die most of the time, but the end result makes it worthwhile.”

 Please listen to Flyte’s life-affirming album of tightly constructed songs,

For the first single off of London-based band Flyte’s debut LP (out August 25th via Island Records), the alternative four-piece stays close to their roots. “Cathy Come Home” sets its eyes on a former schoolmate of the bandmates whose experience rings true no matter what side of the Atlantic you’re on.

Cathy is about parents struggling to let their children out into the world,” explains lead singer Will Taylor, who forms Flyte with Nick Hill, Jon Supran, and Sam Berridge. Written from the perspective of Cathy’s parents, the song addresses the young woman in question and begins contemplatively: “Maybe you’re right / We’re holding on too tight.” But its tone soon shifts, beckoning her to return for dinner. The protective call is both banal and far-reaching, an attempt to protect that’s situated somewhere between offering a shield and building an impenetrable bubble. “We were watching a lot of Ken Loach while we were writing it,” says Taylor, “hence the slightly bleak narrative and of course, the title.” In what the band describes as a “rare” turn of events, the song’s lyrics and music arrived together. Taylor also says that it’s reflective of what to expect on the rest of the album.

“The whole album is more or less a live performance, so within those limitations we’re trying to surprise the listener as much as possible,” explains Taylor, who promises “no shortage of twists and turns” within the 35-minute framework of the album (which they hope listeners will experience from start to finish). Their four voices will continue to feature prominently, and ultimately, are core to their approach. “The vocals are where we’ve been most creative,” continues Taylor, “whenever we need to make a moment in a song work better, we use our voices.”

FLYTE’S debut album (Island Records) is out August 25th, 2017.

Launched in April of this year Hovvdy’s ‘Taster’ album with the premiere of its stand-out track, “Problem”, way back in early 2016, little did we know then that this small, bruised, lo-fi gem would go on to rack-up over 75,000 plays on Soundcloud alone.

The album that followed was just as affecting; the languid approach to it all, the scratchy, dim-lit tone of the voice and the music, creeping out of the speakers with a dulled charm that takes a few listens to truly appreciate. A duo from Austin, Texas, Hovvdy’s skill lies in the ability to sneak utterly captivating hooks in to songs that seem too weather and unadorned to do so. Like the sudden jolt of a treasured memory on the most listless of days, ‘Taster’ is a truly beautiful collection of songs dressed up as something dull and indifferent. Seek and you will find alittle gem of an album that you will keep coming back to play .

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The best crunchy lofi drum and synth sounds, bedroom acoustics and honest vocal deliveries. This really follows up my LVL UP and Mitski obsessions well. It’s got melodies and vibes that feel like a nice morning/afternoon/evening on the couch. Hovvdy is Charlie Martin and Will Taylor.
‘Taster’ recorded and mixed by Hovvdy,
bass on 2, 8, and 10 by Sam Jacobson,

“Taster” is the Beautiful, atmospheric lo-fi and mostly quiet, thoughful songs, with some fuzzy, jangly parts inbetween. If you like the music of Red House Painters, the quieter songs of Sebadoh and Ewan Dando, you will like this from the band Hovvdy. Great songs all through the album .While Taster already sits as one my favourite albums released this year, Hovvdy’s gloomy, downtempo masterpiece takes on even greater weight as the autumn finally comes ourway and these shrinking, days take its place. The mood throughout this record is decidedly downbeat too; you can almost smell the stark sense of isolation that permeates through every single track.

A prominent record in any season; an absolute must-have addition to your autumn listening. this album wraps you up like a blanket and makes you feel all kinds of love. Hovvdy is Charlie Martin and Will Taylor.
‘Taster’ recorded and mixed by Hovvdy,

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While such a weird band name, Hovvdy, might initially lend itself to some form of detachment – alienation, but just one listen to the band’s new single stirs feelings quite the opposite. Withdrawn and sullen though it is, ‘Problem‘, which is the lead track from their forthcoming full-length release, feels remarkably familiar and ingrained, like a submerged sadness that can’t be placed, like that tug of wanting, for something, anything, else.

Released via a collaboration between Merdurhaus Records and Sports Day Records, the duo’s new album will be called “Taster”and will be released on April 15th, and follows their previous two EPs which are well worth exploring over on their Bandcamp page.

Speaking of the new record, Will Taylor said: “”Hovvdy came on unexpectedly. Charlie and I only began collaborating soon after we were introduced to each other at the end of 2014. Over the past six months we’ve been all over Texas borrowing/renting equipment and recording Taster in friends and family’s houses. Despite not playing with each other for very long, we’re really proud of this album and how direct it sounds.”

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As already alluded to, the “Taster” LP is preceded by new track called ‘Problem‘ and it’s a beautifully compelling starting-point; a sunken anthem for a grey day that perfectly sets the mood for what follows on this wonderful album. The guitars sway languidly like trees caught in the bracing breeze, while that most lacklustre of vocals portrays a removed sense of sadness, solemnity…a quiet ache for things that you can already feel slipping away while you sit by and watch it happen. In spite of, or perhaps because of, this there’s a real beauty to the way ‘Problem sounds, one that paints pictures of faded childhood memories, of towns and people left behind.

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Hovvdy is Charlie Martin and Will Taylor.
“Problem” recorded and mixed by Hovvdy,