An Interview With bryden

Q: Welcome! Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

A: Hi! I’m bryden, I’m 23 and I grew up in North-West London.

Q: Can you tell us about the inspiration behind your new EP?

A: I fell in love whilst studying occult rituals and satanic poetry for my dissertation, so that was the genesis of the emotions and imagery which inspired the EP. The intensity of my feelings felt inextricably linked to the study of rituals, masks, and satanic melodies which I was reading about and I wanted to re-create the genuine magic which Alastair Crowley, WB Yeats, and Madame Blavatsky created in their meetings to reflect the unprecedented rushes of love and beauty and fear which I felt at the same time. Basically, I was running off no sleep, coffee, and hangovers, whilst burying my nose in haunted books in an old library and I fell in love at the same time.

Q: How does ” The Rites ” compare to your previous releases in terms of sound and themes?

A: My first release was more of a straight-up love song and more alt-R&B. I think you can see a thorough line from ‘Tempted’ in ‘The Rites’ in the vocal textures I adopt and the lyrical style. This release is just bolder, and rockier, and has more strength to its melodic and lyric journey.

Q: What was the most challenging aspect of creating this EP, and how did you overcome it?

A: For this EP I began with around 5 short poems that centered around a central narrative of falling in love / undergoing a seance. I then condensed and edited down a lot of that on my own, on my little 3/4 acoustic guitar, really prioritizing melody and feeling rather than the story. I then brought an embryonic form of the songs on the EP to Oscar and we played around with structures and fine-tuned the songs over a few weeks in Urchin Studios, Hackney Wick. I think it was a struggle moving between forms like that. Usually, I keep poetry and songs quite separate from conception to the final product. So it was interesting to have much more of the song made in terms of the melodies and lyrics being before approaching the sonic tapestry and defining the instrumental behind it. But for these songs, I really think it worked out and we ended up with something cohesive and intricately plotted at a granular level.

Q: How do you hope listeners will feel when they hear “The Rites” for the first time?

A: I’m hoping they’ll fall victim to the ceremony and really connect to the story and the lyrics. But mostly I’m hoping they just find the 3 songs to bop, that they want to sing and jump about listening to!

Q: Are there any themes or messages that you hope ” The Rites ” will convey to your audience?

A: I suppose don’t read old demonic tomes at night in the library or you might lose your marbles is the lesson of the day. I think the emotional undercurrent of the Ep is to give in to Love and deep emotion. Maybe it functions as a reminder that sometimes you have to surrender yourself to the non-logical, animal part of the mind
Q: How do you balance the need to be creative and innovative with the desire to connect with your audience?

A: I think generally for my next project I want my songwriting to evolve to be a bit simpler, truer, and less needlessly ornamental. But honestly, I couldn’t imagine these songs any other way at this point, I think for the concept, the source material, and what I wanted to achieve I really couldn’t change a thing. I was driven by a desire to stand out and pursue what felt truest to my artistic impulse initially, but my producer Oscar really helped with crafting songs that always maintain the quality of a) listenability and b) hookiness. I really like the structure of the songs because they’re balancing story-telling and sonic risks with a desire at their core to just be unfussy, enjoyable songs that entertain.
Q: Can we expect more new music from you in the near future? If so, what can you tell us about your upcoming projects?

A: I’ve got about 10 really good demos with various producers at the moment and I’m currently planning which ones to develop next. I’m probably going to focus on singles for a while now, but I’ve got a few ideas for bigger and better concept projects in the near to mid future!

Follow bryden on:

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