Aza Brown - For Real?
United Kingdom, Chesterfield
Aza Brown is back with his first release of the year 'For Real?'. This is an uptempo production containing an anti-establishment rant within its words surrounding the futility of modern living ("Hamster on a wheel"/"cog in the machine") and escaping the rat race. We were hooked at the opening lyrics "what if I told you that there's method to my madness". There's a slight hint of jaz behind the production similar to the artistry of 'Mika'. To hear the track, click the link below and look out for his upcoming music video!
Having made it into our Top 10 Indie Rock at the start of last month, we wanted to find out more in an interview!
Your main sound is pop. How did these influences come into play in your sound?
My main sound is Power Pop - I’ve been massively influenced by the music of Jellyfish in the early 90’s, along with Brendon Benson and Jason Faulkner. I love the pop sensibilities and vocal harmonies, and my old band from the 90’s - Dazy Age - used to perform these completely live in 3-4 parts. I’ve carried on the tradition with my own stuff.
What is the main goal for 'For Real?' What would be the ultimate achievement?
The main goal for “For Real?” Would be to get people to stop briefly and take a look at their lives, get out of the rat race and be a better human being. We are worth so much more than we imagine, if we just thought about what lies on the other side of fear
What are your ultimate career goals overall?
As an artist I’d love nothing more than to be able to gig regularly and support myself through my music. I also run a local Derbyshire-based Podcast, and I’m trying to establish a bit more of a scene here - it was buzzing in the 90’s, but there aren’t too many places for original bands again. Through all the interviews I’m conducting I’d like to encourage confidence in new bands that are coming through, and provide a platform for them to express themselves, so the area can thrive again
Your lyrics are very anti-establishment, what are you trying to achieve through your music?
“For Real?” Is indeed very anti-establishment - I wouldn’t define my music as this, although a possible future single “Flatten The Curve” casts a very cynical eye at the last 24 months, and the decimation of people’s lives - I wrote to my MP - speaking up for the Music, Entertainment and Hospitality industries, and although my letter was brought up in the House of Commons and passed to the Minister, ultimately nothing happened. I’m really not liking the trajectory the World is on at the moment, so if there’s anything I’d like to achieve, it’d be to get people to turn off their TV’s and question everything they’re being fed.
When did you first realise that you had the potential to be an artist? Is there a memory that has stuck in your mind as the turning point for you?
I think I only really had the belief to go it on my own in the last 4-5 years - I started a process called “The Morning Pages” where I wrote 3 Pages - “stream of consciousness” every morning. It wasn’t necessarily about music, but it had the effect of organising my thoughts and ideas, and I became much more productive - it also instilled a belief and confidence in myself that I’d never had before - I’d heartily recommend it for anyone with Writer’s Block.
What are the main influences in your songwriting process?
“The Morning Pages” by Julia Cameron is by far the biggest influence - ideas come and flow much better, and it’s particular to you. I usually write on GarageBand with a little iRig keyboard - it’s so easy to set up really quickly and get not just basic ideas down, but they can then be ported into Logic. It’s also really portable - I wrote most of this album in Australia on the fly, and then sent the files to producer Danny Burton, who made a cracking job of the production.
How would you define your sound?
The sound I’ve got on this album is very 90’s influenced, and also quintessentially British - I loved The Verve and many have told me it’s got the ethereal sheen of them “Urban Hymns” era. There’s also a bit of the Divine Comedy and Jellyfish in there too. There’re also a lot of vocal harmonies, and the album is awash with strings. I think I might go back to a rockier sound after this album though - I seem to have had the best responses to “For Real?”, but I’ve also got some ideas in the EDM arena, and my debut single “Pure Water” spawned a remix album in it’s own right, with 10 different mixes from top dance music producers.
What are your future plans? What can we look forward to for the rest of 2022?
There’s my next single “Afterthought” out on Friday 13th May, which has a Latino vibe - imagine James Bond taking on the drugs cartels in Mexico - I even went to Mexico in the Winter to film the video, and a lot of people think this is my best song. I’ll also be releasing the album “Exennial” on my Birthday in July, and performing it out for the first time with a string quartet and choir all booked to well and truly make this a spectacle. Just need to get rehearsing now!
Where can we find the track? Links to socials and distribution handles