- Electro Industrial Metal Rock
In this episode we chat with James Barnes of Noveaux; based in Sydney. Firstly, you can download a free copy of the track: "Light the Fire". It is featured on the "S.I.N.G.E.D. 2" compilation album. There are links to more Noveaux music further below.
Interview by DJ Robot Citizen:
If you found yourself on a prime-time global media spot and were asked to describe NOVEAUX in around 50 words, what would you say?
James of Noveaux: Noveaux is a Metal Industrial Cross-over blending elements of both styles together to create an interesting hybrid of Organic and Synthetic instruments, working in parallel to create a familiar yet unique sound.
Robot: Is there a guiding ethos/style/philosophy/idealogy/subject-matter for NOVEAUX? If so please feel free to share about that.
Noveaux: I find myself commentating on political/social issues in a fairly abstract way, by abstract I mean I don't outright announce what event triggered such content but more try to paint a picture with words. There are songs about myself and mistakes I've made, people's desire to become loved by all, personal stories that I share in verse. Everything is an inspiration if you let it be. The world of Cinema has always played into how I create atmospheres and songs too.
Robot: When did NOVEAUX come in to being and what initially inspired you to embark upon it?
Noveaux: Noveaux 'came into being' Feb 6th 2007 when I wrote my first song under the name "Whiplash." Got a residency at a Nightclub not long after and started spinning tracks of my favourite Industrial artists and occasionally my own originals I had written. Several years of this until 2011 when the Band came into existence and it's been evolving ever since.
Robot: And, if different, what inspires you currently?
Noveaux: What inspires me these days is the people that say I can't.
How many works (like albums/EPs/videos) have you released and where are they available from?
Noveaux: All our material is available on bandcamp at www.noveaux.bandcamp.com We have an EP titled EVOLVE (2013), and two albums titled MUTATE (2014) and AUGMENT (2015) and one single THE RESET (2016) which is a pre-cursor to a new EP being released mid-year. You can hear how the band's sound (and my production skills) progress as you go from album to album.
Which is your most recent release? How does it relate to prior works? If there's anything else you'd like to say about it, please do!
Noveaux: The most recent release is the single, THE RESET, which is a massive step to the side from the album AUGMENT. The band went on Hiatus at the end of October last year and a few members left the band, so I wrote a song with the feeling of wiping the slate clean, to start fresh again. It's very minimalist and calm compared to the Metal intensity of AUGMENT but that ferocity is returning anew in our upcoming EP which is being written as we speak!
I've been thrilled to catch NOVEAUX's awesome live show several times. I gather you've played many gigs around Sydney and nearby cities. For those who have yet to catch you live:
i) how does it relate to or differ from the studio works?;
ii) what are some of the joys & challenges of playing live gigs?;
iii) what are some events that you remember most fondly?
iv) what are some nuggets of advice you'd give to aspiring artists about playing live?
Noveaux: i) The live show comes is that, a show. We dress the part and wear war paint to give the crowd a proper all encompassing live show, it hits you harder than any stereo system can!
ii) Joys: getting a kick out of playing the music live, you can feel the energy happening as you play. Challenges: Getting 6 people onto a stage with all their gear, haha.
iii) Playing Fiendfest in Sydney along side Leather Strip, Clan of Xymox and Covenant was an amazing experience. Also when we opened for Grendel was a sensational show. The one that holds close to mind though is a show we played where we opened, had a full house, and when we were done everyone left until the headliner came on hours later! iv) Donít drink before playing, I did once and it made it's way onto camera, it's not a pleasant thing you want in print! On a more technical point, K.I.S.S., Keep It Simple Stupid, don't make an overly complex rig for your instrument, it's just asking to go wrong on you just before you play! With a simple rig you have less to go wrong and finding problems will be quicker. Also keep your instruments well maintained, they're your bread and butter!
What are your ambitions and plans for NOVEAUX for the upcoming year?
Noveaux: We are currently writing a new EP with a new line up and influences which is sure to take another step forward in the band's style and ability. Looking forward to it being completed and playing plenty of shows off of it!
Do you have other related media projects?
Noveaux: No, I've tried to branch out and play in other bands or start new side projects but I can never pull myself away from Noveaux enough to give anything else the time it would probably deserve. I give Noveaux my all.
What do you think are some key challenges that independent/underground musicians face today; and, if anything, issues that seem specific to being in our region?
Noveaux: Sydney's lock-out laws have killed off too many venues as well as residential developments crushing down on live venues around the inner western suburbs. Being in a niche market of music also presents a challenge to upcoming musicians, finding the right people to market yourself too and grow from there.
What are some potential solutions? Are there any particular positive developments that you're excited about?
Noveaux: We could be here forever writing about what would fix it haha. Keeping is short and sweet would be to acoustically treat all live venues to reduce noise pollution to prevent residential developments (that came after the venue) from shutting them down and for owners of establishments to allow more shows to happen, not just their own personal tastes in music off a jukebox. It is not an inclusive society unfortunately.
Is there anything else you'd like to add eg. what are your websites where people can learn and hear more?
Noveaux: You can find us on Facebook, Bandcamp, Reverbnation, and Twitter. Or just search Noveaux =]
Robot: Best wishes to you for productivity and success in all areas! :-)