Indie pop band Colour Faction’s self-titled debut EP was recently released, shortly after the release of their debut single Marco Polo. Recording Studios caught up with frontman Joshua G. Ackerman to find out more.
Welcome to the Recording Studios Interview Booth, congratulations on your eponymous debut EP
We’ve really enjoyed the combination of fun happy tunes and smart lyrics that you have to really listen to, to get the most out of each song. How did this mixture of sound and lyrics come to be?
We’re fans of songs that juxtapose bright, happy melodies with downbeat, melancholy lyrics. Artists like Madness and Eels are masters at this. So while a track like Marco Polo may seem rather jaunty on the surface, it is in fact about waking up in the middle of the night and realizing your dreams might never come true.
The songs were written a few years prior to being recorded, how did you maintain or rather reconnect with the feelings and emotions associated with the lyrics when it finally came time to record them?
Billy Joel said some songs grow up to be lawyers, and others grow up to be bums. If a song doesn’t work for you after some time has elapsed, it was probably never good to begin with.
Did you find that you changed during this time and how did this affect the recording of the EP?
Not really. But we did write more songs that we can’t wait to share on the next EP!
When it came to writing the lyrics, what did you find to be the most satisfying part of the process?
Lyrics are always difficult for me and I like to take my time with them. Good lyrics can’t save a song with a weak melody, but they can make a good song great.
Considering the fact that I like to tell stories, I spend a lot of time researching. History is full of richly detailed stories that often convey universal truths. For example, I thought the infamous WW1 exotic dancer/spy, Mata Hari, would make for a fascinating subject as I was toying with the notion of how to write a song about unrequited love, that didn’t rely on the same platitudes and clichés we’ve heard a thousand times before.
While each song has an indie sound, they each have a unique feeling to them. How were the songs put together within the band and who has final say on the musical arrangement?
Variety is something we strive for. Josh writes the songs and we arrange them together in the rehearsal process. Luckily we’re all best friends are able to be completely candid with each other, which makes the process of bringing the tracks to life so much more pleasant and rewarding.
You worked with a great team of producers, Jacques du Plessis and Adrian Erasmus at High Seas Studios as well as Emily Lazar who mastered the EP. What did you find the most rewarding aspect of having them work on the album?
It’s been a struggle to find the right collaborators over the years. Jacques and Adrian were instrumental in helping us actualize our sound – intricate boy/girl harmonies and smart, melodic indie pop/rock arrangements. Emily, who has worked with everyone from Vampire Weekend to The Shins, did a terrific job of polishing up the EP and making sure it sounded world-class.
We have to ask – what are the French lyrics in Dancing At A Party On A Saturday Night?
It’s a quote that’s attributed to Joan of Arc. You’ll have to decipher it yourself 😉
This next question is for Angelika – do the boys stink up the tour bus? 🙂
Not at all! They smell like rainbows.
Where is the album available?
Apple music, iTunes, Deezer, Amazon and all other digital platforms.
With us coming up to the end of the year, does the band have any plans to tour the album over the December holidays?
We’re working on it!