Joe Symes and The Loving Kind


JOE Symes and The Loving Kind help relive 80's Bowie, Brit-Pop and the solo workings of Sir Paul McCartney. Simplistic yet all the same intensely powerful, Liverpool's acoustic/rock five-piece bring a relaxation to the mind to create a hypnotic trance, fitting in with their own rock-esque image. So far the musicians have had many an experience in the past years, one of the more notable milestones, headlining Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds after show party, proving their musical prowess within the industry. 


Where Do I belong, the first track I got my ears on, blows all other music choices out of the window, making me favour more towards this experimental talent than any artist out there to date. To approach the music, you have to appreciate the deliberately slow vocals of Symes to understand the complexity of the track. This very ensemble reveals such great triumph full of sheer determination which cleverly intertwines within the music. Compelling all to pick up a guitar, tune up the vocal chords and sing along to their dream-like music.

Another track, A World out Your Window, opens up the truth of the world around you. Giving a stark reminder of reality through the coated façade that the majority of the music to date contains, there is no fairy-tale behind these words, only the truth, this truth becoming the basis for an altogether amazing track.There is no need for sugar-coating the lyrics or music behind this track, an honest, frank opinion is all that helps to complete every second, every breath... increasing the interest with every beat.

All in all, Joe Symes and the Loving Kind create the most realistic and compelling music. Outspoken and completely original, you just don't get this opinionated power inside the music industry any more. We leave it up to the artists under the radar to create this compelling style of music, something which larger artists within the charts today don't seem to touch upon, if at all. We need venom in a stylish, practical way, we have the whole package right here. I had to grab an interview to find out more about them!


First of all, thank you for this interview! I'll start off by asking how would you describe your music?

Joe: I would describe the bands songs/music as very diverse, we don't like to put up barriers. I think if something may fit into the make up of a song then we'll give it a try.

Colin: In one word, I'd say versatile. 

Dave: The music we create is different, and I know that's a cliché but it is. We strive to create a different approach to music as our tastes vary. I think because we don't want to be pigeon-holed we try to create different sound-scapes/feels to achieve this. 

Paul:  I think its a very modern fresh sounding and eclectic take on classic song-writing as Joe says whatever works within a songs overall feel is incorporated. The words and melody always take priority, after all any great song should work on just an acoustic guitar or piano. Its hard to put the variety of songs into a particular genre.

Dave: As Joe said, it's very diverse. It's great to be part of a band with such a varied taste and approach.


Do you all share the same influences in music?

Joe: I think we all do and that we can all talk about different aspects of music and production, also what made us choose to want to play an instrument.

Colin: Most definitely. There may be one or two acts that say, I might have listened to more than Joe, or Joe might have listened more than Paul, for example, but we all share a love of all the greats like The Doors, The Beatles and The Kinks, to name but a few. 

Dave: Well I think we share a common taste of classic bands such as The Beatles, The Doors etc,. as well as a lot of other bands. But we also then draw from other tastes in music as I like my Jazz and use this to give a different sound, as will the rest of the band.  

Paul: All being from Liverpool and around the same age certainly helps, bear in mind also in the melting pot are certain films, soundtracks, t.v. series, imagery etc., they all play a part in the overall output of the band.

Dave: We all share a pretty eclectic taste in music, but we know the important aspects that let the songs really shine.


How did you all come together as a band?

 Joe: I was playing as a solo artist last year, then Colin (who I've known for a number of years) asked if i needed any percussion playing in the gigs so I thought it would be great to get him on board, Dave our keyboard player came along through a friend of ours and i asked him to join after the first rehearsal, Paul our guitarist came along through a friend of Dave's and fitted perfectly in his style, contribution and Dave our new Bass player replied to an advertisement we put out. He has not long been with us long, but seems to have got things done pretty quickly.

Colin: Like Joe has said, we've been friends for quite a few years. When I left my previous band I simply asked Joe if he required any drums putting down in the studio, and some percussion live (he was strictly acoustic at the time), and after a few months of things going well, we decided to "expand the organisation."  We haven't looked back since. 

Dave: Well Joe was looking to expand the band, and my friend knew Joe was initially looking for a keyboard player. Contact was made and, well, here we are! Joe explains it best!
 
Paul: That reminds me, I owe my mate a pint for the introduction.

Dave: I was looking for a new project, posted an ad online and here we are!


At what age did you become interested music, did your parents play a big role in that?

Joe: At a very early age, I started playing drums as my main instrument then progressed to guitar and song-writing and other instruments Etc...
 
Colin: To the point were I actually wanted to play music, I'd say 10 or 11. My brother would play The Doors albums around the house, and from the moment I heard that band I thought, "Wow, what's this?" I'd never heard anyone sound like that - and we are talking about a time when I think the biggest band out was 2 Unlimited (yuck) - so hearing them was so refreshing. 

Dave: I think people like music from a very early age and that was the case with me. But in terms of actually playing music, that stems from my grandparents. They bought me a keyboard one Christmas (think I was 8) and had organised some lessons for me, I wasn't good at football or anything so I concentrated everything into my music and its been like that ever since!  

Paul: One of my very earliest memories is my parents front music room, no TV or other distractions, just sheepskin rugs (it was the 70's) and the stereo with a massive vinyl collection. I was always fascinated by the strange new sounds coming from there.

Dave: I started out on guitar and piano at 13, then I think I was put on bass to fill in for a mate or something along those lines. Never looked back since!


Is there a set plan for what lies ahead or are you just enjoying playing your music?

Joe: We have a set plan but also we are enjoying playing LIVE and making music, and also getting to explore different styles of music that you don't tend to hear nowadays, and use that influence in the new songs that are being written.
Colin: I think Joe has pretty much summed it up in his answer. 

Dave: There is a set plan as Joe says, but you never can tell what is around the corner so we will carry on playing and entertaining and hoping that we go onto better things from here.

Paul: There's always new venues and promo work coming up in the pipeline which keeps us keen to progress. We're definitely not stuck in a rut like some bands.

Dave: Enjoying playing the tracks and being back on the live stage


What inspires you when writing your music?

Joe: Everyday issues, conversations with people, news, newspaper headlines and stories.

Colin: Listening to all different genres of music, really, and applying it to what we do. We have a song there on our upcoming mini album that has a sort of West Coast, Cool Jazz feel, and since I've loved listening to people like the Dave Brubeck Quartet for many years and really picked up a lot of ideas and technique from their albums, it was so exciting to playing brushes on something, and for the first time. 
 
Dave: I think this can be a multitude of scenarios which Joe has covered! But it can originate from the most trivial thing or something pretty elaborate. Either way the process of producing a song is one that helps the creative mind. The different aspects that we can explore through music is very exciting. I am an artist that likes to push the melodic and musical structure boundaries but without being too abstract. 

Paul: Sometimes guitar parts simply fall right into place from the feel of the lyrics and melody of a song. Other times Joe may have a particular idea in mind like a Greek bouzouki on a track, YouTube is a great tool for researching new sounds and ideas. 

Dave:  The world around us is the most influential thing we have to use.


Have you ever been in any competitions like battle of bands, etc?

Joe: No not all...I think with competitions like Battle of the bands the winner has already been picked from the start, and the people who are organising the events are just looking for wet behind the ear bands to put bums on seats and make money from them. You have it on the television now on this side of the pond and the other side of the Atlantic only they want the viewing figures and keep people thinking that it's music when it's NOT at all...!
 
Colin: No, and I can't see us ever entering one. Frankly, I think most are fixed. 

Dave: Before the band, yes and I agree with Joe they are the very antithesis of the music industry. They are more or less already won and yes, the industry is very cut-throat and at the end of the day no matter how good your talent it's a popularity contest.  

Paul: Never, to me they are simply following a quick overnight money making formula, I couldn't name any band from those events.

Dave: In previous bands. Never again!


Do you ever get tired of practising together?

Joe: No not at all, I look forward to it all the time!

Colin: No. I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing if I felt that way. 

Dave: Definitely! haha, only joking! No it's great and we tend to get stuff nailed pretty quickly so we're not constantly having to go over songs time after time again. 

Paul: No because someone will always have new material or ideas to try out.

Dave: No, not at all! 


Are there any routines in which you have to start writing music or does it just come to you during the day?

Joe: It comes in strange forms and times for me haha!

Colin: A lot of the time a song is brought in with a pretty solid structure, but there have been times recently when a couple of ideas have developed and took on a life of their own while just playing around with them. Different things come in different ways.  

Dave: Personally for me it's one of two ways. I get a line or a melody and go with it from there or it's a bizarre chord sequence that I'll try to create and then the creative juices start flowing, within a few hours I'll have a song. 

Paul: So long as I'm well fed and the studios warm then I'm good to go.
 
Dave: When needs be!


Finally, what's your opinion on the music industry today?

Joe: I don't pay attention to it, does nothing for me at all.
 
Colin: I think a good proportion of the industry is in a fairly sorry state at the moment and is lacking inspiration. Too many short-term bands who do a pretty OK 1st album, take way too long to release a follow-up only for it to be just a 2nd rate rehash of the 1st, then continue on a downward spiral after that. Something seriously needs shaking up. 

Dave: I think the way it's going depends on what you're into. It's an industry that as soon as something "new", (something old rehashed) comes in the industry get's saturated trying to milk the cash cow dry. I'd be more interested in bands or artists that "defy", in a way, the "social conformity" of popular music. Break the barriers, be different and not be all out for the fame, do it for the sake of your art! There are a lot of great artists out there that are great at what they do and there are some that are not who expect the golden ticket of a lucrative contract just because you play a certain style or act a certain way. That part of the industry infuriates me but I'll stop before I begin!   

Paul: Music having gone digital does have its advantages, bands are now instantly global via the Internet but on the downside that's also led to the sad demise of our high street music shops and TV shows. It's become increasingly difficult to browse for and be exposed to new material.

Dave: Very confusing!



I'd like to thank Joe Symes and The Loving Kind for this fantastic interview! 





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lauren@themusicmanual.co.uk