Sometime last autumn I got onto a new Brighton band called IYES. I thought they were kind of like The xx, but bigger. Then I heard more and it was clear that comparison was a little too simple. Out of the three tracks I’ve featured, 2 made my best of the months and the third, well its only just turned May…
I chatted to the duo about lighthouses, Brighton, dream line ups, Roger Bacon and influences.
Who are IYES?
Melis Soyaslanova and Josh Christopher
How did the two of you come together?
We met coincidentally through mutual friends but it wasn’t like we instantly felt the need to write music together. We both come from quite different musical environments so at first I was quite surprised how well it worked combined together.
How do you go about “creating unforgettable pop melodies across the alt-pop spectrum”?
It’s different each time we write. Sometimes it’s a very natural, spontaneous process. Sometimes writing and recording is a lengthy process and requires a lot of patience, because Josh pays a lot of attention to production as well. Each song is a brand new challenge for us cause we experiment with sound and genre in the studio.
“Daddy” is an instrumental, did you have vocals for it?
Yeah we did. Melis wrote a really long poem that goes with the music about her relationship with her dad. We only performed it live once, at our first ever show.
Have you ever been to a Lighthouse?
Josh: I’ve been to someone’s lighthouse that they turned into a real house. It was cool.
What’s good in Brighton?
Josh: Nightlife and the women.
When you have writers block, what gets the creative flow going again?
Usually, we both get writers block when we’re happy and satisfied with life. Like at the moment we are. What usually inspires us music wise are negative emotions towards other people, sadness and stuff like that.
Who would be your dream collaboration, dead or alive?
Melis: Pharell Williams/N.E.R.D./Neptunes. I ADORE HIM. Or James Blake. Or Arcade Fire.
Josh: Obviously working with Paul McCartney or someone like that would be ace.
What’s the first album/song you ever bought?
What’s the last album/song you want to listen to?
Melis: I really want to listen to the new Yeah Yeah Yeah’s album. Still haven’t but I’m sure it’s amazing. It’s hard keeping up these days as there seem to be a lot of (great) records coming out this year, so listening to what other people do and simultaneously making music yourself is quite confusing cause it sometimes makes you wanna sound like something you really like at the moment.
In imagination land I’m putting on a HUGE festival and asking you to pick my three headlines for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, who are they?
SAT: Bon Iver
Justin Bieber said that he hoped Anne Frank would have been a ‘Belieber’, which historial figure do you think would have dug your music?
What’s your current obsession at the moment?
Josh is obsessed with Purdey’s Rejuvenate atm. I am obsessed with my basil plant.
Would you rather have a puppy sized elephant or an elephant sized puppy?
Elephant sized puppy.
Was “Call Me Maybe” one of the best songs of 2012? If not, what was?
No it wasn’t. Josh says it was 212 by azealia banks, by far. I really loved Matilda by Alt-J, I thought the whole album was one of the best things of 2012.
What’s next in 2013?
We have big plans but we’ll make you wait and see. Ha
As this is I Think You’ll Like This Song, what song do you think we’d like?
Our next song. which is gonna be released soon!