Thursday, 23 February 2012

AZURE BLUE













You can't beat listening to a song which has such an instant effect on you, I fell for Azure Blue's 'Dreamy Eyes' immediately. Soaring guitars, packed with synth and heart-wrenching lyrics, have a listen and enchant yourself.

First off, where are you in the world right now and what're you working on?
I'm at home in Stockholm listening to Kraftwerk. Yesterday I bought a new analog synth, so I'm looking forward to trying it out a bit. I'm working on new material.

Could you give a brief history Azure Blue?
Azure Blue is my third musical project in ten years. It was born in the summer two years ago after I had moved from Gothenburg to Stockholm. At first I thought I was writing for a third album for my second band Irene, but as I got deeper into the project I realized that this had to be a new thing. I was all into drum machines and smooth synths and lyrically this is the most mature thing I've done.

Who did you grow up listening to?
This could be a long list, but my very first 7" single was Paul McCartney's "No More Lonely Nights". I really loved Limahl's "Never Ending Story", A-ha's "Take On Me" and the soundtrack for Dirty Dancing. Hehe. I was a bit of a young nerd in the 80's knowing the name of all the hits like Vanessa Paradis's "Joe Le Taxi" and George Harrison's "Set On You". Then I had an era of hard rock and grunge for a few years before I discovered The Smiths and all the britpop in the 90's. I had a pretty peculiar period at 20 when I claimed that listening to any song not performed by Scott Walker was a waste of three minutes. Haha. Then came the alternative country scene and the classics. During my years as an artist for Labrador records it was a lot of pop of course. I still have a pop snob in me, but I have a very eclectic taste so if it's a great track guilty pleasures by Meat Loaf are as welcome as Frank Ocean or some UK bass like Rustie.

Tell us a bit about the most recent song you've written
I wrote a song last week that hasn't got a title yet. I don't like the label "synth pop", I prefer "pop", "electro pop" or "dream pop", but it's pop with synths. I normally write all the lyrics at once but this one was sad at first, then it got angry, and now I think it's going to have to be sad again.

What's the strangest subject you've ever written a song about?
I thought it was pretty awkward when I wrote two very sad songs for my best friend when we had problems in our friendship. This was for my first band Laurel Music. We were a quite emotional semi-acoustic pop trio.

What would you say was the perfect environment or situation to listen to your music in?
In the car! It sounds awesome. I love the beats, we really got them the way I wanted them.

What other artists are you into at the moment?
Right now I'm into new pop like swedes FANNY, Noonie Bao, Dante etc, dance music like Kuedo, Rustie and Star Slinger and new ambient stuff with nice synths, such as Space Dimension Controller, Dylan Ettinger and Oneothrix Point Never. At the very moment I'm listening a lot to the minimal beauty of Kraftwerk's first three albums. I've listened to so much music in my days, but there are still huge treasures left to discover at certain points when it all makes sense and clicks. I've never really given Kraftwerk the time they deserve before but now I'm ready for them. To be honest most of my life is built up around new music. I work as a promoter and agent and I book a lot of much bigger bands than my own project. I really love a lot of new stuff and working with new talents.

Where would you love to tour?
I've toured a lot in Europe already with my bands, but I would really love to go to The USA, South America, Asia and Australia too.

Finally, what's next for you, future plans and such?
The tour is going right now on weekend basis, we're doing our first Stockholm show since the album came out next Friday in a 900 capacity venue, that will be great, then we have a whole schedule in the making, we've just been in Spain and we're going on more tours in Europe this spring. We're even going over to Russia in April. That will be a thrill. Then I'll keep on writing, recording, promoting club nights, DJ'ing and working. I often joke and call myself The Hardest Working Man In Pop. To the kids out there: There are no shortcuts... Work hard but follow your hearts! XX // Tobias



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