Boulevarde Music & Little Green: Take Your Time (Interview)

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If you’re not familiar with Boulevarde Music, they describe their sound as “chill but full of energy, raw and emotional.  We just want people to connect with the music as we do.”

In this installment of INDEPENDENT MUSICIAN, we’re back with Jordan and Edgar, aka Boulevarde Music who we came across during the Listen Up Music Festival last year in which they qualified into the state finals.  They’ve been writing music together since 2014, teaming up with Aussie and international topliners to create their own take on the indie, electro-pop world.   Take that, alongside song-writing sensibilities well beyond their years, combine it with their truly polished production and you’ve got a recipe for something special.  The unlikely Western Sydney based duo share a passion for contemporary pop production, sound design and visuals.

“Jordan and I have been great friends writing music for 5 years.” says Edgar.  “We understand each other’s tastes – in music, food, wine, sneakers…   In other words, work pretty damn well together in the studio.  I don’t remember a time where a short break from a session hasn’t sparked more ideas!”

Following on from their debut single I Needed You ft. Nick de la Hoyde, their second
release – Plans ft. Aeora, and their third independently released single, Lover – Boulevarde have teamed up with Amy (aka Little Green) bringing to life a salute to an old friend, a message of hope through loss in this new single below – Take Your Time.

The lyrics in Take your time will speak to many, are you able to discuss what the song is about or the story behind it?  In your YouTube video you dedicate the song to someone you lost.

“Jordan was grappling the loss of a good friend at the time, who had taken their own life. He’d expressed a few times before we sat down with Amy (Little Green) that he wanted to write something for his friend.  Looking back, that night was special for the three of us, bonding emotionally to create something that came from such a tough place.   

We wrote the whole track in a few hours that night, the lyrics, melodies, guitar and recorded a scratch vocal.   If you wanted an idea of what the vibe of the studio was that night, that raw emotion in Amy’s voice IS the scratch vocal you hear on the track. It was never re-recorded.”

The lyrics are almost eerie but the smooth tones of Little Green and melodies you use make the song so inviting.   Jordan’s metal passion and your house vibes are what seem to really shape the blending of your two backgrounds in this track.   Was that deliberate?

When it comes to writing, melodies and production, nothing is essentially deliberate.  In the studio, all ideas are welcome and considered.   We usually have an inspiration for a track in the form of a specific sound or percussive ideas, but that’s about it.  We start with a tempo and chord progression then everything else is just what we’re vibing as we go.

There are definitely production elements of Take Your Time which come from those opposing musical worlds, but they’re not deliberate.  We wrote ‘Take Your Time’ for us, with sounds, ideas and elements that are true to what we love.   I guess that shines though more in this track then ever, hey.

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You’ve had several different lead vocalists in your last couple of tracks.  There’s always something familiar about the vocalists you work with yet something new and distinct.   Why did you choose to work with Little Green on this one?

We’ve only known Amy for a few months now, but we can say with no doubt, that you’ll be seeing (and hearing) a whole lot more of her.  We met Amy at a songwriting competition where she performed her track “Sweet Pain” and absolutely blew us both away.   She could sing, play a heap of instruments and write incredible music! We just new right then we had to work with her!

 

There’s a different approach to the music video in comparison to Lover which was a dreamlike montage.  In Take your time the song is personified in the form of dancer, Angus Parent who translates the song into moving art and expression.

 

Did you have a clear vision of what Take Your Time would look like when being embodied as interpretive dance?

When we’re writing lyrics, we draw inspiration from real life experiences.  We like to write in a way where if you had no context as a listener,  you could interpret our songs in your own way through your own experiences, whatever they may be.

Inadvertently, this is what happened with the video for Take Your Time.  There were a couple specific ideas revolving around the structure of the video and the message we wanted it to portray but by the time it came to shoot day, all we had was a team with their own visions for a song they connected with, personally.

That team was; THE amazing producer/director Ellen Dedes-Vallas from Fat Poodle Productions, (who has produced and directed all of our music videos) an incredible dancer in Angus Parent, and Luke Walker, who could easily be one of Australia’s best Videographers.

Moral of the story, if you put highly talented creatives in a room together and give them free reign to create, you get a true representation of their interpretation.  We didn’t learn anything “new” that day, but we’re definitely learning that “Take Your Time” is resonating to people in amazing ways.  We can’t ask for anything more than that.

Their storytelling is one of continual discovery, exploration and evolution.

 

“When we first started out making electronic music, and I think it’s fair to say most producers starting out struggle with this as well, we would simply put too many elements into a song.  There was always just too much going on.   In recent times, we have really come to appreciate the complexity and beauty in simplicity. 

When we are producing we are constantly questioning how much value an element adds – is it worth being there?  We love creating productions that are stripped back yet impactful and in order to do this we try and make sure each sound is special so that it doesn’t have to be buried in the mix or reverbed out.”

How do you know when a track is ready?

If a track gives you goosebumps or makes you dance from the other side of the room, chances are it’s done!

Outside the studio, Edgar and Jordan seem like two ordinary lads you’d hang out with at the pub pouring life experience into their melodies and lyrics.

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What was the first gig you ever performed and did it live up to your expectations?

The first gig we played together was a DJ set at The Mill Hotel in Milperra a few years back.  Littered with horrible transitions and technical difficulties, luckily there were only a handful of people there to experience the horror unfold [Laughs].

When you started making real money as an independent musician, what was one of the first pieces of equipment you bought?

A subpac – for those who don’t know its a module that straps to your studio chair which allows you to “hear” bass through vibration. Life changing.

What are the Top 3 songs of other artists on your Spotify / Itunes or Soundcloud playlist?

Edgars Top 3 are:
Hayden James – Just Friends
Dom Dolla – San Frandisco
Mansionair – Alibi

Jordans Top 3 are:
Billie Eilish – everything I wanted
Hayley Kiyoko – I Wish
Shallou, Daya- Older

When you’re not in the studio or playing a set, what’s your idea of a great movie to watch when spending the night in? 
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We both fancy a good sci-fi, “The Mandolorian” was great and Jordan can’t stop going on about “The Expanse”. 

I really loved the production of “1917” it’s actually what inspired the music video to be shot all in one take!

When you’re on the road on tour or working late in the studio, what’s one food / meal you’re eating alot of?

Our absolute favourite studio snack are the ‘Mission’ chilli and lime tortilla chips! YUM

Take your time was released just last Friday – click here to Listen, and they will also be featuring in the upcoming Mental Health Music Festival, Torch Fest at Factory Theatre in Marrickville.  Follow and Bookmark this page to keep up with their upcoming gigs around Sydney.

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