Interview with Montreal Rockers Noyze

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri. Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

Noyze is a band whose music is a mix between ambient rock, indie and alternative. The group was founded in 2012 but the current and final formation was finalized last year. In the beginning there was Adrien Harvey doing the vocals and Alexis Danetz as the guitar lead. Chester Alarie (bass), Mat Roots (drums) and Louis Philippe Poisson (keyboard) joined them later.

Combining rich tones, elaborated melodies and the interesting voice of Adrien, the group claims to be different and authentic. We met at l’Assomoir on Notre Dame Street, for an interview on the night of the launch of their first album From Here On Out.

Sarah Bemri (SB): How was the group born? How did you meet?

Adrien Harvey (AH): It has been technically three years that we are together. Mat Roots, the drummer and Louis Philippe Poisson aka Fish the keyboard player have joined a year ago. Chester Alarie has been playing with us for two years now. From Here On Out is our first album with this formation.

SB: How did you choose the name of the band?

AH: It might seem a bit too obvious. In the beginning, Alexis and I were trying to find a name for the band. We have always tried to do something out of the box. We thought that we were making noise, noise that people liked and then we tried shaping it our way and twisting it. So we just played with the letters to give character; it’s also what we do with our music. We are constantly trying to infuse our own essence in what we do.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

SB: You use the expression “Show Band” to describe your band. Can you explain why?

AH: Yes, in fact at one point it got lost in the industry, although it’s making a comeback now. There was a time when it was necessary that at live performance wasn’t that important. And that is still the case for many artists. And nowadays, we don’t make money from CDs sells anymore; we make money with the shows. We do not fight against the bands that don’t perform live, but we try to fight against the best. Although, “fight” may be a big word. But having listened to artists who performed live, our goal is to be infallible and to provide a great live show. In addition, we collaborate with people who have always worked in this environment and have always had this standard and therefore there, it has been instilled in us. So we really want to offer a show worthy of the name to the people who come to see us and be pleased with our performance.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

SB: What are your influences and inspirations other than the Beatles and Pink Floyd?

Chester Alaire (CA): We have different influences. For me, it’s Pink Floyd and Kings of Leon.

Adrien Harvey (AH): For me it’s Queens of the Stone Age, Foo Fighters or Pink Floyd.

Mat Roots: I have metal influences such as Iron Maiden.

Louis Philippe Poisson aka Fish (F): I’m more of a blues guy.

Alexis Danetz (AD): Hendrix.

AH: Well, we have different backgrounds and it shows in our music. In the beginning we were scared of that. But we listen to a popular European band called Biffy Clyro and even if the songs have different styles, you can always feel the essence of the band. And that is our aim too. We don’t want to make ten same songs on the album and then repeat ourselves on the next album. We are creating, so we should explore. And the cohesion between the songs will be felt in the general mood rather than in the chords or distortions. So we want to have a recognizable sound, which is not necessarily orthodox or common.

SB: How did you end up playing music? Did you begin playing young? Any of you have musician parents?

AD: I think it’s a mix. For some of us it was the musician parents, while others had a passion to listen to music, so obviously it was transmitted. Especially when you listen to what we consider good music, at some point it rubs off on you and makes you feel like doing it yourself and create a product like that.

AH: As in any creative environment, and for us to be able to make our music, to make people happy and to earn a living out of it, would be a real accomplishment for us. We went on tour and we didn’t make money out of it. But as already mentioned by Alexis, making music is a need for us, so we would not change it for the world. We do full-time in the studio and it is not paid time. And having around us, people who support us and believe in us is very important and encourages us to move forward.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

SB: You have already talked about tours and concerts, what’s the best memory you had in a concert?

MR: We played in Club Soda as the first part of the Pink Floyd tributes Echoes and in my opinion it was the best experience within the band. The venue was full, there were around 1200 or 1300 people. Echoes picked us to do the first part and we were very excited to play.

AH: I think that every show is unique on its own. As long as you’re playing and even if there is only a small group of people, but they’re excited to be there and at the end of the show they embark with you in your show, I think it’s worth it and it’s memorable.

F: The energy in each show is different. Sometimes the energy between us is not perceptible but sometimes it is so powerful that it’s transmitted to the public and that is an incredible feeling

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

Noyze. Photo Sarah Bemri.

SB: How about an incident or a funny story that the public doesn’t know about you?

AH: We had a clandestine vehicle. It was our first band van, a cargo van and we had screwed in some seats. It is illegal and not safe at all. At first, the seats were fastened with straps. While on tour in Quebec in September, but it was a cold September, so we were off to Quebec City and we were on makeshift seats. I was in front, I was sweating but the others in the back were freezing so they had blankets and coats because it was not isolated at all. In addition, there was a curtain which served as a barrier. It looked like we were transporting illegals.

SB: Your dream collaboration and dream venue?

AH: Queens of the Stone Age or Foo Fighters in Wembley Stadium.

SB: Your album was been released online on August 31, and tonight is the launch party. What are your future projects for this album? Any tour planned?

F: Actually, we would like to do a tour in Europe. A tour in Quebec this winter would be interesting as well. We already have a few dates planned in Quebec. But we would like to do a Canadian and maybe an American tour.

AH: Tonight we present the album to the public and that will be what we will play during our shows. We are doing one show weekly at the moment; certain weeks are busier though.

The concert was a success both in terms of energy conveyed by the band and energy between the members themselves. We dived with them in their world with incredible ease and indulged in this moment of sharing. We could clearly see the passion of the musicians and the pleasure they took in playing in front of their audience. To discover their latest album From Here On Out, you can check it out here.

Noyze’s release party for From Here On Out on September 11.

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