“Let yourself feel” laments Bright Light Bright Light on his latest single, Open Heart. Well it seems, in all that he does, musical artist Bright Light Bright Light demands nothing less than for the listener to open up, experience and feel.
We had the pleasure of attending Bright Light Bright Light’s show at Joe’s Pub two weeks ago in New York. 3 days later, we were happily playing his EP Make Me Believe in Hope on repeat. Exclusively with the Arcade, Bright Light Bright Light takes a moment to share the secrets and the moods of his upcoming project In Your Care.
1. Where are you from? How did music play a role in your life growing up?
I grew up between two small villages in the valleys of South Wales. Music was my link to the wider world I guess, so it had a huge role in connecting me to a world that didn’t involve rolling hills, farms and open spaces. I listened to music all the time, from as long as I can remember.
2. Whats the significance of your name?
It’s a line from Gremlins, one of my favourite films. And I thought it worked as it suggests something pop and shiny, or stage lights. Something very alive.
3. Your sound has this incredible balance of throwback and future in the production. What influenced the sound?
My love of 80s/90s house and dance music influenced the production a lot, but I din’t want to just replicate it – partly because some of it just can’t be improved – but I wanted to put some of its energy in the mix while still making something that sounded alive in the current day. But i like to give little nods to some of my influences like ‘Immature’ sharing a title with a song from one of my favourite Björk records ‘Homogenic’, or “I want someone who reaches out” responding to Alison Limerick’s “don’t reach out for me with an apology” in ‘Where Love Lives’. I studied English, and intertextuality was a big part of lots of my favourite texts, so I guess it stuck! I also co-produce some songs with The Invisible Men, Andy Chatterley and Ian Masterson, so the meeting of our minds is a nice blend of influences. I think collaboration really unlocks parts of your mind that can be otherwise undiscovered.
4. How did the new project/ep come together?
The new EP is a collection of songs that I’d been working on, two new (‘In Your Care’ and ‘An Open Heart’) that I was very excited to share, moving on from the last record thematically and in terms of production, and two older songs (‘Same Dream’ and ‘Movement In The Dark’) that didn’t quite fit on the last record. I like with EPs that you can be a little more playful than with a “single” where the focus is on one song, or an “album” where you want a real coherent personality. It’s nice to stitch together a few moods in an EP, like a bridge between two points, and show a few different angles of your writing and production.
5. What can we expect from you in 2014?
New material and touring. I’m finishing up my second album now, so it will be coming out in the following year, which I’m very excited about!