Born and raised in Romania, Rian Cult grew up listening to many European rock and hip-hop influences. Now attending Berklee College of Music, Rian focused on more pop inspirations such as Phil Collins, Ed Sheeran and Sting. Rian Cult began as a drummer, then started playing guitar and singing. In 2018, he began pursuing a solo career as a singer/songwriter and producer. Rian wrote music for artists from everywhere. His songwriting style can be compared to Julia Michaels, LAUV, Halsey and Ella Mai.
Rian Cult’s newest single “Lies” is an upbeat pop hit about betrayal within a relationship. Because of Rian’s expansive musical knowledge, he is able to turn a dreary subject into a party track. “Lies” fuses modern dance pop sounds with more European and retro vibes through subtle horns, funky guitar and electronic tones. Rian Cult’s childhood influences and his more modern pop inspirations mesh together to create a unique track. Rian’s vocals are similar to Ed Sheeran in tone, but Rian Cult is too individual to be compared. Rian sings, “Oh you can’t fool me, it’s funny you see. Your mind is with him even when you’re laying next to me” to further explain the theme of the ironically fast paced song about a cheating lover. Rian Cult’s newest release “Lies” has relatable lyrics for any listener to grasp, while still enjoying the catchy melody being delivered. His strive to reach audiences and fans on a personal level is off to an incredible beginning. I can’t wait to keep up with Rian Cult to see where this journey takes him.
Listen to "Lies" here and get to know more about Rian Cult below!
Hi Rian Cult! Can you start by telling our readers more about your background? When did you move to Boston?
Of course! I was born in Romania, on the coast of the Black Sea and thanks to my dad, I picked up drums at around 10 years old. I played and did gigs around the country for 8 years until I decided to move forward and make an actual living out of it, which for someone in my country was pretty scary because you can only get to a certain point with music. So, I took a leap of faith and applied for Berklee College of Music, and to my surprise, I got in. in 2016 everything changed for me, all the connections I started to make and all the people I've been working with ever since have brought me a step closer to becoming the artist I've always dreamt of becoming. Being in Boston and New York back and forth for 3 years has really made a difference on how I think of music, especially with this new wave of amazing artists that bring their best to the table!
We love your new track “Lies”! Can you tell us more about the meaning behind the lyrics?
I think of this track as the foundation for my sound, it's me. It was born during a time when I was overwhelmed by my personal and professional life and I was writing 1 or 2 songs a day. "Lies" wrote itself in a couple of hours and I didn't pay attention to it at that time, but at its core, it was the simplest, most genuine message. I always try to make my songs relatable for the listeners and I think "Lies" does just that. The lyrics talk about an affair and how the other person feels that even though someone is really good at hiding it. The lyrics in the beginning state how one might rush into believing without any actual proof but feels that the vibe is different. Sometimes when a relationship is like the East Coast weather, you can kind of tell that there's stuff to talk about. The song has a very upbeat and happy vibe for a song that's about cheating and disloyalty and that's because I tried to incorporate in the message the fact that we don't lose anything when something like this happens, we just get better and better at sensing these things.
What’s your writing process like?
I have 3 main methods I use unconsciously. When I write I try to be as genuine as possible, to be myself, so I usually think of how I'm feeling and assimilate it with an action or a memory and base it off of that. Sometimes I just see or hear a simple but interesting word or phrase and use it as a title or as the main idea and start writing around it. Other times a simple and catchy melody does the trick and I try as much as possible to be true to the melody and build the lyric scheme and syllables to fit the melody. I always believed that any good melody can be a catchy melody as long as you put the right words to the right notes and repeat them enough to stick in someone's mind. I give a lot of credit for my writing to "Swagg" Harris, and amazing producer and songwriter who's been incredibly helpful at giving tips and insights about how changing a few words can make a huge difference from taking a good song to a great song. I've been co-writing intensively lately and I've learned so much from that as well, sometimes it's so much better than writing alone, especially if you're writing over an already produced track.
What made you begin to pursue a solo career as an artist?
For me, it's all about making listeners feel something. Being behind the drums for 8 years I've always been more than jealous on the vocalists I played with because want it or not, they delivered the message and the vibe of the songs to the public and I wanted to do that. I slowly started to try and make it possible for me, so I picked up the guitar and keys then started writing and singing. I got such a drive to pursue the solo artist career after seeing artists such as Ed Sheeran, Phil Collins, Sting and Peter Gabriel perform live, how they made it seem that in the moment, the song they were singing was everything to them and I related to that. You know how when you listen to a song, you get those chills and you're like " Damn, that was so good, I wish I wrote that", that's what I want too. I want to inspire and give listeners the feeling they need when they need it. I want people to feel a connection with my music and go home and be inspired to do anything. At the end of the day, it's all about going to sleep with a smile on your face and I want to give that, even if it lasts for a night.
How does “Lies” compare to something you wrote when you first started songwriting?
I think I've come a long way since I first started songwriting and looking back, there was a clear evolution in both songwriting and producing. It's also because the trend has been changing a lot in the past 3-4 years and I've been trying to get ahead of it with whatever I'm writing and especially producing tracks. My first songs were missing some important elements but they didn't lack the message which was good. At first, I was making a lot of acoustic vibe songs, more like Fleetwood Mac combined with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, a lot of 80's inspired music blended with acoustic guitar and singer-songwriter elements. Now it has evolved into a combination between 80's groove and modern vocals and lyrics. Most of my inspiration comes from Charlie Puth, The S.O.S Band, Michael Jackson, Duran Duran and Stevie Wonder. I feel that "Lies" is taking me on the path that I want to go and I know I'll get there sooner or later!
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