Soft Set Channel Indie-Pop Head-Spaces as they Render a Vivid Daydream-Fantasy on "7 on Up"



The life long friends and collaborators James Gray and Nathan Athay have developed as musicians both collectively and independently throughout their time ricocheting through a revolving door of projects embellishing descriptors like Shoegaze, Indie-Rock, and even Space Rock bands.


As time has shown, their expertise and character are sought out on projects of these varieties, but it's not their most customary archetype, noting influential artists from The Stone Roses and The Smiths to My Bloody Valentine as leading inspirations for the figures they manifest in their Indie-Pop amalgamating records. This new coming year sees them spreading their artistic wings as Soft Set, a collaboration of world-class quality produced by the iconic Mark Gardener. With the upswell of new-formed artistic spirits from this veteran supporter, the two lifelong friends bring us their best music yet, in the new anticipated record, "Love And Dancing," and in the highlight opening track, "7 on Up."



"7 on Up," opens on the dissolving edges of an alluring drone that resembles something out of our deepest daydreams, and flourishes with a buzzworthy bestowment of wonder when it lays into the first beats. The groove here is straightforward and Lo-Fi, but punchy and weighted in how it lands healthy in our chests with an alluring drive.


When the harmonies of James and Nathan synergize together over the top-line, and amongst the silver-lined expanses of this jovial Indie-Pop fantasy, we're instantly enamored; drooling over the vibes oozing from this cut. Its a musical venture that finds adhesiveness through a sparkling guitar riff on one end, and a mystical hymn-like chorus on the other; lifting the weights of gravity from our shoulders as it crescendos with the whispering lines: "cross your fingers, cross your heart, here we are, here we are."


There's no escaping the all-embracing nature of this lovingly produced daydream-pop endeavor, and for Soft Set, it feels like a genuine representation of the bond they still hold together as musicians and ultimately, as friends.



Hello Soft Set and welcome to BuzzMusic. What has been the best part about working with Producer Mark Gardener for this record?


Mark was amazing from start to finish! The best part about working with Mark was his expertise and experience around the studio. We learned so much from him and it’s something we’ll never forget. We’re very grateful to have had the opportunity to work with one of our heroes. Absolute legend!

What do you think is the reason both of you click together as both friends and musical collaborators over the years?


Great question! I think we work together so well because we’ve been playing music together for over 20 years and our influences are pretty much the same. We both love harmonies and we’re suckers for a great hook. Haha! We also have the utmost respect for one another and we’re very lucky to have the friendship that we have and don’t take it for granted.

If you could choose a few words that would act as the epigraph to your coming record, what would you want to say and why?


The underlying theme to this record is nostalgia and that was totally unintentional. It just constantly popped up during the songwriting process which was a great surprise! We’ve also heard words like “honest”, “undisguised” and “sincere” when we played the record for friends and family. Hopefully, they weren’t just being nice! Haha!

Can we expect to see any surprise guest features on "Loving and Dancing?"


We do have a special guest on the album, but it’s not who you think! She’s not a celebrity, but she’s incredibly talented and we’re very thankful that she agreed to play on one of the songs on the album! Thanks, Madeleine!

What has been keeping you inspired throughout 2020?


2020 has been a rough one on all of us and it was difficult especially at the end of March and April up here in Toronto and I’m sure everywhere else when COVID hit. We couldn’t go to the studio for almost 3 months and even when we were allowed to go, it just wasn’t the same for the first month we came back. We’re still being extremely diligent and wiping the place down before we get started just to be safe, but yeah…we’re happy to be back rehearsing for live shows and working on new tunes for 2021!

 

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