Formed in Leeds in autumn 2014, masses. are a collective of 4 professional music producers who have spent years perfecting the production of modern pop, rock and electronic music. All the while becoming increasingly exasperated with the sterile, vacuous nature of the records filling the charts.
The band have a clear vision musically, looking to combine British alternative rock with elements of trip-hop and electronica, drawing from the likes of Radiohead, Massive Attack and Pink Floyd.
Lyrically the group steer clear of well trodden paths and look delve into the darker corners of the human condition looking at themes of doubt, loss, fear and confusion.
Their music production and sound engineering backgrounds provide a rock solid base on which the slick live show has been built, with live sound quality being a premium rather than an afterthought. The aim is to set a new benchmark for bringing pristine studio sound into the live experience, to guarantee a great show.
2015 brought 3 singles and an EP from masses. with singles “Dive”, “Waiting” and “In Circles” receiving radio play around the UK and on the BBC stations. The band also toured around the UK supporting the likes of Sundara Karma, Vitamin, Man Made, King No-One and Glass Caves.
CURRENT RELEASE: twelve|twelve (Album Project)
Building on the success of their debut EP “I Couldn’t Be Happier” the band have embarked on an ambitious twelve month release project, twelve|twelve. Releasing a new track on the 1st of each month throughout 2016, culminating in a full album release in 2017. Also the band are looking to document their growth throughout the project with regular blog posts, behind the scenes videos and live-streaming from the studio.
“We already have a number of tracks that are pretty much there in terms of songwriting, but the idea is to produce the record on the fly and then release it as we go” states frontman Cain Cookson. “It’s not like we already have this sat in our back pocket and we’re drip feeding it out. The whole point of this is to see how we develop over a 12 month period and document the best of it on record”
The band have a clear vision musically, looking to combine British alternative rock with elements of trip-hop, drawing from the likes of Radiohead, Massive Attack and Pink Floyd. Where previous releases by the band have been entirely self-produced, this time they will be joined by producer and Embrace/Talk to Angels keyboardist Mickey Dale. A step that has allowed them to focus more fully on the songwriting this time around.
“We’re all record producers, which is great is some ways but have you ever sat with 3 other people and argued about a snare drum sound for 2 hours? Because I have and it’s exhausting! This time we thought let’s let someone else worry about that and we’ll concentrate on that killer chorus!”
LAST RELEASE: In Circles (Single)
“With this song, the aim was to create a great radio single that would sum up our ethos as a band, while providing a catchy singalong chorus that we hope can open us up to a whole new audience. Originally this song was going to be on the previous EP, but we wanted to save it until we were on a roll, for maximum impact. On the surface it’s a great indie alt-pop song with guitars and a nice melody, but if you listen closely you’ll hear a whole world of complexity blossoming out… in the lyrics, in the rhythms, in the layers of vocals and guitars and percussion and synths. This song took 3 solid months work to perfect, and we couldn’t be happier now it’s ready for everyone!”
Keep your eyes peeled for a “Making of In Circles” blog post coming soon, breaking the song down in depth.
PREVIOUSLY: I Couldn’t Be Happier (EP)
“We wanted this record, our debut, to showcase what we’re about as a band… to be a taste of things to come but not to give away the whole show I suppose. We knew the first record would only get a limited audience but we wanted to make a strong start and not release anything half-hearted, so we spent countless hours from December to February trying different vocal harmonies, guitar tones, synth ambience etc, trying to make the biggest impact we could from just 3 songs. It resulted in a record with eclectic influences, over the course of three tracks drawing in sounds from many different genres, but hopefully tying it all together with that “masses” sound.”
Much more in-depth explanations on songwriting processes etc can be found on our blog.