Nova Waves – Going The Distance (Q&A, and more …)

Sweet Sweet Music spoke to Frank about the BMG deal, 100,000 streams on Spotify, and about how to produce a record when bandmembers live across the globe.

What was the moment you knew you were on to something?

Probably around last year when we started receiving very positive feedback on our new singles from influencers and a wider audience. The climax for sure was BMG offering us an editing and a licensing contract end of last year. We are really honored and very excited for what lies ahead, bringing us to a whole new world. We’ve since released our new album “Going The Distance” on 15 January on all platforms and are super stoked by how well it is doing so far. 

How did this record come together?

“Going The Distance” is our second album and most likely the most accomplished. We took our time to perfect all the songs focusing on vocals / instrumental arrangements and structures to make them as catchy as possible. The songwriting and recording process was the same as the first record because everything was recorded from each other’s homes (apart from the acoustic drums which require studio recording) with Fred living in France, Cris and Higinio living in Spain, and myself (Frank) living in Australia. All tracks are shared through a cloud and the songs are perfected until we are ready to enter a studio for final mixing and mastering, which was done last year in Cadiz with Indie Guru Paco Loco.

When did you decide to start asking for opinions on the new songs?

Last year was the year when we’ve decided to share our music with the entire world! We had the feeling it was time to give it a go. So we’ve started to reach out to music influencers, playlist curators, blogs. The feedback was very positive and encouraging. The general feedback we did receive and did not expect was about Nova Waves’ unique set up, with each musician living thousands of kilometers apart, still able to write and record together as if we were all living in the same city. 

The meaning of success has changed over the years. What would success look like for the new record?

Very relevant question especially with this pandemic which hit the whole world last year. Also with Nova Waves specific set up, we are not able to jump in a tour van and hit the road, something that we would love to do one day though!! So we measure success from people listening to and enjoying our music, expressing their feelings towards the songs, and sharing the tunes around. The music influencers’ feedback is also crucial to gauge the potential of our music. We also produce music videos, providing another dimension to the songs.

The album has done well on Spotify so far, with more than 100,000 streams in just 2 weeks with high numbers in unexpected countries such as Italy, Russia, Sweden, or Chile!! With music online streaming, there is huge potential to reach out to a worldwide audience in no time which would have taken years of touring in the past.

As an artist, you chose to show your emotions to the world. Is it always comfortable to do so?

Yes, this is something quite special to do and can be intimidating at the start, but it is rewarding to see our audience’s emotions connect with our music. It is truly the greatest feeling on earth. Music, as an art, has this unique way of connecting people through various senses and carry them to this other dimension, unconsciously and peacefully.

Music videos can be more intimidating as you are directly sharing your life.

You can pick 3 co-writers to write new songs with. Who? … and Why?

I would pick the following ones which I truly admire and respect (sure the other Nova Waves members would have different ones as we have quite eclectic influences!):

John Gourley (from Portugal The Man): He has produced the finest and original music lately, with crazy song structures and lyrics and the most incredible voice.

Stefan Malkmus (from Pavement): His laid-back and sarcastic attitude transpires through his lyrics and music, he probably makes the coolest indie tunes ever produced.

Kurt Cobain (from Nirvana): In just 5 years he took the world by storm with his raw and hypersensitive songwriting, backed by the finest drum and bass section any songwriter could hope for. Simple songs but so powerful.

What’s the gig you will always remember? And why?

Pavement in Marseille back in 1996 touring on Wowee Zowee album. It was such a fun and wild gig. The band had 2 drummers and some crazy stuff happening on stage!

Green Day and Arctic Monkeys in Nimes’ Roman amphitheater, wild and sweaty crowd, I lost my voice and was super stoked by how they connected so well with their public. 

Separated by distance but united by a love of sunny harmonies and fuzzy guitars, NOVA WAVES is a band of long-time friends using modern technology to spread their classic sound around the world. They draw from the songcraft of the British invasion and the golden age of Indie pop to create an irresistible sound laden with rich group harmonies.

Each member of the group had their distinctive musical career and it was a joined concert that encouraged them to form NOVA WAVES before life spread them around the globe.  Residing in Australia, France, and Spain, they have recorded their albums of surf-inspired psych-pop remotely, allowing the songs to grow organically as each member added their unique creative input.

What initially started as a studio project between friends quickly turned into a series of songs and albums rich in meetings and collaboration: from « «Dreamworld » released in 2016 to « Going the Distance » made with Paco Loco in 2020, NOVA WAVES shake up the limits of musical collaboration for the pleasure of our ears!

NOVA WAVES are Cris (guitars, bass, keys, vocals), Fred (bass, guitars, keys, vocals), Frank (guitars, ukulele, keys, vocals), and Higinio (drums, vocals).

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