We interviewed alternative pop group Avante Black to talk their new track Make A Mess, future album plans, upcoming gigs and more.
Interview by Jane Howkins
Photo by Olivia Richardson
You recently released a new track called Make A Mess. What can you tell us about it? How has the reception been so far?
It’s quite an emotional song for me, from a time when a lot changed in my life. I found strength in it, but also weakness. Breaking up is never easy but it’s only fair to be straightforward about it. The reception has been incredible, I was so so nervous releasing it as it is so close to my heart.
You previously released a track called Drug Money, which landed you in the Hype Machine top 3. How did that feel? Did that give you high hopes for future releases?
It felt absolutely incredible, I couldn’t believe it at first! It definitely gave me a lot of hope and confidence which was well needed.
Do you have any plans to release a full length album at any point in the near future? If so, what can you tell us about that?
I’ve got a good stock of songs, I’m right now figuring out which ones that could go on a future album. I just try to be as creative and productive as possible. There’s so much to be inspired by and I see and learn something new everyday. It’s gonna be tough deciding, haha!
Your line-up is quite diverse, with members hailing from the UK, Italy, and Sweden. How did you all meet, and how did the band come about?
Me and Dean go back years from when he played with my friend Liam in Various Cruelties. I showed him some recordings and he was happy to help me out. Same goes for Emil whom I met through our Swedish friends, he’s been a massive help with all the technical stuff. We finally found Gabs after a few months through a former bass player, and we’ve grown together like a little family.
You’re now based in London, in the UK. Why did you decide to settle here? Are there more musical opportunities here than in Italy or Sweden?
I got a scholarship to go to The Swedish School in London and spent a year here when I was 17. I found it really hard to be back in Sweden a year after that. I had got to know all these amazing people, and I finally felt like I was home. I wouldn’t say there are more or less opportunities here but definitely the buzz of London and the diversity is hard to find anywhere else I’ve been.
There’s quite a psychedelic sound to your music. Is that something that has influenced you, and if so, what is it about that that you like so much? What bands from that genre do you particularly enjoy?
I loved psychedelic music as a teenager. I loved the noise and the riffs. The Melvins, Captain Beefheart etc. There are so many bands it could fill a book, I wanted to hear and know everything back then. But of course Black Sabbath was and is one of my favourite bands. Also, the first time I heard A Half Full Glass Of Wine with Tame Impala it felt like being reborn. I couldn’t understand how something so new and fresh could sound so classic.
What else influences you as a band, and who have you been listening to recently?
Recently I’ve been obsessed with Frank Ocean. Sometimes when I hear something new I just start singing and improvising on top of the song, and after a while a new song appears.
Do you have any gigs coming up? If so, where and when are they?
We’re doing the Dot to Dot festival, and we’re so excited to play outside of London. Also some other festivals throughout the summer!
Why do you think people should come and see Avante Black live, and what can people expect from one of your gigs?
Well, like any artist I think I have something to say and some feelings to express that I’d love to share with the audience. I’d say expect it to be intimate and quite grungy.
Any last words for the fans?
We’re hoping to see you all very soon! And stay put for our upcoming video, promising lasers and leather.