(By: Josie Mills)
Black is officially the new orange – at least when it comes to music.
Toronto-based electro-rock band Blajk (pronounced “black”) played a great set full of fun synths to dance to when RUtv News saw them at Bestival Toronto. An awesome group of fans was in the crowd singing along to their songs “Good Liars,” “Lost” and more, and those fans continue to show their support at shows and on social media.
The five-piece consists of Jordan Radics on vocals, Paul Doherty on guitars, Brent Gordon on guitar, Tom Conrad on bass and keyboards and Raymond McTaggart on drums. We talked to the band backstage at Bestival Toronto about their upcoming EP, musical influences and favourite songs to play live.
You guys have gotten a lot of attention through digital sharing like Spotify, and many critics have said you’re fast becoming an “overnight success.” How do you feel about the success of the band so far?
Tom: We got a little boost on Spotify and we were put on some big playlists and it did a lot for us, but we’ve still got a long way to go. It has definitely been a good help.
Jordan: There was a lot of back work before we put anything out.
Tom: Once we [did] put it out, we got some great recognition for it pretty quickly on the blogosphere.
Which song would you suggest for people who are listening to you for the very first time?
Tom: I usually say “Lost.” It’s probably our favourite and the least known of all of them.
Jordan: I would say “Lost” or “Good Liars.”
Tom: “Good Liars” is like a good all-encompassing example of our sound.
How would you guys describe your live set for people who haven’t seen you yet?
Jordan: Energetic, moody and groovy! It’s a good time.
I noticed a lot of dancing, especially on Jordan’s end.
Ray: He makes up for us. (laughs)
Jordan: I make up for what they don’t do in the jiggy realm!
You guys mentioned on stage that you’re releasing a new EP this month. Tell us about that!
Tom: Still moody and groovy, but a little bit darker.
Jordan: It’s like driving music, or like we’ve been told “sexy music.”
— RUtv News (@RUtvNews) June 12, 2016
What is your favourite song of yours to play to live?
Tom: For me, it’s “Zepher.” You guys won’t know it yet because it’s on the new EP but it’s fun.
You have said in other interviews that you guys have been influenced by the sounds of The 1975 and The Neighbourhood. Has that changed for the upcoming EP?
Tom: I wouldn’t necessarily say we’re influenced, but you could say we are similar in a lot of ways with our aesthetic and sound. We’re channeling a lot more older funk and some contemporary stuff like Purity Ring so a lot of those new really synthy sounds really come into our production. Older funk is really what we enjoy.
What is your dream musical collaboration?
Tom: Frank Ocean!
If we ever get something from him!
Jordan: I know! Even Adele commented that it has been a really long time.
Tom: The next album is with us. If you’re listening, Frank, we’re down to do something.
Jordan: Hit up Blajk for a feature!
Here at Bestival, who are you guys looking forward to see the most?
Tom: We wanted to see Tame Impala, but we’re professionals so we spent our time rehearsing.
Raymond: Grimes! I saw her once before and she was stellar.
What do you guys do outside the band or in your free time?
Tom: Free time… what is that?
Jordan: We all have jobs; we’re still pretty busy working full time.
Tom: To fund this and get things off the ground, it takes a while.
Jordan: Long walks on the beach!
What is next for you guys after the EP comes out?
Tom: Make another one!
Jordan: We’re just going to keep writing and playing and hopefully a tour.