The Joy Formidable’s five essential bands that shaped them

The Joy Formidable are the latest band to give us an all access pass to the inner workings of their creative minds. Well, that’s how we like to look at it as they reveal the artists who’ve influenced their sound up until now.

In their words, “Here’s some bands that we grew up listening to; how they’ve shaped our sound is a mystery, other than they made us love music.”

1. Gene Pitney 

“My mum had a lot of Gene Pitney vinyl singles when I was growing up and I loved his distinctive voice and the drama to songs like Backstage. I do admire those big emotional crescendos.” [RB]

GENE PITNEY - Backstage

2. Elvis Costello

“He’s a big inspiration to me; his was the first gig I went to, first songbook and I played one of his video compilations to death when I was 8-years-old. I think he’s had an impression on me lyrically when it comes to wordplay and philosophically as an artist who pushes the boundaries with every album.” [RB]

Elvis Costello 'She'

3. Jimi Hendrix

“Hendrix ultimately got me into music. I was too busy climbing trees as a child but then I remember vividly Hey Joe whacking me in the face. I’d never heard anything like it. I got obsessed and listened to everything by him. It showed me how powerful music could be. It transported me and the pictures he painted in my mind were the most colourful images I had ever seen. Thanks Jimi!’ [RD]

4. Yes

“I love 70’s Yes in particular – albums like Close to the Edge and Tales from Topographic Oceans. Always been drawn to the guitar sounds and the vocal arrangements.” [RB]

YesSongs #5: YES - Close To The Edge

5. Frank Zappa

“In particularl it was Vinnie Colaiuta’s drumming that grabbed me with this record [Joe’s Garage (acts 1/2/3)]. When I first started drumming I was really into exploring the technical side, so seeing that you could play a track in 21/16 and make it feel really good and musical was an exciting thing.” [MT]

The Joy Formidable are currently on tour in UK, catch them at the following dates:

19 – London, Oval Space

21 – The Great Escape Festival

22 – Oxford, O2 Academy

23 – High Wymcombe, Bucks Student Union

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