When asked to describe their fuzzy pop-rock sound to us, London / Brighton-based Beach Riot summarise it as “loud, hooky and sweaty,” which sounded pretty damn good to us.
The quartet of Rory O’Connor (guitars, vocals and songwriter), Cami Menditeguy (guitar and vocals), Jim Faulkner (bass and vocals) and Jonny Ross (drums) formed in February and only played their first show in April, but are already making huge waves – including supporting DZ Deathrays later this month.
We had a chat with Rory to find out more, and started with their exciting fuzzy sound. He explained: “FUZZ POP! Basically music people can go nuts to at a show but hopefully still have something stuck in their head afterwards.”
And in terms of what influences their music, Rory tells us: “I’m not gonna lie, lyrics ain’t my strong point! I’m more interested in great melodies, and words that sound right to fit a melody. I guess there’s often stuff about relationships, usual shit… one of our new tunes is about a serial killer after I watched a documentary about one. I don’t really like to labour on a tune too long, my best always just falls out of me really quickly. It’s more like a weird urge and frustration stuck inside like a puzzle, and I have to sit down and get it out as quick as possible.”
Latest single Slackers opens with a big ear-tingling noise then a burst of catchy fuzzy guitar that leads into a verse with clean guitar chords then more fuzzy guitar through the chorus, with Cami’s vocals lingering deliciously in the background. The second chorus is followed by a roaming guitar solo with fuzzy chords in support. Trust us when we say you’ll struggle not to bang your head along in enjoyment to this track. Check it out for yourself in the video below:
Previous single B.A.D showcases a slightly heavier, fuzzier element to Beach Riot. The guitars are delicious, and the driving drums and bursts of squeaky drive the track along superbly.
As Rory tells us: “We’re gigging a lot, people keep throwing them our way which is ace. We’ve just nailed a support for DZ Deathrays end of September which we can’t wait for. We’ve just recorded two more which we’ll be releasing on Killing Moon pretty soon, then more gigs to end the year!”
Beach Riot have one particular band in mind as a key influencer, as Rory explains: “Definitely a band called Cable from the 90s. Alternative / indie kinda vibe. GO LISTEN, they are so fucking good. Then of course Nirvana and Queens of the Stone Age. I can’t hide from that. A good chunk of Pavement in there too. Currently we’re loving Calva Louise and Demob Happy.
As Rory alluded to, the true appeal of Beach Riot is their live performances. He explained: “Basically we wanna be that band that people HAVE to see live. That’s what we love. Come lose your shit to us at a show then lose your shit to us in your living room. It’s all mega DIY up till now and I think that comes through. Also we are nice people, I hate rockstar twats.”
Beach Riot have an alluring fuzzy sound that’s hard not to enjoy, there’s elements of Nirvana like grunginess fused with more poppy catchiness which, when fused together, makes for a winning formula.