Artist Spotlight – Bigblast

Bigblast are a punk band from Lyon, France. Their most recent album, All Saviours, is an explosion of hardcore sensibilities and melodic gems, no doubt greatly aided by vocalist Emi’s fantastic vocals. From opening track ‘Something To Sing About’, their intentions are clear – to take the rock scene by storm, promoting humanist ethics and having a bloody good time along the way.

“For me, all kind of arts can deliver a message, politically or not. I think it’s easier to share strong statements through punk rock than dance or pop, though,” says Greg, the band’s bassist. Seb, who plays guitar, backs that up – “I think punk rock is a kind of music that offers us the possibility to speak out loud about everything. Not all bands are taking this chance, but strong messages are important for us.” All throughout All Saviours, there’s a true sense of hope, that Bigblast are just aiming to make the world a slightly better place, and they’ve put their faith in punk. Liom, on screams/guitar, points out the power of punk – “Since I was 14 years old, punk bands that I’ve listened to have opened my eyes on a lot of issues that I didn’t even know about, and made me realise how the world works. It’s a very good way to share opinions and bring awareness!” The band aren’t afraid to reach out either – “We write our songs in English for 3 reasons,” say Emi and Liom. “It sounds better (to us), we can touch more people and the message is more powerful!”

Of course, Bigblast have far more influences than just punk, as is evident from their songwriting. Citing influences like Deftones, Linkin Park and VersaEmerge, as well as some slightly more predictable ones like A Wilhelm Scream, Rise Against, The Flatliners and Mute, Bigblast have managed to craft a unique and compelling sound. This sound hasn’t been found that easily though. When quizzed on the formation of the current lineup, Liom adds “Like a lot of bands we started as friends making music and playing a few gigs. Some of us wanted to go further, some didn’t. That’s why there were a few line up changes before the current formation.” And though their sound has “evolved” since Emi and Greg joined the current lineup, the band are quick to stress that they’ve always been diverse in their sound – “It’s always hard to put a label on your music. Some people think that we are very poppy and that we’re easy listening thanks to Emi’s voice. Others think we are hardcore punk because of our lyrics, screams and also because we play fast,” says Liom. “But I think we’ve always been melodic.”

Here at TwoBeatsOff, we’re always keen to scope out new and awesome music from around the world and our knowledge of the French punk scene is reasonably shocking. So we asked Bigblast whether they knew any good bands. Liom was eager to offer forth some suggestions – “There are a lot of good bands in our town, but no one is close to our style. That said, you should check out these bands, you won’t regret it: The Traders, The Amsterdam Red Light District, uncommenmenfrommars and Burning Heads.” But has that scene helped them along the way? “It’s always the same story. The scene trusts you only when you are about to reach your goals. For the past year and a half, we’ve worked our asses off and we’ve done lots of things (album, tours, opening for famous bands) and people want to be a part of that success,” says Liom. “But Every new fan is a special one for us and we always remember the ones that were there when we were nothing. Being supported feels good, man!”

Bigblast care about their fans a lot, and are always finding ways to get them involved. As such, touring is a big deal for them, and they put their heart and souls into their live shows. We asked what you might expect from a Bigblast show – “Lots of energy between the band and the audience,” says Emi, and Seb agrees – “Loud music, and as Emi said, energy!”. Liom adds “If you’re coming to one of our shows, you’ll see a band having fun on stage and enjoying every minute of it. Our aim is to share this feeling of happiness we all have when we are on stage.”

With such an exuberant stage presence, it’s not hard to believe that Bigblast know how to have a good time and they’ve got plenty of tour stories from their latest European tour. “The European tour had a lot of good moments; meeting new people every night is very exciting. I think music is a really good way to link people because it’s a passion and you’re living these strong moments together. One of my favorite moments on this tour was in Liberec in the Czech Republic, we played with a kick ass band called Burning Steps and partied like crazy ‘till 6 in the morning. Come on, one Euro a pint, we had to honour this local beer!” says Emi. “For me it was a real discovery,” says Greg. “We’ve met super cool people, we’ve done lots of kilometres and partied with a lot of new friends and fans. I personally enjoyed discovering new foods and drinks. Trust me, I’ll remember this fucking spicy soup we got in Liberec! I also keep a sweet memory of this after party in Livraga, Italy, where I discovered sambuca and chinar, two local spirits.” Liom enjoyed himself a lot too. “The tour was pure awesomeness! The crowd welcomed us warmly, we’ve shared our music, and discovered countries we’ve never seen before. I remember this morning waking up in the van after a snowy night, everything was white and beautiful. It was a totally unbelievable and unexpected view for a band on tour.”

With the release of All Saviours and numerous tours, it’s been one hell of a busy year for Bigblast and it’s set to get even busier. “This year, we’ve released an album, we’ve done two tours and another one is gonna be added at the list in October,” says Emi. “We are proud of what we’ve achieved in a year and we definitely have reached our first goals! Now we’ve set up new ones – to reach larger audiences and tour in an other continent are some of them.” Seb’s got some other ideas too – “Touring is definitely what we are made for! A new album can be a good project for the future …” And Liom’s already thinking ahead to next year – “The Eastern European tour in late October is our priority for the moment, but we are already planning some exciting stuff for next spring. Those plans can involve taking a plane…”

Bigblast are Emi, Liom, Greg, Seb and Jérome. All Saviours was released in January on Craze Records, Bad Mood Records, Maximise Records, Sirkel Pit Records and Culture Punk Records. You can check them out on Bandcamp.

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