Tuesday, 17 June 2014

INTERVIEW: Pyrah


Pyrah are a 4-piece progressive metal band from France who were formed in 2012 and released their debut album Who am I? in March 2014.  Femetalism recently had a chat with the band about the band, their new album and their hopes for the future.

Can you tell us about Pyrah?  How did the band come together?  How would you describe the bands sound?

We met as Lucy (drums) and Stéphanie (vocals) were looking to form a new band together after playing together in another project. They found Olivier (bass guitar) who wanted to experience Metal as a new way of expression. Jean-Loup (guitar) was also trying to start a band. It was just good timing!
Describing the band sound it no easy task, especially since we've been confronted with it for some time already. For sure, it is dynamic. There are strong rhythms and a lot of accents, but also melodies that are quite present. Putting both together, we want them to be telling stories. The themes are not quite as dark or cutting, but it gives us more freedom to let their message be delivered.

You describe the vocals as sweet and sour.  Can you explain this more?

When we say "sweet and sour", we think about tones of voice and how they let a panel of feelings be expressed. Stéphanie often switches between clean voice and grunt/growl, which helps severing songs into different atmospheres. Moreover, lyrics also paint a world inside which cuteness and loathing are intertwined. This is just a way to express the huge contradictions that can coexist in a single being, as we all have both of these parts in ourselves.

Can you tell us something about each member of the band?

Well, Olivier plays the bass and has a lot of funk influences. He's the cool guy in the band and is the one bringing the extra groove. Stéphanie is of the artist archetype. She can try to plan ahead but always finds herself with new ideas at the most unlikely moment, usually the last one. Jean-Loup is the one composing the structure and melodies of the songs. He doesn't like rules and feels happy anytime something sounds right and wasn't done before. He's a kind of scientist constantly experimenting with music. Yes, sometimes it blows up. Lucie is a perfectionist and will spend days improving her play on any theme she thinks she can do better. And when it becomes easier, she works some more.

What inspired the band name Pyrah and what is its meaning?

This name was kind of a mix of a lot of thoughts we were having on the subject and we thought it sounded great. It has the darkness of the verb "pry" and also evocates a pyre. Adding the 'a' because we thought of a female "pyro" but we didn't want to emphasize this part too much. The priority being on the music, we didn't want to give a too big part to the people in the band versus the band's music.

You recently released your debut album - Where am I?  Can you tell us more about the album and the songs?

The composing part of "Where am I?" was one-year of work and a few more months to practice the last couple of songs. This is a great achievement for us that necessitated hard work, sweat and tears. Nevertheless, we can hear the changes we have made as a band by comparing the songs. Not in a good nor bad way. We can just hear the cohesion that we gained with the time and by learning to work together.

The songs depict several events in the life of a little girl that is considered special and therefore dangerous. This is not so-to-say a concept album but we tend toward that with connected themes and stories, even though some of them could have been anyone's thought.

What are your aspirations for the band?  What is next for Pyrah?

Clearly, this is what we all want to do with our lives. This is such a great joy to play live and share music. Next on the line, we have a couple of concerts planned. We are mostly searching for a label to be able to play more dates and maybe even festivals.

Also, we never stop composing new songs so we have been working on a few for some time now. We'd like to be able to offer more depth and subtlety on a next album in a way that would make the best of what we have.

Femetalism would like to thank Pyrah for taking the time to answer these questions and are looking forward to hearing more from this innovative band.  If you haven't already checked it out, we featured Where am I? recently in our Bandcamp Series. Have a read here.

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Originally posted by Emma Sheridan on Femetalism.