I have previously featured the music of Scott Lloyd here on the blog (see post Introducing Scott Lloyd) as his old school acoustic sound is a big hit with me. He has a great story telling ability within his songs that never fails to capture my attention. I also like how he never stands still when it comes to his music as he always wants to learn and create new sounds. He always releases music of a high calibre and depth which can be heard on his latest release ‘Ironopolis’. Scott was kind enough to talk to me about his EP and answer the questions that I had.
What were your goals when working on Ironopolis?
I guess it was a case of me having these new songs and wanting to get them out there for everyone to hear and enjoy. I always want to keep moving and progressing with every EP I release and I know this is my best yet. There are six songs and I’ve put my heart and soul into each and every one of them. The title track, Ironopolis, is about my hometown of Middlesbrough. I have wanted to write a song about Middlesbrough for a long time and its only now I’ve been able to put something together. It’s taken so long because I’m pretty strict with myself about deciding whether a song is good enough to complete. I rarely finish writing a song if I don’t think it’s going to be very good. I see it as a massive waste of time, and for some reason I struggle to ‘tweak’ songs to make them better. It’s always a very quick and natural process and it’s this reason why Ironopolis took so long. I literally couldn’t work on and finish anything I thought wasn’t good enough. So, now I’ve got it finished and out there, I feel proud and I know I’ve put my all into it.
During the process of putting this album together, what were the highs and lows?
After I released my previous EP Give Me Something last year, I worked on the full band side of things for a long time, and it seemed as though there would be no going back to the acoustic, singer/song writer part of my music. I questioned which direction I was going to go in with my music for a bit. Over the early and mid part of 2015 I had an absolutely scorching bout of writers block, and I suffered from it. When I get writers block I feel like nothing I write is any good and nothing flows. As I said before, my song writing style is super natural and when it’s not coming easy I can’t force it. There are no black and white rules or methods to doing it and it can be crippling when nothing you do is working for a long period of time. So, to get out of the creative rut I was in, I tried going as simple as possible and I wrote very bread and butter folk songs. Four chords, simple strumming, sweet lyrics, I just took it down to the bare minimum, and it worked! Over the period of a few months, it all progressed and I had written all the songs for the new EP and that was it. Sorted. I recorded the EP myself at home and played and sang all the parts, as well as mixing and producing it. That took some time, but it meant I had it exactly as I wanted it. This EP is a very personal piece from me, and the response so far has been incredible. Sometimes going back to the roots of your passion or craft is the way to progress further, you are left with what you loved doing in the first place, and it’s refreshing. I recommend everyone tries it out.
How did it feel when you heard the final cut of the EP?
I was so hyped about it. Because I did it all myself, I was aware how it was sounding from the beginning and I literally moulded it to how I wanted it to sound. I’m very proud of it, I hope everyone enjoys it as much as I enjoyed making it.
What is your favourite song from this release and why?
I like them all, but the stand out ones for me are Keep Moving, Open Mic Night, Ironopolis and Home. The others are just as good but I really enjoy playing these ones. Ironopolis is a mix of my memories of being young in Middlesbrough and a little bit of a story about where the town has come from and where it is at now. With the closing of Redcar steel recently it seemed as though the town needed something to pick it up. I released the song straight away on YouTube and dedicated it to those who had lost their jobs. My hometown is really important to me and I’m willing to put Middlesbrough on the map again. Track three, Open Mic Night, seems to be a popular one as well. I released that separately on iTunes as a single. It is the first song of mine that I’ve done this with, so it is technically my debut single, about time as well. The song is a story about meeting someone on the live music circuit in Manchester and them having an interesting effect on the audience and the way they go about things is somewhat, animated or ‘Gallagher-esque’ if you get me. I’m not saying who or what it’s about in particular though, I don’t want to spoil the fun at the moment. I had the first 90% of it completed a while ago, and it took me a bit of time to get it finished so I was happy with it. Now, I’m happy with it.
Now the EP is released, what are your future goals for your music?
I know this is my calling and this is what I’m going to do forever. One way or another I’m hoping to be writing and releasing my songs for a long time in my life. More specifically, I’m going to experiment with different arrangements, band or no band, and work on what I can musically as often as possible. I want to release EPs/albums every year and tour the country and hopefully Europe. Next summer I will be playing plenty of festivals and enjoying it all the way. I love the whole DIY, indie ethos so I am happy to keep doing it that way. I am full control of all aspects of my music, and that’s exactly how I want it to be. This isn’t something ‘I’m having a go at’; it’s something I am going to do.
‘Ironopolis’ is more than your usual music release as this feels personal which you can understand by the way Scott talked about it. His previous EP’s have always had an amazing depth their lyrics but this is definitely something special. I probably connect more to this EP as I live in the same corner of the world and understand what he is saying about his hometown. My favourite song ‘Home’ is a wonderful example of this. When he shares his tale within the song, delivered with an impressive gentle tone and control, I totally understand where he is coming from.
The rest of the EP is filled with so many songs that will put this singer songwriter in the spotlight for so many good reasons. There is no frills on this EP as it’s core is built around the honest sound shared by Scott, his guitar and harmonica. This sound feels so natural, and for me, is how music should be created. When I talk about the music of Scott Lloyd it is so difficult not to talk about his gift with words and how he uses them to share them with his amazing story telling quality. For me, ‘Ironopolis’ is an EP of 2 halves as the first three songs have a fun and at times a humorous feel to them. The second half has more of a personal depth to them and for me is when his music really shines. Overall, this EP demonstrates that Scott is a serious wordsmith which is used to add so much to his songs.
I have already mentioned that ‘Home’ is my favourite song by far because of the way I can connect to its meaning. My other highlights are ‘Let Me be Me, And you be You’ which again shows a softer side to his sound including a delicate tone while ‘Open Mic Night’ makes me smile with its humorous tale about a local frontman.
‘Ironopolis’ is the fourth release by Scott Lloyd and it is his strongest collection of songs to date even though his previous offerings are of a high standard. If you want your music with an honest natural acoustic sound with a lyrical depth that will impress then the music by Scott Lloyd is for you. If you want to check out Ironopolis in full or any of his other Eps then you can hear them at his Soundcloud page (click HERE). If you like what you here and want to buy the CDs then grab them from his store (click HERE) or you can get the digital versions from ITunes or Amazon.
I have spoken to Scott on many occasions and I always admire the way he talks about his music. As you have read during his interview, he has a strong conviction to ensure that he never stops creating music. For me, this feels like a trait that you would expect from the greats of the singer songwriter world. I look forward to hearing what he creates next and I am confident that when it is released you will read all about it here. If you can not wait until then and want to know more about this talented musician then head over to his website at ScottLloydMusic.co.uk. You can also check him out at his social media sites at Facebook or Twitter which is a great place to find out about his upcoming shows.
Musicians like Scott Lloyd can only continue to do what they do with the help of their fans. It is our duty to purchase the music, going to gigs and help spread the word about the music that matters to us. So if you like the music by Scott Lloyd then tell the world all about him today!