Sugar Jesus? Perhaps the next big thing according to several outstanding reviews. It is quite amazing that a band with comments such as “Indie Disco Kings” and “The forerunners of Synth Pop’s thriving underground!” from reputable names such as TimeOut and ArtRocker aren’t already causing mass audio induced euphoria during the daily commute. They are my dirty little secret that I and their loyal listeners can turn to in times when we just need to escape for a wonderful 3:30s (approx).

Ahem, in all seriousness and music review jargon aside, Sugar Jesus really could be one of the next big things to take up residence in that place which brings “silent” humming and foot tapping to our lives. Sugar Jesus has a good blend of “mainstream factors” which apply the easy listening required for instantly likeable music, whilst maintaining a feeling that I can only describe as an unique. You really have to listen to it to understand, but if you do in the future, or perhaps you already have, you will definitely understand the emotion that I am doing my utmost best to describe. They are a band which definitely have something at their heart, and that something…is Damn Good!

I have followed Sugar Jesus since seeing them live for the first time a few years back at Dingwalls when their name was “AphelionLive” which then became “Dance Like Me” and finally settled on “Sugar Jesus”. They’ve been through their name changes but what makes them good, certainly hasn’t changed. The thing which got me hooked on Sugar Jesus is their live performance. All their reviews tend to culminate on this one factor, They truly are a spectacle to see live!

“A knockout adrenaline fuelled live set, bursting with energy!” — The Fly

The energy you tentatively hope for when going to a live gig nowadays is completely smashed when Sugar Jesus takes to the stage setting a whole new bar in dancing fuelled energy euphoria. You really cant ask more from the band members, who not only give their all, but are incredibly friendly and down to earth, regularly mingling and enjoying the company of their fans after their performance. I feel obliged to add here for those less inclined to go the live performances, when going to see Sugar Jesus, you are always in good company.

“I have never been to a gig with so many like-minded, friendly people who all just want to go out and have a really good time!”

Recently I spoke to Andrei the main man and asked if we could have a chat about the band, its future, and possibly most importantly, the man himself. He kindly obliged and here are some excerpts from what I can say was an whole day well spent kicking around several coffee houses in Notting Hill.

Interview Participants:

Andrei

Jeremy Hindle

Amelia Darell

Interview:

“Shall we get started then?”
(Drinks arrive at the table for both of us.)
“Wow it’s massive – I want to keep it looking pretty”
“Ha-ha that’s great, ready now?”
“This is delicious!”
“Andrei, can we start?”
“…Right quiz me!”
“Ok, well let’s start with something standard to get things rolling… When was the first time you even considered making music the way you do now?”
“Wow, well I started to write music when I was 11, that was just on the piano and I actually arrived to pop music quite late on. I was very much classically trained when I was younger. I used to write stuff back then but it wasn’t anything like what I do now. It is certainly a passion which has grown from when I was very young though.”
“So how long has Sugar Jesus been together for?”
“On and off with different members for about 3 years, it’s been going for quite a long time actually, from the end of school through University.”
(Amelia Darell arrives and the interview resumes after brief introductions.)
“…Nice to meet you Andrei!”
“You too!”
“Ok let’s get right into this, so do you do all the writing for Sugar Jesus? Do you write the music and the lyrics?”
“Yes, I do everything but I do co-writes and collaborations as well. It’s what sort of drives me most with the whole thing, the writing, it’s a bit sad really, you know the geeky boy in his room writing away on his laptop, but yeah I really enjoy writing. We aren’t really the most traditional band, we don’t jam in garages and things like that.”
“So what inspires your lyrics?”
“Uuuuuh well… all sorts of things really.”
“Well how do you make up the lyrics, how do you put them together, what’s the process for you?
“Um, well like I said all sorts of things. I write a lot about…the weather…um, well a lot of people write about relationships and there are a lot of heavy breakup songs. I haven’t really had a harsh, well you know, a hard breakup like that. If that time comes then I suppose I’ll be able to write stuff about it. If it does happen at least I’ll get a bloody good pop song out of it!”
“So you feel you need to have experienced the things you are talking about?”
“Yes, exactly, I’ve been in a stable relationship for quite a while now so I can’t sing about my ‘heart being trodden on’ and all that. Some people tend to write songs when they are down, or when they are angry about life, but the thing is, I’m not so I have to look in other areas. I CAN’T just leave it as being just the weather, that’s a bit sad…Haha…no I like writing sort of weird twisted love songs, argh that’s even worse haha…”
“Don’t worry you can keep your sources of inspiration a secret haha! You’re pretty specific about your content what with having had to experience it etcetera, so do you not like vague lyrics as well?”
“Actually, when I listen to a song I often don’t really listen to the lyrics. I mean I know they are there but often it isn’t really until they are pointed out to me that I will notice them at all. The problem with a lot of lyrics is that although they are all well and good, a person’s individual attachment to a song can be completely changed by lyrics. The whole songs meaning to someone can be altered. This being the case I like lyrics which are vague and vacuous so that any person can interpret and develop personal feelings about a song on their own. I feel that a song can mean a lot more to someone if they hear it their way, rather than be told by someone else exactly what it means. So in a sense I like to write lyrics which can mean many different things.”
“Cool, are their any particular bands which inspire you or you like?”
“Well yeah, of course, I love the 1980’s, it’s where I’m from after all…Gary Numan, Soft Cell, Human League, and nowadays, well I love most things, I really love The Killers, and Underworld a 90’s dance band are probably my favourites. I mean I listen to everything and I like everything.”
“What about… dare I say it, metal?”
“Well actually I had a German exchange once in Berlin and he was very into his death metal. So anyway this guy and I went together to a death metal festival and I remember a band called Cannibal Corpse, who I think are quite famous now. They had a song called ‘Hammer Smashed Face’ which they ended their set on… and yeah, that was a good tune! I also remember that I wasn’t aware of the dress code for these things being there in a white t-shirt. You know, everyone was there in black leathers with long hair and I was a geeky skinny white kid in a white t-shirt so yeah, I remember the propellerhead thing they do with their hair, you could do it actually (inferring Amelia).”
“Yeah haha I suppose I could! So how do you feel about the band and the stage it is at at the moment?”
“Well yeah it’s quite scary for me at the moment actually. A lot of my friends are getting jobs and salaries and I really want to just carry on writing songs for a living.”
“Well you still get paid.”
“Yeah, that’s true but you’re never really on a salary, you might make a million pounds overnight, or you might make nothing for ten years you know. It’s scary but it’s definitely something I want to do…I’m still young so I’m going to give it a go!”
“What do you think of the X-Factor or Pop Idol route?”
“Well, I don’t think our type of music really suits either of those competitions. There’s no doubt that it’s entertaining but I don’t think there is better music in the media because of it.”
“Were there any difficulties with keeping the band going through university… Did noise levels ever make it hard to find house-mates?”
“No not at all…actually…at my flat we had a room to rent out and these two lesbians came to look at it. They were so pretty, not like one man, one woman thing which often happens, they were both stunning. It was like ‘If Carlsberg did room-mates, they’d probably be the best in the world!!’ kind of thing! I think I freaked them out a bit though, I remember being all like ‘Oh yes oh yes come in come in…’ and I’m the hairy man… which is EXACTLY what they don’t like you know…’men…disgusting eurgh’ Haha.”
“Haha, yes you are the exact image of manliness aren’t you Andrei! Haha”
“Well yes you know I just have to live with it I suppose (Sarcasm)…Is this going to be in the interview?”
“Yup!”
“Right haha! Ok, next… what have you got for me Amelia? Haha!”
“Mmmm something weird…fine ok how long will you carry on doing this if you never fully take off?”
“Oh come on… Don’t ask that, that’s miserable Haha! Were not talking about if you’d pull the plug on a coma patient here. I don’t think I’ll ever give this line of work up, it’s what I love doing and I want to do it forever.”
“Ok, how about this, if you become famous what will you enjoy the most about it? The money? The girls? You know…?”
“Well you know (laughing) that’s all great and that but what really drives me isn’t any of that, what drives me is to write a song that a million people can all connect with. That’s what gets me going! I believe that if I write something good enough and people like it, then it will just sell itself. If I could write something that could have people anywhere in the world, any race, any nationality, dancing and enjoying something I wrote together…That would be what I want the most. Don’t get me wrong women are great and that, I’m not going to put that down, freebies and things…like microwaves, they’re awesome! Really though, in all seriousness, in the end its all about the music.”
“Ok, alright change of tack, what festivals do you want to play at the most in the future?”
“Ok well we’ve played a few already, we haven’t played Glastonbury yet, I’d love to play there, it would be amazing.”
“Would that be the place you want to play the most?”
“What about Beach Break Live, that’s my favourite festival?”
“Well yeah I’d love to play at Beach Break Live, I’ve only heard great things about it from both festival goers and band members alike, although I’m not really much of a surfer Haha!
“Well I seriously reckon you should do that, you’d go down really well there!”
“Yeah I guess we should go for that. There’s also of course Brixton Acadamy. I really don’t think there is anywhere cooler than that in London. I still remember my first ever gig I went to was Faithless there years ago, I needed my fake I.D to get in and yeah, it’s still one of the best gigs I’ve been to.”
“So I watched your music video, and loved it I might add, but why did you decide to be in the space suit?”
“The concept of the video was not actually our idea. It was the guy who directed it Andrew Nicholas from Frarl.com? We went along with it and I think it was alright, yeah I’m really happy with it. I think the idea with ‘Solarize’ was meant to be the euphoria etcetera and there is a love song in there as well and yeah. We came down from Manchester to play a gig for our label for a showcase kind of thing in Shoreditch and we had the afternoon to do it. I had a friend in London who plays the robot, my friend Nick West and he went out with the Director and filmed all those shots on Hampstead Heath. Then we did the pick up shots that evening with Ashleigh’s sexy cousin. Actually it was one of the hardest things that. When you are trying to make a really low budget music video and you are trying to find a sexy lady to be in…it was great to be like ‘Ashleigh you find one.’ It was difficult because you know, you might ring up a friend who you haven’t spoken to for a couple of years and go ‘You’re sexy, mind if I film you?’ It’s all a bit creepy really. You can’t really do that, it’s not acceptable nowadays. So yeah other than that, they filmed the gig and we did at the end and so it was literally one day! Oh yeah! (Andrei finally answers the question!) The astronaut helmet, we filmed that around Kings Cross.”

“Was it really cool seeing the final video when it was completed?”
“Yes! It really was! It was about a month later we saw it and it was just weird, so weird. I mean we had been filmed lots before when playing live and such but the music video was very different. Felt really strange watching it back. Amazing, but strange.”
“If you did music videos in the future would they be ones with loads of backing dancers or the type with just one person in it?”
“Yeah! Good question, I’d love to have backing dancers! Some of those sexy Ministry of Sound dancers. If I can get their phone numbers then yeah, I would love to be one of those guys. Oh gosh like that music video ‘Duh duh duh duh duh…’ (Mimics the moves and sounds from Alex Gaudino ‘s Destination Calabria) That video was just ridiculous” They’re just taking the mickey really aren’t they, I mean I remember that other one with all the office girls who are just getting ready for the weekend and they all start stripping whilst filing, OH!…. and the photocopier! (Michal Gray’s – The Weekend). Haha totally amazing! It’s ridiculous!”
“Yeah that ‘Weekend’ video was truly amazing!”
“Make sure to put that bit in, doing that can be another one of my dreams! Haha and if I can be in it, all the better you know. I bet they’ll get some male model, stunt double to do it though. Maybe I can buff up by then or something. Maybe get me on the Jeremy Hindle diet”
“Yeah, well maybe, I’ll whip you into shape in no time Andrei!”
“Yeah, well I think those are the best kind of videos. I mean you always get those artsy videos making the top 100 with all their weird imagery… but NO! It’s all about the ones with the women, the naked ladies on the photocopiers! One’s like that….Man I sound like such a bastard! (Laughter) Actually we are shooting another video for one of the songs on our EP called ‘Man on Fire’. It’s one we are actually doing ourself this time. I thought it would be quite cool, so I borrowed a friends camera and all that and so we set off to do it. ‘Man on Fire’ is about body image and weight and all that stuff yadda yadda yadda. You know drugs and eating disorders and things like that. It’s not done in an emo way though, it’s a happy song…I swear!”
“A happy song?” (Sceptical)
“Well, uh yeah, it’s also a love song. There’s actually this line at the end which goes ‘I need your body, ‘cos I have wasted my own’ and what we did there was…actually you can see it yourselves. It’s out in a couple of weeks. There are burning Barbie dolls involved… yeah it is creepy but it’ll make sense if you give it a watch when it comes out. It was meant to be a bit about burning the tools of your childhood and things like that. I was actually much more into Ninja Turtles.”
“Yep me too, they were awesome!”
“Yeah I know! They were turtles, who ate pizza. How cool are they! Who thought of something so awesome? What about you Amelia did you play with Barbies? I mean there is certainly a resemblance going on there Haha!”
“What kind of stuff did you play with when you were younger Andrei?”
“Well like I said I remember Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles a lot, uuum, I quite liked Tom and Jerry which is just a bit of a classic. Mmmmm…! Oh yeah Captain Planet… ‘He gets pollution down to zero!’ He was pretty cool actually, I mean we were always told by our parents and even more now, and yeah Captain Planet was ahead of the the game really affirming that message all that time ago on the television.”
“Do you remember all the rings? Each of the Planeteers had their own ring, wind, water, fire, earth, and heart. Which do you reckon Sugar Jesus best represents? Haha!”
“Uuuum…ok.. so there was water, fire, earth, wind and….”
“Heart.”
“Haha…Ok well ok how about wind… NO wait! Wind sounds bad! Um…yeah fire. Yeah we’ll be fire.”
“So why fire?”
“Why fire…. well fire grows….NO wait it spreads, not grows, yeah spreads….don’t put that in…and it’s hot…like the band……and IT TAKES LIVES! No… wait……we can be a cleansing flame to the stagnant Simon Cowell spoon fed media driven generation. How’s that?”
“So you want me to put down that your band takes lives?”
“No no, don’t put that, put the second one, the second one!”
“It’s going in.”
“Haha ok..”
“Anyway more seriously, you are kind enough to give a freebie to the readers of this article?”
“Ok well it’s a new track called Criminal, it’s the first of these twisted love songs that I’ve mentioned. It’s a collab with this guy from New Jersey, ‘Epic Da Rapper’ is his name. I think he’s 17 and I think he’s really good, I mean he’s really good! I sent a track to him, he said he loved it, he sent it back to me in about 2-3 hours all recorded, done! We didn’t really even speak during the whole thing, all emails and things. I remember my ones would all be like ‘Dear balah blah blah, I hope you are well etc etc’, very polite, very English, very Andrei and he replied with “Ok….sent from my Blackberry”. So we have a very professional relationship Haha! There was one embarrassing thing actually…my first few contacts to him were addressed to ‘ERIC the rapper’ (rather than Epic) which eventually I got a succinct correction on… ‘It’s Epic….sent from my Blackberry’ Haha! Anyway the track is called “Criminal”, it’s got a dancey dirty analogue synthy hook to it. It’s a twisted love song with a chorus line ‘I want to break into you.’ When we wrote that line I thought that’s great, it’s really hooky, but I don’t think any man could get away with signing it. However we’ve got Ashleigh, who’s a girl, which in my head at least makes it more acceptable. Ultimately it’s a commercial dance tune made to get you groovin’. So ‘Criminal feat. Epic da Rapper’ give it a listen!”
“You mentioned a new track?”
“Yeah, we are doing a new one! It’s along the lines of Dizzee Rascal – Bonkers its a really driven filthy UK electro track. It’s called ‘Electric Shock and well… it’s going to be HUUUGE….hopefully…that’s the idea…etc etc.”
“I like the name! I want to hear it.”
“Soon.”
“So going back to Epic and in general, do you do collaborations often, do you plan to?”
“Well yes I’m always open to collaborating, I love working with new singers, new rappers, new writers, other musicians really. I think it’s great today that you can literally almost email a track to someone and they can send it straight back with their vocals or whatever input they have. It’s nice being able to having that something new which others can bring to the table whilst still maintaining what makes Sugar Jesus Sugar Jesus, something I think we do well.”
“When I listen to your music, I honestly feel that something which is left in gives an interesting lifting feeling, it’s certainly something which makes one feel lighter.”
“Well, thanks! I think for me, what I want well I think it’s best described by a feeling, you know when you are walking somewhere, anywhere, with your headphones on, you don’t have to talk to anyone, then is when music can act as pure escapism. It lifts you upwards and outwards, allowing you to live 100% in the moment. A sort of euphoria, a feeling of absolute confidence in oneself.”
“Looks like we’ve run out of time…”
“Yeah, I was just going to say I need to shoot off now.”
“Well, thank you very much for your time, and giving us an exclusive download to offer our readers, your recent track – Criminal feat. “Epic da Rapper”
“Yes, thanks a lot!”
No problemo, hopefully see you both at my next gig! Keep an eye on our myspace!

Sugar Jesus from the Net and Press – As Well as their Exclusive Free Download to Members of This Site!!!:

Myspace

Youtube

Facebook Group

SoundCloud

Sugar Jesus Official Website (Under Construction)

Sugar Jesus – Music Videos for “Solarize” and “Man On Fire”

Recent Comments on Sugar Jesus’s Debut Music Video “Solarize” which was entered into the “Pepsi Max It Legends Music Competition”:

Pepsi Max were so taken with the Sugar Jesus video for Solarize, the title track of their recently released debut EP, that they have included it in their show reel to highlight the very best entries into the Pepsi Max (Max it Legend’s – Music Highlights Round Two) Music Video competition. Solarize was shot in and around London including footage from one of the bands live gigs. Sugar Jesus have consistently earned rave reviews for their live performances and some of that is captured in this video. The external shots were primarily shot on Hampstead Heath. The video was directed by Andrew Nicholas.

What Andrei said about this video in the interview:

“We are shooting another video for one of the songs on our EP called ‘Man on Fire’. It’s one we are actually doing ourself this time. I thought it would be quite cool, so I borrowed a friends camera and all that and so we set off to do it. ‘Man on Fire’ is about body image and weight and all that stuff yadda yadda yadda. You know drugs and eating disorders and things like that. It’s not done in an emo way though, it’s a happy song…I swear!”

Exclusive Free Download of Criminal Ft. Epic Da Rapper

Below is a (kindly offered) exclusive free download to the track “Criminal” featuring Epic Da Rapper.  To download please sign up to this site and then the download link below here will activate.  It is very easy, you can even use your Facebook details so you don’t have to remember any more passwords! Sign Up Here.

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Sugar Jesus in The News

SUGAR JESUS’ “DEBUT EP” is **OUT NOW**

iTunes

Amazon

There is also a limited run of physical copies available. If you would like a CD, please email: info@sugarjesus.com

  • “Sugar Jesus, London’s hugely tipped “Indie Disco Kings” (TimeOut) have today released their debut EP.”
  • “The untitled EP comprises four tracks and is now available on iTunes and on limited physical release.”
  • “The award-winning electro pop act will follow up with a debut album, due to be released early next year.”
  • “The release of their EP comes after a frantic year of touring their live show alongside such acts as Calvin Harris, Data Rock, The Whip and Filthy Dukes.”
  • “The group won “Best Dance Song” for their opener ‘Here Comes the Storm’ at the 2009 EMAs, where they also received a nomination for “Best Live Act”.”
  • “Hailed as “The forerunners of Synth Pop’s thriving underground” by ArtRocker and labelled “Dance Floor Dynamite” by New York’s Z100″
  • “They have recently received widespread radio-play, and the music video for their euphoric track ‘Solarize’ has been brewing a storm on YouTube and Vimeo.”
  • “They are the band that everyone seems to be talking about, and it is little wonder that there has been great interest in the build up to this release.”