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Band Of The Week // NIGHT RIOTS

The newest album from Night Riots is a glitzy ride of synths and pop sensibilities to take you on a journey through the highs and lows of life. Quite literally too, as the band shares how they got high on helium.

Night Riots 2019

Los Angeles-based quintet Night Riots already proved themselves to be masters of crafting catchy anthems with their past discography, but their newest album New State Of Mind really hammers this message home with a slew of glistening tracks that could easily get stuck in your head. From the upbeat opener Tokyo Diamond Eyes that instantly brings the summer vibes with its bright vocals and sunshine-laden melody, to the more pensive Talk About It that slows down for some reflection, it’s an album that trawls through the highs and lows and doesn’t shy away from the darkness that infringes upon us.

Bringing in some 80s vibes with the electronic heavy Leave Us Alone, there’s an underlying sense of fiery independence as vocalist Travis Hawley sings ‘leave us alone, we’re not the problem’ over thumping synths. However, it’s not trails blazing ahead for the whole album, and a vulnerability peeks through in On The Line in the words ‘i must confess I am a mess at my best’ despite what the rhythmic sextuplets in the chorus may suggest. With such a contrast to be found in this body of work, it’s likely you’ll find yourself continuously returning to the album for the different points of your life.

We got in touch with the band to find out more about how they got high on helium for the album, and the importance of music to them.

What’s a motto you live by?

“Don’t look down on a man unless you’re willing to pick him up.”

If your sound had a colour, what colour would it be?

A mixture of vantablack and sun yellow.

If you could set New State Of Mind to a movie, which movie would it be the soundtrack to?

True Romance by Tony Scott.

Can you explain the album art a bit more?

The album art is a mixture of colorful imagery, surrealism and darkness that we feel really fits the vibe of the album.

Are there any behind the scenes stories of the recording process that you can share with us?

In the song Tokyo Diamond Eyes we wanted to get some female singers to hit some really high notes in the chorus’ stacked gang vocals but we ran out of time. We ended up just getting a bunch of helium balloons and basically getting high on helium to hit the extra high notes in there.

And finally, what does music mean to you?

It’s an outlet, a reflection of life. It’s meaningless and necessary all at the same time.