(PHOTO KEN HARRISON PHOTOGRAPHY)
NEW SINGLE - CALL YOUR GOD OUT NOW
Q&A With Paul Russell of
Q1. Hi Paul. Please introduce yourself.
Paul.. Hi, I'm Paul Russell, aged 44, and my real job is that of a Management Accountant. I'm married to Maria and we have two daughters, Abbie and Mollie, who appears on the cover of the "Silent Cries" EP.
Q2. You and Mel have been together since 1991, Why has 2013 become the year for you both to come forward with Eurasianeyes?
Paul.. Mel and I have been friends since 1991, and during that time we have messed around with synths as a hobby. We were never in a duo or other band together until Eurasianeyes.
We always spoke about releasing something but I think deep down we never really believed it. We had other things going on in our lives so never really took it seriously. In mid 2012 we latched onto the idea of you-tube and decided to upload music to that. It is on the back of the comments we received that we decided to take it further and release the EP and single.
Q3. Where did the name come from?
Paul.. The name was a quick decision. It doesn't have any significance to either of us personally. We had a few instrumental tracks that we wanted to upload to you-tube and being impatient I wanted to get everything done on the same night. We threw a few names around and Mel mentioned a track name from the movie "9 1/2 weeks" called Eurasian Eyes. The truth is that it was getting late and we were running out of time and couldn't think of anything else so we went with that as the name but made it into one word "Eurasianeyes".
Q4. You say Paul that Eurasianeyes have developed their own take of 'Classic Synth Music' How would you describe that sound?
Paul.. We look at the earlier classic synth tracks which have great riffs but may not have such a full sound overall. This is what we believe to be classic synth, but that's only our opinion.
We believe our sound uses all the typical synth sounds but we try to make them sound big and we try to write soaring melodies along with using deep bass arpeggio's. A lot of bands do this so it's not something we developed it's just the sound we like.
Basically we do whatever the track requires. In truth we are still trying to find our true sound.
Q5. I love the image by the way but behind that 'Mitchell Brothers look' I do believe you are both two quiet family orientated men. Is that a fair comment ;-)
Paul.. The "Mitchell Brothers" look, ha-ha! I love it :)
It's not an image we went out for but to be honest we had the photo's taken in February and it was a chilly day so we wore big coats. We do look like a couple of dodgy bouncers though :)
We are both family men. Mel has been married to Trish for 20 odd years and I've been married to Maria for 23 years and have two daughters and two pug dogs. I don't really have a Mitchell brother image when I'm out walking the pugs and especially when one of the pugs is called "Pookie"!!
Q6. It's great to see Geoff Pinckneys name on your CDs - How did you get Geoff on board?
Paul.. In December 2012 I was contacted by Living Ornaments Radio and asked to send them some of our music which they'd heard on you-tube and they thought it would work on their podcast. I sent in "Chaos In Your Mind" and they played it.
On the same show they were playing a track by Tenek. I heard their track and then I heard ours and I could tell we had a lot to learn when it came to mixing and mastering the tracks.
A couple of months later I contacted Peter Steer through Facebook and asked him how we could go about playing our music live. He advised me to put an EP together and take it from there. Pete listened to our tracks on Soundcloud and advised me to speak to Geoff, which we did. Geoff had a listen to the tracks and offered me advice on what to do and how to mix the tracks. He said if we were still struggling then he would be happy to have a go.
The first track Geoff mixed for us was "Guardian Angel". If you listen to the vocal on the final chorus you can hear why we needed Geoff working with us. He took our music to a new level.
Q7. Is Geoff in your plans for your future releases?
Paul.. We do plan to work with Geoff again, hopefully for a long time to come.
The way we work is that Mel and I write all of the tracks, arrange them and record them. We decide upon all of the sounds and basically have the finished track ready for Geoff.
We send the WAV files to Geoff who then mixes them and adds effects. He will do some additional production work on the tracks, maybe on the drums or bass, (having said that he ditched our drum track on the Silent Cries track and re-wrote it completely), then he will master the track.
We will probably continue to work in this way going forward but that will have to be decided upon as and when the tracks are written. We don't intend on working with anybody else but Geoff on the future releases.
Q8. It's no secret 'Far Off Land' is a personal favourite track of mine, It will probably be my Track of The Year - It is constantly being labelled as sounding like Ultravox, Are you happy with that? Is that the direction you want Eurasianeyes to take?
Paul.. Thank you Andy. That's a great compliment, I'm pleased you like it, it's probably my favourite track that we've done.
It does get mentioned a lot about it sounding like Ultravox. We take it as a massive compliment as we are huge Ultravox fans. The big difference is the likes of Ultravox were churning out these type of tracks 25-30 odd years ago when all of the toys we have these days weren't available. It's a lot easier these days to produce this music than it was back then. Those lads have real talent.
The worrying thing for us it that people think we are trying to copy Ultravox. That is not the case. Unfortunately though the sounds we like are the same as the sounds that Ultravox used so comparisons are inevitable. Also we have listened to those lads for 30 odd years so something is bound to rub off.
When Mel sings certain phrasing can be similar to Midge Ure. Again Mel is not trying to copy Midge as that is the natural sound of Mel's voice and the way he naturally phrases things when he sings. We were worried about the comparisons and at first Mel did try to re-phrase his words but it didn't work.
I think the other reason "Far Off Land" does have more of an Ultravox feel to it as opposed to the tracks on the "Silent Cries" EP is due to the fact is was originally written in 1996 / 97 when we were just starting writing and Ultravox were a huge influence. We never expected anyone to hear it back then. We did try to re-hash it and it has changed slightly to the original but it is what it is and we are very proud of it.
The direction of Eurasianeyes is just to keep writing music we enjoy and that people will enjoy listening to. We never had a plan when we started Eurasianeyes and we are still trying to find our true sound. There is more to come from us in the future and some tracks may sound like Ultravox but our ultimate aim is for the tracks to sound like Eurasianeyes.
Q9. Have you and Mel got a backlog of tracks from the past 12 years that you are sieving through and working on at the moment?
Paul.. We have a backlog of tracks going back to 1996 :) Although granted we haven't been consistently writing all of that time.
We also have a backlog of tracks from the original tracks we uploaded to you-tube. These will need re-working but there is potential in some of them.
The next EP will probably have a couple of the older tracks and some of the newer ones also.
Q10. You must be overwhelmed by the way you have being catapulted into the electro/synth scene.
Paul.. We are shocked.
We didn't think anyone would be interested in our music and that's the Gods honest truth. We started it as a hobby and we were just 2 middle aged lads having a laugh.
The response and feedback that we have had has been amazing and we can't thank people enough for that.
The fact that people are buying our music makes us feel very proud.
In terms of the music business we haven't achieved anything and probably never will but in terms of ourselves we have achieved far more than we could have ever hoped for.
Q11. Will we see Eurasianeyes hit the live circuits in 2014 and if so who do you want to tour with apart from Ultravox ;-)
Paul.. You will see Eurasianeyes doing live shows in 2014. We don't intend to do a lot but the ones we do we aim to put on a good show :)
All of the gigs seem to be so far away from us as we live in the Sunderland area. That may be a problem but we'll be out there giving it a go.
You have guessed Ultravox would be our dream gig. Apart from those lads I would personally like to gig alongside the likes of Howard Jones, Gary Numan, Depeche' Mode, but let's face it, who wouldn't ? :)
Obviously those lads are not going to happen but everyone can dream :)
Finally Paul. Thanks for being part of the Q&A section on Revival Synth. Is there anything you would like to add? links/mentions etc....
Paul.. Thank you to you Andy for doing the video's for "Far Off Land". We were over the moon when we saw them.
If people would like to learn more about us they check out our links as you have kindly provided on the left hand side.
If people would like to buy our music it is available on Amazon, iTunes, CDBaby, etc. The CD version of the "Silent Cries" EP is available from our website.
We'd like to thank everyone who has played us on their radio shows and thank you to everyone who has listened and gave us encouraging comments.
And thank you to you Andy for providing the Revival Synth website and allowing us the opportunity to do a Q&A section for it. Much appreciated :)