From Sweden to Los Angeles, Grizfolk Discuss Influences, Bastille + More
Even though Grizfolk might be considered new on the scene, their recent stint on the road with Bastille put them directly in the spotlight; they are, without a doubt, a band you need to keep an eye on.
Although they officially got together in Los Angeles, the introduction of electronic and hip-hop elements from their two sole Swedish members bring a different dynamic to this otherwise alternative rock band -- and let's not forget about the tight vocal harmonies that would give any acoustic folk band a run for their money. With their new EP, 'From the Spark,' which hit the streets earlier this year, Grizfolk are in a perfect position for a huge 2015.
Diffuser had the chance to speak with the men behind Grizfolk and find out how it felt to be part of the 'Mr. Peabody & Sherman' soundtrack, tips on keeping their vocals in check and if there will ever be a Bastille-Grizfolk collaboration.
How did the band get together?
We met in Los Angeles, through mutual friends. Several of us were working on different projects together prior to Grizfolk.
So you're based in L.A., but you guys have some Swedish roots. How have both places influenced your music?
Fredrik [Eriksson] and Sebastian [Fritze] are Swedish, and bring an electro and hip-hop element to the project. Adam's [Roth] influences are rooted in the south -- and in American rock and roll -- which is a common thread we all share.
What's the story behind the name of the band?
Before we had actually formed a band, Adam's nickname used to be Griz Adams. When we first wrote 'The Struggle,' we needed a name for Soundcloud so we used that. When the song started going viral we decided to pursue this as a band and came up with a name that could include our fans and community.
What's 'The Struggle' about?
It's a story that represents an awakening from hardship; from difficult times we grow stronger.
Your track, 'Way Back When,' was featured in the animated film, 'Mr. Peabody & Sherman.' How did you guys feel when you got the song on that movie?
We were thrilled to work with such great people, from the director and producer of the movie to the cast. It's still an honor to hear from parents that their three-year-old kids are singing the song.
Well, since it's based on going back in time, if you could go back to any time period or historical event, which one would go?
The '60s ... for a Doors concert.
Grizfolk have great vocal harmonies. What are some tips to keep your voices in shape?
We warm up with harmonies before we go onstage. We also do scales while making a fishy face and making a buzzing noise with our lips.
After seeing you and Bastille come together during the finale song at Radio City Music Hall last month, there was a clear camaraderie between the bands. Any chance of there being a collaboration between you two in the future? Maybe already one in the works?
Nothing in the works at the moment but that would be amazing. Dan [Smith] is an amazing songwriter and they're all incredible musicians.
While you both are relatively still new on the scene, was there anything you learned from seeing them onstage?
Definitely. They work extremely hard onstage, always moving and focused heavy on crowd participation. They connect with the audience at every moment.
Now that you have the EP out, when will we get to see the album?
The full length is almost done, and we will be announcing a release date very soon!
Aside from your own music, what song is your anthem for 2014?
Our anthem is Volcano Choir's 'Byegone.'
And finally, what are your plans for 2015?
Lots of touring! We hope to play as many shows as possible as far and wide across the world as we can go.
Watch Grizfolk's New Lyric Video for 'Hymnals'
Grizfolk are just a couple of dates away from wrapping up their fall tour, with a stop in Los Angeles on Nov. 20 and Pomona on Nov. 21. Get their tour itinerary -- and details on 'From the Spark' -- at their official website here.