2018 has already been a whirlwind for alternative folk-rock quintet BRYNN. After opening for Incubus on their South African tour, the band will be releasing their highly anticipated debut album Querencia, alongside a string of events and live performances.
Hailing from Cape Town, South Africa, BRYNN is the product of a few of South Africa’s finest musicians: Jules Terea, Hezron Chetty, Eddy Kriel, David Van Vuuren and Alex Smillie (both Southern Wild). They have taken their high energy performance to a host of South African festivals since their 2017 inception, including Up the Creek, Smoking Dragon and River Republic.
We caught up with vocalist and rhythm guitarist Jules Terea to chat about the recent developments, their influences and some insight into the upcoming album.
To those not familiar with you, how would you describe your sound?
We would describe our sound as Alternative/Soul Rock.
Your debut album Querencia will be released on the 14th of March. Can you take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when putting music together?
I wrote all the songs on my own or with Alex Smillie and then they were brought to the band to be workshopped together and we re-arranged and pull them apart until we found a place where they were working. It was a very collaborative, very open process and we all threw ideas around and thought about how to express what each song is saying and lyrically what it means. We tried to find a way to translate that properly through all of our instruments, styles and thought processes.
Studio work and music creation or performing and interacting with a live audience, which do you prefer?
I think the two are very different processes, studio work is a creative outlet for us and we experiment a lot which we enjoy but I think we really come alive when we perform for an audience and that’s where we thrive.
You recently supported Incubus at Greenpoint Stadium. Can you tell us about the experience and the chemistry on stage?
It’s of course a huge honour to open for a band that’s shaped so much of the music we hear today and seeing them live was an incredible experience. To see a band of that caliber, with that kind of experience…it’s hard to explain as a musician. It’s everything you strive for. To operate on that level. So more than anything, the experience was inspiring.
Is there any gig you’ve done or performance you would prefer to forget?
Definitely not hey, I think even the ones that are incredibly difficult to get through sometimes end up becoming some of the ones you learn the most from. Some of my worst gigs have been the gigs that actually changed my everything – changed the way I approach music, changed the way I approach
performing and so forth. I think you have to stumble, you have to screw up, you have to embarrass yourself and you have to go through those things, I don’t think there is any other way to learn. You have to go through the motions and learn through experience, so I don’t think there is any gig I would
prefer to forget. I think you always learn and you come out alright as long as you have the right mentality, and I think we do.
Any new artists on your radar?
A new artist that’s on our radar is definitely Orah & The Kites, we think they are a wonderful band. They are three incredibly talented ladies who are making very delicate and heartfelt music.
If you could collaborate with, or perform alongside any artist past or present, who would it be? And why?
Nina Simone, Ray LaMontagne, Robert Plant, Ani DiFranco, Anderson .Paak or Benjamin Clementine. All artists that take bold risks for the sake of passion and expression and for the love of their art. Hugely inspiring artists to me personally.
Tell us about any upcoming shows or releases you have in the pipeline.
We have our official album launch at Mercury Live this coming Friday (9 March). Joining us on the bill is Southern Wild, Crimson House and Hezron Chetty & The ZugZwang. More details here. We will be releasing our debut album Querencia on the 14th of March on all major online platforms!