Entering into the Sudbury, Ontario, music scene is solo artist, Burn The Flames. BTF is fronted by local teen David Browne, who has always had a love for music, whether it be listening to his favourite artists, or preforming live. In early July, he stepped into the studio for the first time to record his debut EP. On September 2, 2015, his dreams came true as his album was released and he was able to host his album release party with his friends and family.
Lashbrook: What Made You Want To Become A Musician?
Browne: My buddy Cameron invited me into a band back in grade nine. I was just a singer then, and he made me want to learn guitar, because I wanted to play like him. I still can’t do that, but I I ended up on bass, which I found was my personal best instrument. Then from there I started to accumulate instruments and I started playing more and more and as that happened my music taste got bigger, and my voice got better through training, and that is how it all came together.
L: So You Have Been Involved In A Few Local Bands Perviously, So What Made You Want To Go Solo?
B: The thing is, i’m very busy with many other things, like at the time I was taking dance, vocal lessons, guitar lessons, I was always involved in at least two to three shows [theatre] a year, and I would shove band in whenever I could. The first few bands, I had complications in. A mix of different opinions, music style changes, but the one band I was in, i’m very proud of them, as this year they will be playing at Sudbury Metal Fest this October. But I just thought since I had already started writing songs, and I wanted my music to be more rock and punk, instead of metal, I would go solo and continue to write my own stuff, because I couldn’t really find a band that wanted to do what I was planning on doing.
L: With This Being Your First Album, What Would You Say You Learnt About Recording and Releasing An Album?
B: Well, I learnt that you should always get an exact price, because a lot of things can move around and change. It was interesting to get the experience of being in a studio, because previously I had never been in a studio before and recorded anything. So going into the studio and sitting there, going through the process of the drummer coming in and doing his thing, [because I wasn’t much of a drummer at that time], was quite the interesting experience. The same goes for when we were doing the bass tracks and multiple guitar tracks, vocal tracks, and overlaying the vocals, and then having someone mix it and get my approval. It was such a different process to what I’m used to, when i’m playing live. Usually i’m just playing covers, not my own songs, it was just so different for me. But it was a great experience and I hope to go back in when I have more songs written so then I can record a whole album, instead of just an EP.
L: So Are There Any Song(s) That You Wrote That You Wish You Could Have Put On The Album?
B: Well, I say that, “Fire In The Courthouse” was the first song that I wrote, but in reality there was one that came before, and sadly it didn’t shape up in time for recording, even though I started working on it way in advance. I had wanted to record a five song EP, but because that didn’t come together, the song didn’t get on the album even though I really wish it had. I will probably end up on an album someday, just unfortunately not this one.
L: What Song(s) on the EP are you most proud of?
B: I tried to explore four different styles of music on this album, so they all mean a lot to me, and i’m very proud of them all in different ways. “Fire In The Courthouse,” is so alternative and spacey, that reminds me of a Muse, riff and I find that really cool and I wanted to explore that side of music, but then I wrote, ‘Rebirth,” which is a slow acoustic song. After that, I had written “Working Class March,” maybe a few days before I hit the studio, and with that one I was aiming for a Jack White sound. It’s a more blues, punk rock sound, and since I really am into basically everything that Jack White does, I really wanted to incorporate that sound into one of the songs. Then after that I really started to get into B.B. King, and the drummer [from the album], put rock drums in behind a regular blues track, and that is the only track on the album that has two guitar tracks. I’m really proud of that one because it really shows something different, as it has a more blues style, which I find is my strongest area. I really am just proud of all the work that was put into each song and how they turned out.
L: You Are Currently In High School, So What Are Your Plans Once You Graduate?
B: I plan to stay an extra year and do a victory lap, to pick up some courses that I am interested in getting. Then my plan is to move to Toronto and study performance arts at George Brown Theatre School. I might take off with music, I might choose to stay in acting, or I might decide to go to school for a back up plan. But right now I’m not to sure yet.
L: Which Artist(s) Would You Say Are Your Largest Musical Influences?
B: The artist that is my absolute favourite, always has been, is Michael Jackson. You probably won’t hear that in my music but he really is my hero. Musically, my influences range from my favourite band Green Day, to Anthrax, Jack White, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Mastodon, Falling In Reverse, Echosmith, Slipknot, Linkin Park, Korn, Deftones, The Ramones, The Sex Pistols, Dead Kennedys, and Blink-182. My musical influences have a really huge range and to name everyone would be almost impossible.
L: Do You Have Any Plans For Any Music Videos For The Album?
B: If I could get someone to direct it and film it, I would be interested.
L: Out off all the hard work that you put into this album, which part was your favourite?
B: Well, this whole process was a large step for me, musically and financially, I can’t pick a part of it that I loved, just with the money and stress that it brought with it. It was a great experience for me, and if I can do it again, I’ll be back in the studio.
Keep an eye out for Burn The Flames and David’s upcoming releases.
Alyssa (Rolling Music Reviews)