Hayes & Y is a British band whose members are from Finland and Bulgaria, and that seems to have perfectly set itself in the UK indie-pop scene.
Since 2014 the quartet spreads an exciting combination of rock determination and more soulful suggestions, a solution of modern grooves, effective riffs and well thought melodies, in what seems to be a successful live formula and increasingly loved by a growing fanbase.
“Disaster” is their latest metronomic and alt-rock single, a flow of deviant synths and energetic guitars, linked to an incessant drumming and a singing that remains pinned on us, thanks to the addition of a vocal part in falsetto, intense as the pressing implicit warning of the track’s name.
Here is our interview with Hayes & Y, some questions about their present and their unpredictable future, which stimulates the rise of questions about the role and the opportunities of an artist, in this long and uncertain institutional phase of the United Kingdom that is the Brexit.
How did you meet guys ? Tell us about the beginning of your music career. Most of us met way back in high school, some 12 years ago. Apart from our drummer, Dennis, we were all classmates in Bulgaria which is when we initially formed the band. Back then it was more of an after-school activity to pass the time. Having no formal musical background at first nobody knew what they were doing and even though our only rehearsal space was the basement of an unfinished construction site which had no heating whatsoever we carried on because it was incredibly exciting and fun to strive towards this “rock star” fantasy of ours. Years later, when we moved to London we were very lucky to find Dennis and we knew right away that we simply had to steal him for ourselves, making him an integral part of the band.
How changed do you feel by your experience of living in the UK?
It has been illuminating in many ways. We’re definitely quite far off from the naïve youngsters that 4 years ago set out to conquer the UK music scene, expecting instant fame and success. We all grew up adoring British culture and British music and the opportunity to be a part of that scene has taught us much more than we could have expected. Musically, we’ve been able to immensely expand our sound and draw inspiration from the amazing Manchester music scene. Living in the UK has changed all of us in many aspects. Getting to meet lots of new people and experiencing life in a setting completely foreign to what we were used to back in Bulgaria has been eye-opening to say the least. Being able to draw a comparison between two countries with such cultural differences has made us more humble, tolerant and grateful for the unique opportunities afforded to us by our ability to relocate and live in the UK as well as giving us a new appreciation for the realities of living in Bulgaria.
Tell us something about “Disaster”, about the sound and the lyrics.
It was written with the idea of reality TV and celebrity. I read somewhere that celebrities are the new royals and even in a country that still has its own royals, it feels like that’s true. It’s so funny how fast someone can go from total obscurity to being recognised and then losing it all. And it’s so bizarre how it gets to people’s heads. Sound-wise this is the heaviest record we’ve put out in a while and also the fastest. We enjoy playing it live a lot and I think it shows.
What do you think about Brexit and its consequences on European musicians going to the UK to pursue a music career?
To be honest, whether Brexit happens or not is clearly not our decision. We’re just 4 immigrants who’ve made Britain our home. However, we’d be very sad if Britain ends up leaving the EU. Being Europeans ourselves, we’ve always thought of Britain as a fellow European country and a part of the EU family. The idea of open borders between our countries is truly lovely and I think everyone’s enjoyed the last decade and the freedom of movement we’ve all had. Nobody really knows how much more difficult Brexit will make coming to the UK to pursue music, but it might get impossible, especially if they follow up on the idea of a minimum income needed to come here. Artists often work part-time jobs to make ends meet and aren’t as financially stable as other professions. Nonetheless, I’m sure everyone appreciates the importance of talented people coming to the UK and I hope measurements to preserve that will be applied.
Any plan in the foreseeable future?
We’re always planning months in advance. Having released our latest single “Disaster” we’ll be travelling south to London to present it in all its glory on the 5th of December in Notting Hill Arts Club where we’ll have the pleasure of supporting Tin Pigeons. Following that, on the 10th we’ll have a headline gig in Manchester at the Castle Hotel. Not only that, but we’re also going to Bulgaria for Christmas to do a tour of the county during the holiday season and play our biggest headline show to date. It’s going to be massive!