Tied Down

FOREVER STILL

FOREVER STILL - Tied Down

Released on: 2016-10-21

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A new spark of hope has started glowing in the darkness of the rock music scene and with their untamed female lead vocals and haunting melodies the new wildfire named FOREVER STILL is starting to spread from Denmark. Hailing from the same musical shores as LACUNA COIL, FLYLEAF, HALESTORM or BRING ME THE HORIZON, the band has been building a solid fan base since 2013 and toured tireless throughout Europe. And now they are ready to unleash their fresh debut record entitled »Tied Down«.

From clear vocals that you rarely hear in such high quality, to hot tempered screams, frontwoman Maja Shining scores with her unique voice on each of the 10 songs and easily switches from rock hymns like 'Breathe In' to ballads such as the haunting 'Miss Madness'. Catchy earworms flirt with aggressive modern guitar riffs, but in the end the quartet relies on its captivating melodies that transform »Tied Down« into a stunning debut release.

While many young rock bands with a charming frontwoman are often labeled as ‘industry products’ or ‘engineered’, nothing is artificial or marionette-like about FOREVER STILL – writing their own songs is obvious for Maja and multi-instrumentalist Mikkel Haastrup, but the band also put their heart and soul into every other aspect affiliated with their music. Over the years they have booked their own tours, shot their band photos and music videos themselves, produced and mixed their new songs and have consequently climbed their self-constructed ladder to success.

“Yes, we are pretty much a do-it-yourself-band in the widest sense of the word,” Maja explains. “Mikkel and I write the songs and he plays all instruments in the studio, as well as handling the recording, mixing and mastering of our music. I make our music videos, band photos and create album artwork and other design aspects. Mikkel was already working as a sound engineer when we met and has worked with some of the biggest artists in the country as well as being taught by Flemming “Metallica” Rasmussen. All the other things are something we’ve found necessary to teach ourselves along the way. It’s hard to find people who understand your artistic vision, not to mention the financial aspect of it all, and the visuals and sound are such a big part of the music, so why not do it ourselves.”

This all-around-package doesn’t leave them with much time to breathe and of course, they struggled to keep on going some days – but even their doubts and exhaustion weren’t left unused by FOREVER STILL:

“All the lyrics are written from personal experience or at least personal emotion. With our music we want everything to be very raw and honest and the truth is not always pretty, nor should it be. For us the music is an emotional outlet for everything that’d otherwise build up inside and boil over and it’s my experience that a lot of fans use it for that as well. As a lyricist you’re just gonna have to come to terms with putting everything on the table, if you want everyone else to experience what you felt, when you wrote that song - at least for the type of music we make. And I’m okay with that,“ Maja admits. “Each and every song starts from emotion. If we don’t feel it, it’s not gonna happen. A lot of times Mikkel will send me an instrumental part or two and the melodies will immediately start forming in my head. From the get go I know what the theme for the song is going to be, since it comes with the emotion of the instrumentals, but the first melodies I send back to Mikkel will be with somewhat gibberish lyrics. The melodies inspire him to work on the next instrumental part and develop existing parts. We’ll go back and forth and complement each other, until we’re happy and have a finished song.“

Parallels to bands such as EVANESCENCE, IN THIS MOMENT or LACUNA COIL are not to be dismissed, but what makes FOREVER STILL so unique is the fact that they only draw a vague inspiration from these acts and therefore create their own modern mixture of sound that hits the nail right into one’s bare soul:

“You can definitely draw parallels to the genre and emotional music with strong vocals, and I’m positive people who love that side of EVANESCENCE will appreciate what we’re doing. We never take any direct inspiration, so it’s very subconscious what influences our music. One thing that’s for sure is that we listen to a lot of different music, also outside of the genre we write in. I think that’s a strength and a good way to not end up sounding like everyone else. The most inspiring bands to us are those who are able to project emotion through their music. Some bands we enjoy listening to are NINE INCH NAILS, SLIPKNOT, BJÖRK, SMASHING PUMPKINS and PLACEBO.“

While »Tied Down« focuses on topics like anxiety, helplessness and depression, the Danish never wallow in self-pity or drag their fans into the deep, but rather point at the shimmering light at the end of the tunnel, where perseverance and recovery awaits. But of course that road is not always easy to walk, as Maja knows for herself:

“You have to want it. It has to come from the inside and not from someone else. Nothing is going to help you, if you’re not 110% committed to helping yourself. Exclude toxic people from your environment, talk to someone, read self-help books; there are many options to get started. Maybe you wanna chat online with someone about your issues, teach yourself how to meditate... Another thing is to keep yourself occupied with things you like or want to learn or things that get you to a place you want to be - it can be one of the best ways to keep destructive thoughts at bay and prevent you from spiraling down. Most importantly have patience with yourself. It will be a rollercoaster of emotions and a long, tough ride. There’s the cliché saying “it gets better” and it’s only there because enough people stuck around to find out that it’s true.”

That ambivalence between freedom and emotional captivity, fear and hope, darkness and light also reflects in the cover artwork that the frontwoman also created and designed herself:

“We had talked about the album artwork for a while and one day it just hit me while scrolling through Tumblr, as I saw nothing but a pair of hands reaching for the sky on a white background. Everything else just shaped itself around it in my head and I quickly put together a made-up image in Paint consisting of cutouts of whatever I could find on the internet to simulate the different elements I had in mind and sent over the idea to Mikkel. Luckily he liked the concept and could see past my ridiculous cut and paste creation and how we could make it come to life under the title »Tied Down« - a title we had already discussed for the album and which was the perfect fit for this cover art. We’ve put a lot of thought into the artwork inside the cd as well, so people who appreciate that have something to look forward to especially in the limited digipak edition.”

Track list Total runtime
1 - Scars 2:45
2 - Once Upon A Nightmare. 3:57
3 - Miss Madness 3:51
4 - Awake The Fire 3:00
5 - Breathe In 2:47
6 - Save Me 4:25
7 - Your Light 3:52
8 - Alone 3:09
9 - Break The Glass 3:08
10 - Tied Down 3:33
11 - Scars (acoustic) (bonus track) 3:22
12 - Save Me (acoustic) (bonus track) 3:23
13 - Miss Madness (acoustic) (bonus track) 3:24
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