Louise Steel has just released her new album ‘Heartstorm’, one for lovers of passionate melodic rock. We ask Louise a few Qs about the album, its recording and her future musical plans…
What have you got planned musically for the next few months?
Now that’s it’s out there in the world, the plan is to promote ‘Heartstorm’ and get the word out to as many people as possible that this is one storm they really don’t want to miss!
We are looking for more radio play, reviews and are lining up some live performances locally so that people can get to know the songs, but I’m also working on some new ones in the meantime…
We are hoping to record an official music video for ‘Heartstorm’s lead track ‘Can’t Be Cool’ and have discussed a full scripted storyboard with an outside production company. I can’t wait! It’s going to be so much fun! Subscribe to my Youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/louisesteelmusicsite and keep your eyes peeled for the video!
Can you take us through the recording/writing process and stories behind the songs on your ‘Heartstorm’ album?
The majority of the album was recorded over at Big A Productions in Malaysia. It’s where most of the musicians recorded their instruments (drums, guitar, bass and piano). Me and my partner Andrew Dunmore (keyboards) recorded our parts here in our home studio in the UK.
We also had two Americans involved who provided backing vocals and other guitar parts. Their parts and my vocals were sent over to Malaysia and it was all mixed and mastered there. Andrew and I were involved in the process and kept in the loop via regular communication with Mohd Fadzil (project manager), who did a lot to make the project a reality.
In terms of the writing, most of the songs are written by myself. They usually happen as a result of my super strong emotions! (whether I’m feeling angry, sad or incredibly optimistic!) I think that’s where a lot of the intensity comes from in songs like ‘Pedestal’ and ‘Queen of Daggers.’
Pedestal is the track which best sums up what ‘Heartstorm’ is all about. It’s a six-minute emotional storm – very turbulent with lots of changes, and musical highs and lows.
It’s all about someone who struggles with their own worth. Sometimes they feel strong and sometimes they feel weak. They build themselves up and then knock themselves down, but finally they see the light, rise up from their own ashes and stand on the pedestal where they belong. It’s a very empowering song I think. Probably my personal favourite!
How did you get involved with the Malaysian band?
I guess some might call it fate, but I think it was just a really great coincidence that they managed to find my music through the power of the internet! We had been making music videos for Youtube for just over a year when we were contacted by Mohd Fadzil who really liked one of our rock songs ‘Red Hot City’. He asked if his musician friends could do a cover and of course we said yes.
We were just thrilled that somebody was taking an interest! But when the song came back (with my vocals laid over), we were totally blown away. It was wild and it really, really ROCKED! The guitarist had done some pretty scorching guitar solos and the drumming was like nothing we’d ever heard. We realised that these guys were the real deal. It’s what we’d always dreamed of – talented musicians helping to bring our songs to life. So we asked if they’d be interested in working on a whole album of original songs. ‘Heartstorm’ was born and we haven’t looked back since!
Have you been pleased with the reaction to ‘Heartstorm’ so far?
The reaction to the album has been amazing so far! We’ve had tracks played on the BBC Introducing Show and great praise from fans, music critics and people who have heard the songs over the airwaves! One radio station even made the lead track ‘Can’t Be Cool’ their track of the week, which was really cool (ironically!).
What’s really interesting is that there’s a fairly even spread over all the songs when we ask people what their favourite track on the album is. For me as a songwriter this is the greatest reward and I find it really interesting to hear the answers!
Some love the heavier more intense songs like ‘Pedestal’ (one woman called it a masterpiece!) and some prefer the softer, prettier songs like ‘Imperfect Fit’, which really seems to strike a chord. With ‘Heartstorm’ I like to think there’s something for everyone’s tastes. The variety on the album’s the thing I’m most proud of and the fact that we’re sending physical copies out to people all over the world! It’s pretty incredible!
In an ideal wold, who would you like to tour with and why?
It would be incredible to tour with a band like Halestorm. I’m not going to lie, it would also be pretty intimidating as the lead singer (Lzzy Hale) is out of this world vocally, but it would also be pretty inspiring. When I watch her perform, I am in awe, as she’s so fierce. I know I’m not in the same league as her, but I think it would definitely inspire me to up my game and just go for it like she does!
Who have been your main musical influences and why?
My main influence would have to be the American songwriter Jim Steinman who wrote songs for Meat Loaf and Bonnie Tyler. His famous quote is ‘If you don’t go over the top, you can’t see what’s on the other side’ and I really believe in that! His songs are very grand, intense classic rock and I guess that’s what I strive to achieve with my songs.
I admire songwriters who write deep, meaningful lyrics and singers who really rock and pack a punch vocally!
Message for Fans?
If you like rock music packed with intensity, emotion and plenty of passion, you’re going to enjoy Heartstorm! No two tracks are the same so if you’ve heard one song, you really have only heard one song. Give it a listen on Spotify and help spread the word. I can’t thank everyone enough for the support so far! My heart is in every single track on the album, but now it belongs to you
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 2 August 2020.
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