#YMXINTERVIEW | Spiritual themes and indie sounds – In conversation with THERE ARE STORMS

There Are Storms is the moniker of Kevin Wilkins, a songwriter and producer from Wilmington, US. His press pitch was pretty interesting and curious, affirming how we should work with him out of sheer pity, him being 40 years old and having 8 children. We can safely say it’s not pity that drives us to him, but rather a profound sense of curiosity, and the willingness to remind ourselves how music can exist in every situation, at the highest quality. After the release of Kevin’s last single, ‘Where Can You Be?’, we sat down with the American singer to find out more about his artistic universe:

YMX: Can you tell us about yourself as an artist? Where are you now, how you started, and what are your goals. 

TAS: I have been doing music for almost twenty years. Alternative Rock was my bag for most of that but in the last year I have moved into Synthpop and even some Hip Hop. As someone who came up on Alt Rock, it has been surprising to see it fade so much, at least in the US. So, I began experimenting with singing in new genres like Pop and Hip Hop. I like music no matter the genre.

YMX: Some of our readers might not be familiar with you yet, how would you describe your sound? 

TAS: I like to say Edgy Male Electro Pop. As far as content, I try to keep it subtle but I use a lot of spiritual themes. And when I say spiritual I mean Catholic. That means talking about objective truths when the culture has gone the other way. If I am overt about it like in Christian Rock, so many people will immediately tune out. I try to keep it lite but I want to crawl into people’s minds and make them think a little bit.

YMX: Who have been your biggest influences so far? 

TAS: Oasis, Talking Heads, David Bowie, Elvis Costello, Kasabian. And of course, anything 80s.

YMX: You recently released a powerful single, ‘Where Can You Be?’. Can you tell us how that project came about? 

TAS: “Where Can You Be” The song is a play on the opening song to the film classic “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.” Definitely not woke ha, ha. Its about these lonely brothers living in the mountains. They get the idea into their heads to abduct and marry seven women from town figuring that once they are married, it will too late to do anything about it like the Romans and Sabines. Well, obviously, its very funny. So I wrote a modern take on that. Which I know sounds creepy, but remember, Edgy Male Electro Pop.

YMX: 2020 has been a hard year for everybody, but the music industry and arts in general took a heavy hit. How did you guys cope with that, musically speaking? 

TAS: I think music was in dire straits prior to this. You saw labels moving into 360 deals, etc. Indie musicians, as usual, were having a tough time cutting through the noise to find their audience on social media. There is a ton of talent out there all vying for attention and the audience only has so much attention to give in a day. Covid hastened the music industry’s already decline in my opinion. But there are lots of positives too. Technology lets some kid in his bedroom make music on a computer and put it out there to the world. Pretty amazing.

YMX: Do you consider important working together in a team, or do you prefer working alone? 

TAS: I wish I had a team! Music is a lonely place. You pour your heart into it and it becomes simultaneously exhilarating and depressing. I have bandmates in my Alt-Rock project The Boardwalk Club. The biggest downside to working with other people is most people don’t take it serious enough. The upside is if you have 4 serious people with a passion for music you can divide up the promotional work necessary for any music project these days.

YMX: What are you looking for, in terms of promotion? What do you think could be helpful to promote your music around? 

TAS: This! Having someone take notice of your music and then introduce it to other people is amazing and I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.

YMX: What does playing live represent for you? a way to make yourself known or a way to express yourself? 

TAS: It’s a way to make myself known. For me, music was always a solitary, personal thing of listening to someone tell you about their world. The artists you love are the ones where you want to climb right in because it speaks to you. Don’t get me wrong, playing live is fun but it can be pretty superficial. I am guilty of spending too much time getting my hair perfectly disheveled for shows.

YMX: Finally, what are your plans for the future? (releases, gigs etc.) 

TAS: I am on track to release a single every week for the next 5 weeks and hopefully I can continue that pace beyond that. After releasing “Where Can You Be,” I released another single called “Landmine”s last week. I am also dabbling in hip hop but don’t want to embarrass myself! So you might see some of that down the road.

A recommended listen!