Mustard had the pleasure of speaking with Floated whose first of two EP’s “SIZZLE” comes out today! Together we discussed their history with music, playing with Frankie Cosmos, their songwriting process, and their newest EP “Sizzle”. Check it out below!
Hello! Mustard is grateful to have you join them! How are you doing today?
I’m great, thanks for asking. Roasting in this summer heat.
You’re a classically trained pianist and multi-instrumentalist. Which instrument did you learn first? How did your time learning this instrument help impact and influence you to learn others? Is there a song on the piano, after being trained on it, you would rather not hear anymore?
I started playing the Piano and the Drums roughly around the age of 5. Drums I was being taught casually by my father, while Piano I enrolled in classical piano lessons. Studying the piano at such a depth from such a young age really empowered me to grasp music as a whole and made it much easier to pick up other instruments as needed. I had actually never even touched a bass guitar before when I had agreed to play bass in Frankie Cosmos. Up until Frankie Cosmos I had been playing drums in bands my entire life. It’s actually one of my greatest passions that I currently don’t spend much time doing. However I’ve been able to funnel my passion for drumming to creating the drum parts for my electronic music. And Hmm tbh I laugh to myself when I hear old Cold Play songs because me and every other piano nerd had learned several on the piano. I think I’ve heard those songs enough back in middle school.
Before branching off for your solo career you toured and recorded as the bassist for the band Frankie Cosmos. Could you share more about your involvement in the group?
Being the bassist of Frankie Cosmos was truly an amazing experience. It all started when my brother (Aaron) and his girlfriend (Greta) showed me the first studio Frankie Album, “Zentropy”, that they had just finished. I was like damn this is beautiful! I half jokingly offered to play bass for them…half jokingly because I didn’t know how to play the bass, but also the bass parts sounded easy enough and it seemed fun to start this little family band situation. So we started playing shows and immediately I was like, oh this is different. The performances were fun as hell and we already had fans, and then the album dropped and things rocketed from there. It was a wild 4 years I spent with them. We played so many shows I can hardly believe it now when I think back on it. Traveled all over the place, recorded 2 more albums, started singing harmonies, started being able to write more interesting bass parts, and played some crazy shows that I’ll never forget. Of course all things that burn so brightly burn quickly. By the end of my time with the band I was extremely burned out from touring and ultimately felt the need to explore my newly found desire to write my own songs.
Mustard wonders what is your songwriting process.
My song writing process usually always starts with my creating some instrumental elements of the track. Sometimes I’ll have lyrics pop into my head throughout the day, or I’ll read or hear something that sticks in my head as a meaningful lyric that I could build a song around, but more than not Lyrics only start coming to me when I’m listening to an instrumental idea I’ve laid out. In the conception of a song I usually create the basic instrumental shell, and record a verse and the chorus. Rarely do I have enough juice to write the 2nd verse and beyond in the first go. That can come either the next day or sometimes the next year. I’m pretty much always in the mood to be in the studio creating new ideas. I’ve actually in the past 6 months or so have been intentionally trying to not write too many new songs because I have piles and piles of unreleased material. Instead I’m trying to be disciplined and use that time to focus on releasing these albums I’ve got ready and developing the live show.
Who (or what) influences you?
Back before I started writing songs, in college I was just interested in making instrumental electronic music. The Artists Tycho, Shigeto, and James Blake are largely responsible for my interest in making electronic music. Then I started dating this girl who blessed me by introducing me to Madlib, Flying Lotus, Clams Casino, and the like. So for years I was perfecting my beat making abilities in Ableton. It’s a little embarrassing to say but when Drake’s “If You’re Reading This It’s Too late” dropped I was like….Ok shit now I want vocals on my music. I loved that album. So then began my long and painful journey of learning how to sing and write. I say painful because….unlike picking up the bass guitar….my previous musical experience did not gift me a natural voice or natural songwriting powers. Those I had to acquire the cold hard way; years of writing shit songs before I finally learned how to sing and write the way I wanted to. Frank Ocean was another huge influence on me, specifically for his voice and his lyricism. Lately I’ve been really inspired by Fred Again, this UK house artist who I love.
“Daylight” was featured on Apple Music’s INDIY playlist. What was it like to see your song on this playlist? How important is it for an artist to land on a playlist? Is there a playlist you’d love for your music to be featured on?
Yea having my song on the INDIY playlist was cool. I would imagine most artists feel about playlists how I feel…the more people our music can reach the better. I’d love to see my music on POLLEN….lots of great artists are on there.
At the end of the month you’ll be releasing SIZZLE, one of two EPs. As a condiment Mustard loves the name. What can fans expect from these EPs? Do you have a favorite food that sizzles?
So yes “Sizzle” is the first of two EP’s. Sizzle is kind of an intro EP if you will. It’s half instrumental, and half minimal vocals. And it’s pretty mellow. The following EP is much bigger of a sound, tons of lyrics and vocal parts, and much livelier energy. I love both the EP’s, I’ve got lots of musical ideas in me so it’s fun to have different EP’s take on different characteristics.
Throw me a burger on the grill and let it Sizzzzleeee
Where can readers listen to your music?
You can find my music on all the major streaming platforms as well as on the Totally Real Record’s bandcamp page!