21-year old guitar-slinger Kyle Nicolaides has earned comparisons to Jimmy Page, Jack White and The Black Keys for his de-tuned, fiery guitar heroics. An appreciator of the classics — from Bob Dylan to Sylvia Plath — the former USC lit major named his band after a track from George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass.
On April 17, Beware Of Darkness will release the single bundle “Howl” on iTunes, to be followed by a full-length debut LP this fall on Bright Antenna Records.
Check out four new lyric videos for “Howl,” “Culture Bomb,” “Holy Men” and “Ghost Town,” and read our interview with Nicolaides below.
How did you learn to play guitar?
I wanted to play bass originally, When I was 12, I went into Jensens Guitar in Santa Barbara and told them I wanted to be a bassist. Instead, they gave me a right handed guitar, (I’m left handed…) and told me I was going to be a guitar player.
In hindsight I guess it worked out well, because it’s probably a big contributor as to why I even started writing songs in the first place. But even then, I’m still sour because there’s a left handed bass player inside of me dying to get out.
What can you tell us about your upcoming album?
The record is going to be called Orthodox. The origin of the word is “true”/”straight” + “belief”. I want to make a straightforward and honest LP, both lyrically and musically.
I think this record is about being young and coming into your first awareness of the world; taking your first honest gulp of life. It’s realizing how a planet is run, taking a look at the people who live on it, seeing all the things that are wrong and being disillusioned/angry; saying this is terrible/fucked up, and wanting badly to change it. It’s coming from a place of caring to make people more aware of a truth/situation in hopes of making their life better. I know these fancy/hyperbolic abstract words and aesthetically romantic ideals give you absolutely no clues as to how it will actually sound… so just trust me for like 4 months… it’s going to be a rad LP.
Who are your lyrical influences?
Poets I am influenced by are Sylvia Plath, Allen Ginsberg, and Amy Gerstler. I’m a wide eyed fan-girl of David Foster Wallace, and want to marry Fiona Apple.
What was your approach to songwriting for the songs on this record?
My only approach to songwriting is to make sure that a song comes out. Being that, I could answer this in around 12 different ways, but it would probably fill up the whole internet, and I don’t think anyone cares to hear me narcissistic-ally drag on about my tragically lifelong power struggle of a samba dance with the vixen of songwriting as I try to seduce and behead her. But, my more focused aesthetic approach was that I wanted to write potent, relevant lyrics for 2012, create songs with emotional impact, and/or shred in your face with my guitar.