Audio,  Music Reviews

Set Out in the Other Direction and Found the Way: An Interview with Steve Gunn

Continually perfecting his technique, Steve Gunn is the epitome of a guitar virtuoso. He creates complex melodies, but manages to deliver them in such a naturally effortless way. He is self taught, which makes it all the more impressive. What draws me to his work is the actual content of the music he produces; his songs cover topics that should be written about, but are frequently overlooked by the music industry. Through his work he manages to uncover the important elements in life, like truth and love, which are normally buried in society. He writes about what really matters: people entering your life and changing your perceptions, evolving, wandering and discovering yourself.

Listening to his recent album, Eyes on the Lines, feels like the soundtrack to a significant transition in your life. It outlines topics like being lost and finding yourself again. It is folky and sentimental; it is hard to imagine Steve used to play in hard-core punk bands. I’m sure glad he stumbled upon the albums of Miles Davis and John Coltrane, as they significantly impacted his sound. One of my favourite numbers from the album is “Park Bench Smile”; it is hauntingly beautiful and incorporates winding soulful elements, which results in a sound best described as a version of classic Americana too deep and mysterious for words. “Night Wanderer” is another favourite, which embraces that quintessential folk sound, while adding some more depth through soulful elements.

He produces a sound that is soulful, bluesy yet fresh. Steve is the true definition of an artist by producing a sound that is profound, yet comes across very simple; he clearly takes his craft seriously.

I was lucky enough to speak with Steve before his show at Sugar Factory in Amsterdam.

Speaking with him is very much a gift; he has an incredibly calm air about him that makes you feel warm and comforted. He is kind, down to earth and answers everything very openly and honestly. This is incredibly refreshing in an industry filled with egos and people veering towards inauthenticity. He allows us to experience himself, including his vulnerabilities, which makes the listening experience that much more pleasurable.

Take a look at our interview below:

Interested in finding out more and supporting his music?

Visit his website: www.steve-gunn.com

Review written by Isabella Moulton– a stylist and designer by day, and aesthetic aficionado by night. For inquiries, please contact her at: theeccentricbourgeoisie@gmail.com | Keep it groovy <3

My passion for music was cultivated by my parents, who took me to see obscure bands perform and encouraged me to start my own record collection at a young age. I grew up listening to Pink Floyd and Peter Frampton with my mom; she told me if I listened to Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” in complete darkness my life would be forever changed…I did and it was, thanks mom. From then on I realised that music does not exist solely to colourfully take up time, but is rather an experience that should be had as many times as possible. One of the first concerts I attended was The Who at the Hollywood Bowl, but as a teenager I started seeing a lot of indie bands at the local music hall, and was fascinated by the story their music told. Every song has a story and I wanted to hear it. So here I am, currently based in Vienna and work as a stylist and designer for my own company “The Eccentric Bourgeoisie” -- I’ll happily add some extravagance to your dull wardrobe or give you some flair to help you stand out above the rest at an event ;) I have lived in the US, Canada, Malaysia, Spain, the UK, the Netherlands and Italy. Wherever I have travelled music has allowed me to broaden my horizons by experiencing new things and meeting interesting people. It has the ability to connect people from different cultures and generations, influencing the way we think and feel…there’s nothing quite like it. The way it can capture the essence of a time, the energy of a people, and allow later generations to relive it is awe-inspiring.
 My musical interests predominately centre on what was produced in the 1960’s and 1970’s, but I also appreciate more modern bands as well. Something happened during this time musically and artistically which can never be recreated; it was like a sonic boom of creativity. I am drawn to the fashion, art films (Especially Nouvelle Vague and Giallo) and the records which were produced during this magical period in history. I have a soft spot for 1960’s garage, glam rock and of course French Playboy singers. My top picks include: T. Rex, Jacques Dutronc, Nino Ferrer, The Doors, Joe Dassin, the Kinks and Jacqueline Taieb. I adore modern bands which take the musical energy created in previous decades and build on it; some of my favourites are the Triptides and Mystic Braves. Show me your record collection and I’ll show you mine. Know some great band I should listen to? Get in contact! I’m always looking to expand my musical horizons.