Exploding onto the Brighton scene with an enveloping arena-ready sound, ISLA are the city’s latest alt-rock juggernauts.
The anthemic outfit unveiled their heavier sonic direction earlier this year, and latest single ‘Peace / Piece’ is a stunning follow-up that builds hypnotically before erupting.
On the back of their recent release, we caught up with the trio to talk influences, live shows and music recommendations.
How would you describe ISLA to a stranger?
“ISLA are an alt-rock band who blend elements of conventional rock and guitar riffs to create atmospheric and emotional ambience.”
Who are the biggest influences on your sound and why?
“Collectively, we as a band take influences from Queens of the Stone Age, Foals and Nothing But Thieves. All three bands blend heavy rock with chattiness, but all in different ways. QOTSA have a vintage edge to their sound, Foals blend indie rock and Nothing But Thieves mix both 90s grunge and modern electronics to make their heavy rock accessible to a much wider audience. Lead vocalist Ed’s personal influences also include Jeff Buckley and Chris Cornell and Alex loves the energy that Jack Bevan (Foals’ drummer) presents.”
What was the best gig you’ve played so far?
Ed Brown (lead vocals/guitar): “Debut Nottingham show at The Maze, as that’s my hometown.”
Andy Adams (backing vocals/bass): “I would have to say our most recent gig supporting Ruby Dutch for their EP release show at Patterns.”
Alex Woodward (drums): “Debut EP Launch at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar last October”
You’re based in Brighton – what’s your local music scene like?
“The Brighton music scene is crazy. With so many acts across almost any genre you can think of, so there’s always someone to see. But the best part of the Brighton scene is that the general public in Brighton are genuinely interested in local music so there’s always new faces at shows as well as familiar ones.”
Who are the THREE other new artists we should listen to right now and why?
“Gnarlah – three-piece alt-rock band that rides the line between rock and metal, matching big riffs and choruses with the aggression of bands like Slipknot.
Vertigo – a five-piece band that take their songs to the next level. With Megan Hill’s powerful voice coupled with soaring guitar leads, their music is truly larger than life
Peace in Protest – another three-piece band. They blend catchy choruses and big riffs in a very natural way. Their music is reminiscent of bands like Biffy Clyro.
Two more, please!!!! Beach Riot (fuzzy) and Jarki Monno (super talented, watch this boy)!”
And finally, what does 2019 hold for ISLA?
“Our single ‘Peace / Piece’ was just released (Friday 14th June). This will be followed by another summer release, to be announced soon!
Gig-wise, a dream would be to play abroad. Shorter term, we hope to be supporting bigger bands visiting Brighton and also plan to announce some exciting shows early next year! Watch this space!”