‘Boy Story’ marks a new chapter for the Brooklyn-based band Juice. Originally from Boston, the group comprising Ben Stevens, Christian Rose, Daniel Moss, Kamau Burton, Michael Ricciardulli, Miles Clyatt and Rami El-Abidin met while attending college. Since graduating in 2018, they’ve embarked on a musical journey that resulted in two EPs – ‘Workin’ on Lovin’ and ‘you are simply magnificent’, released in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
Last year was already set-up to be an exciting year for the band. With two EPs under their belt and a trio of singles in hand, Juice was about to embark on their largest headline tour to date. Unfortunately Covid hit and those plans were scrapped altogether.
Under the spectre of 2020’s isolation and general unpleasantness, the group banded together, finding a creative escape through music. For the summer months of 2020, the band lived in an AirBnb in Bloomfield, CT, working on a majority of songs that would become ‘Boy Story’. Their latest single, ‘Superimposed’ (listen here), provides a teaser of sorts into Juice’s new bright, colourful, and captivating sonic world.
Ahead of the release of ‘Superimposed’ we speak to Ben Stevens, Christian Rose and Rami El-Abidin to find out more about their music and the new chapter for Juice following ‘Boy Story’.
You guys have been together since 2018. As a group, how has this journey been like for the past three years?
Christian: While we started touring and playing professionally in 2018, we’ve been a band since 2014 while we were in college together. So we’ve been working together for a long time. Since then we’ve started taking the recording process more seriously and we’ve learned a lot about how to make the songs we want to make. But it’s all the same guys and the same process – just being friends and trying to write the best songs we can write.
This marks your fourth single since 2020. How would you describe your musical progression across these tracks?
Ben: Well, we put out ‘DiCaprio’, ‘Konoha’, ‘Make Pretend’ and now ‘Superimposed’. It’s hard to really distil the full musical progression with just ‘Superimposed’ – it will be more accurately represented across the ‘Boy Story’ project as a whole.
Christian: I think you’ll notice there’s a lot of cool production techniques we’ve been using. With each new recording you’ll see us getting more comfortable experimenting with different types of production. The circumstances of the past two years allowed us to experiment with several different production tools. Whether we were working with a producer in a studio, or living together and recording in the basement, or trying out Logic Pro synth samples.
So, in terms of musical genre, where does Juice fit in your opinion?
Rami: Honestly, I don’t know.
Your music tackles themes like anxiety, doubt, and self-growth. Why are these narratives so important to the group?
Christian: I feel like they are an honest part of our journey as a band and people’s journey as they grow up and experience life. These themes are the rawest and most honest to write about. I think it’s important and I hope people resonate with it and take something from it and feel like they have someone speaking to the things they’re feeling.
You’re about to begin touring again in October with ‘Boy Story’. How does it feel to begin touring again?
Christian: It’s sick!
Ben: So, so tired. This past week we had four shows and across the shows there were these different levels. Like, I was receiving more love from the crowds and the energy was being received by them in a more fulfilling way too. Compounded by the fact that everyone has been stuck inside and unable to have live music and the fact that you haven’t seen some of these people in so long – we’ve just been thankful that our fans have stuck around with us.
Christian: Yeah, I don’t know if this is a short term feeling or what, but I’ve found myself taking the shows less for granted. I’ve been trying my best to make sure I’m sounding good every show and that we’re giving the fans the best experience they can have.
We’d played a million shows before the pandemic and I think it would sometimes get to the point where you’d play a show and maybe it wasn’t for a big audience. Then you go play 10 shows in the past 20 days and it just gets really tiring. But now after not being able to play for so long, I had missed it so much personally. Coming back to it and being able to do it, I want to do it to the best of my ability every time because it’s such a special thing and it’s such a great feeling.
Speaking of ‘Boy Story’, it marks a new chapter for Juice. What inspired this?
Rami: We had no choice but to sit and write because of the pandemic. I guess we’re all getting a little older and reflecting on the journey we’ve had so far in our lives and as a band.
Check out ‘Superimposed’ here.
(Main Image: Samuel David Katz)