A few years ago, back before Mix It All Up was a blog, we once saw Glassmaps live supporting Howling Bells at Wedgewood Rooms! So when the news of new music came about, we were rather excited by it. If the photo looks familiar, Glassmaps is the solo project of Joel Stein of Howling Bells and he is set to release his debut solo album ‘Strangely Addicted’ later this year on Lost In The Manor Records. But in the meantime, we caught up with Joel to discuss the album and the future.
Hiya! Firstly, so that our readers can know a bit more about you, please introduce yourself:
Hi! So, a little about me then! I grew up in Australia near the sea and following my heart moved to London/Brighton some time ago, I never looked back. I was always listening to allot of guitar music for example, mainly old blues records mixed in with miles Davies, boards of Canada and 60’s/70’s psych rock/pop. Perhaps my music fits into some of these genres. It’s difficult to hear you’re own voice, but I can say that the ocean can be heard in some of my songs!
This Glassmaps record was recorded in isolation in Las Vegas in the back of bassist of the Killers, Mark Stoermer’s house. I loved recording this album as I was free to create and explore without any boundaries.
Your debut album ‘Strangely Addicted’ is set for release later this year, are there any ongoing themes running throughout the tracks?
There are no conscious ongoing themes that I know of… The album was written all over the world throughout different periods of my life, so the only consistent theme would be that of someone who is growing and exploring one self.
I feel like Glassmaps could have a lot of interesting connotations, is there a story behind the name?
There actually is a story behind the name but it’s not that interesting! I chose the name because I wanted an email address that didn’t exist, so Glassmaps was invented.
From the beginning, did you know exactly what you wanted Glassmaps to become, or has it changed with time and grown into something you didn’t expect?
All I wanted Glassmaps to be from the very beginning was something organic. Everything on the radio feels so digital and plastic, it all sounds the same, it’s all a vibe kill. I miss guitars and their solos, vocals that aren’t auto tuned.
Finally, have you got anything to share regarding upcoming gigs and what have you got planned for the rest of 2017?
Glassmaps will be playing the sold out Hyde park show with the Killers and Tears For Fears on July 8th. We will be playing other shows and releasing our debut LP later this year through our newly signed record label Lost in the manor. We are very excited and look forward to an awesome year ahead!
We would like to thank Joel of Glassmaps very much for his time! Below you can listen to ‘Summer Rain’ which is taken from his forthcoming debut album ‘Strangely Addicted’ which is set for release later this year.