The Grizzly Growl

Underground Music Update: Armors

Autumn Lucas, Co-Editor in Chief

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(left to right) Sam Beresford (keyboard), Kody Buxton (bass/guitar), Olen Kittlesen (lead singer); Photo Credit: Lhoycel Teope

Armors, or ARMORS, is an unsigned, three-piece band hailing from Southern California. They have been making music for three years now, and have gained a considerable following within the alternative music scene, with a lot of support coming through social media. Sam commented on this saying, “It’s amazing to see one fan discover our music from seeing us live or on Spotify and then methodically spread it to all of their Instagram/Twitter followers. A lot of people who follow us now definitely seem to have originated from a smaller number of people who have made it their mission to spread our music like a wildfire.” This seems to be a growing trend for a lot of artists, with an ever-growing number of fan-run street team accounts popping up on Twitter and other social media platforms.

We love seeing a crowd react to our music whether it’s a headline show for our fans or opening in front of a brand new crowd. Without a crowd reaction it would be just like one of our many rehearsals in an 8×10 room without air conditioning,” Sam Beresford, Armors’ keyboardist, told The Growl when asked his favorite part of a live show. He went onto talk about how excited the band is for their upcoming touring, saying, “It’ll be great to play a longer set for the first portion of the tour to get a bit deeper into our catalog to songs we don’t get to play as often.”

One of Armor’s more popular songs is “Genesis.” The song sounds like a collaboration between Miike Snow and Bastille, mixing the drum machine and voice augmentation of Snow with the switching of melodic and chanting vocals used by Dan Smith. This proves to be a winning combination with Sam saying, “Our song ‘Genesis’ has seemed to stand out as both our favorite to play and a crowd favorite for the last year or so.” It’s understandable why it’s become a fan favorite, given the song’s strong, danceable beat and the fascinating, complex lyrics; this song is truly something unlike the popular music, and even the alternative, that is being played on the radio right now.

When listening to the band’s catalog, you can hear a wide range of sounds and influences present in each song, with a string of familiarity, specifically in the guitar and heartfelt vocals, connecting them all. Beresford told The Growl, “We just approach each new song with fresh perspective and try to make the vocals and instrumentals as good as they can possibly be. Aside from deciding to write a more uptempo or downtempo song at the beginning, we really just try to write and record whatever best fits the vibe of the song.” Armors uses a very collaborative process to create their music, including working with artists from other groups. “We’ve been able to work with so many other inspiring artists that we’ve looked up to and, honestly, never thought we’d have the chance to work with. We’ve been influenced in different ways… depending on their personal strengths. Adam from The Colourist opened our eyes to a multitude of recording techniques we hadn’t really considered before, Jason from Sir Sly is amazing at capturing cool vibes in everything he works on, and working with Sam from Magic Man was the first time we got to try emailing a song back and forth to finish it because he lives on the other side of the country.” Sam went on to say, “Our tastes tend to be pretty eclectic. Lately we’ve been into Electric Guest, THEY., Julia Michaels, Portugal. The Man, and Tame Impala.”

Armors’ most recent single, entitled “Name,” was released earlier this year. The song has some strong hip-hop undertones with a indie hook; creating a darker sound reminiscent of bands such as Sir Sly and The Neighbourhood, while still being something all its own. The lyrics seem to come from a place of loss and confusion, and just generally not knowing where to go within your life. While the song’s lyrics are undoubtedly deep, it still has a great beat and is a truly beautiful and unique piece of music.

This is a band that has been trying to find their way as a band for a long time, and still has goals far exceeding their current popularity and fanbase. Sam, as well as the rest of the band, started making music at a young age, and said, “The best advice I could give is to work as hard as you possibly can and stay persistent. I’ve learned that no one in music has gotten anywhere without putting in their 10,000 hours of work. Even the artists that seem like overnight successes probably aren’t overnight successes and probably had 3 bands that failed before they became successful.”


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Make sure to go see their show with Smoke Season at Kilby Court (748 W Kilby Ct, Salt Lake City, UT 84101) on September 9th! Tickets are only $10!

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Underground Music Update: Armors