I always admire an artist who really works it hard and makes the most of what’s out there. London based Gloucestershire lad Chris Pidsley has recently released quite the tune with Alex’s House. Chris has described how he took full advantage of the myriad of gig opportunities and venues in the big smoke, and since lockdown he has released a shedload of songs and is slowly building up a loyal following. To tell the story, in 2020, Chris’ Spotify end of year tally told of just over 3,000 plays. March 2021 shows towards 700 listeners in a month, so there’s a right well-deserved progress going on.
Chris is generally more known for quieter, reflective and thoughtful songs which fans of the likes of Cavetown’s older brother, Bon Ivor or Rex Orange County might adore. There’s an awesome vocal range on these tracks. Here with single Alex’s House, it feels as though Chris is inspired musically by the Vaccines first album, or perhaps the likes of Busted, early 5SOS and McFly.
The song reflects back to Chris’ first move to the big smoke and staying with a friend until he found his feet.
As someone who also made a move from a small provincial town to (ahem) a larger provincial town and still got my head blown, I was interested in Chris’ experience of London, and that contrast to the quiet life. He told me:
I moved to London for work actually but being here around so many talented musicians and amazing artistic opportunities its been incredible. It is definitely a contrast to Gloucestershire but since this lockdown I haven’t been there in almost a year so definitely missing it!
I adore the lyrics on Alex’s House, as they have that conflicting mix of feeling a bit guilty: “I told you it was for the weekend, but now I’m living with your best friend”, then moving to that youthful confidence that everything is gonna be OK. Coming from towards the other end of the age, I like to try to keep that “don’t stress it” element into my life, which once came natural. The very cute thing about the lyrics, which comes through on the lyric video, are that the letters of the word Alex fit into each of the first words on each line of the chorus. Not only is it a solid tune, it’s clever too.
Given the upbeat change in tempo, I thought I’d ask Chris about how the song came together. Chris told me:
“I think with this song the main guitar melody came first. I’d been listening to a lot of pop-punk at the time, and I suppose that might have influenced it!
After I wrote the guitar melody I thought it was such a fun upbeat sound it needed a full band behind it with a nice driving beat throughout. I’d never really tried doing that kind of sound so I thought I’d give it a go”.
I also wanted to know what the future held for Chris, given the enthaustic response to the new vibe. Chris clearly has a very wise head:
“I feel like I don’t want to limit myself too much to any one sound really. I’m still very much finding my sound and I just want to have fun with whatever musical idea comes my way. I’m more at home in the softer acoustic side of things but that isn’t to say you can’t expect a more electric guitar driven song on my upcoming debut EP”.
Alex’s House is one of those little bouncy gems that earworms its way in. A day or two after listening, it’s that tune where you are scrambling back through your history and your memory bank to find again. Save the trouble and save it on first play.
* Images taken from Chris’ social media.