60’s Nighclub – Takin Chances and the return of The Levis

It feels a long time ago now, but during those innocent early lockdown days of last summer (back when we fondly thought we were all following the rules and the rulers), I was tracking the solo bedroom exploits of Max Stokes (musical exploits only, dear reader; do get your minds out of the only fans vibe).

The lead vocalist of The Levis, Max created his 60’s Nightclub project to explore the kit he had to hand and to work on mixing and producing some new bouncy light retro tunes.  After a quiet period, following the release of an album’s worth of tracks, it’s brilliant to now hear a new 60’s Nightclub tune, takin chances.    

I had thought we had perhaps sadly seen the last of 60’s Nightclub so I rushed over to my trusty old hotline with the man himself, Max, to find out more.

“After the release of Home last winter there was never really any plan to keep 60’s going. I wanted to get back to writing with the Levis again and we began writing new material. We got a couple of songs together and we were ready for the studio.

Unfortunately covid hit again last winter and that stopped our plans again. After so many setbacks, I took a break from music and just decided to not release anything for a while.

Fast forward to 3 months ago and I was chatting to James Vardy (Private Reg) about his new solo stuff. When we put Home out, we did it on his musical distribution account, and I jokingly suggested we name the label “Private Regcords”.

Now he’s up and running with his solo project he’s put out more tunes under that record label name and convinced me to put out another single again for “the label”.

I had a couple of things in the bag but wanted to save them for the new Levis material. But, I knew I had this ‘takin chances’ tune from when I was doing all the soundcloud stuff. And a lot of people who I showed it too really liked it, so I settled on releasing that”.

(Mr record label Vardy is on the right)

When I spoke with Max, he felt that at its core takin chances is really just a typical 60’s tune and I agree with his thought that it’s a nice representation of the 60’s Nightclub sound he was going for with that project.

I’m even not old enough to remember the 60’s but the 80’s is a different matter, and although it wasn’t all it is now reputed to be, the music was at least good. I do pick up that poppy 1960’s chart appeal to the tunes produced in this project, to my mind takin chances also has enough in its DNA to give a bit of that bouncy 80’s Club Tropicana feel good vibe.

This time rather than thinking about grooving in “the Trop” with George Michael and his pretend-just-for-show girlfriend, this is a bit more homely and relaxed and feels more of a little sneaky slighly spilt after hours Jager or two just with mates, but the nightclub music is still up loud. More honest, more laid back, more good times, and it’s still polished off with some well placed “whoops”.

There’s a real flow to the beat, and I’m looking for my Maracas to join in. The lyrics of the song too appear upbeat and positive. Take a chance and it will all be OK. The tune itself is very in line with previous 60’s Nightclub songs, a nice jangling and bouncy feel good tune.

I think this could be the last hurrah for 60’s Nightclub as Max has some exciting plans on the horizon. I’ll give him the final words:   

Another reason I wanted to release music again is, because despite a lot of set back the Levis have booked in studio time for January and we’re really proud of the direction we’re taking the new songs”.

Chris R

* Images taken from social media images

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