UK Indie Synth Rock artist C-Beem is back with his newest EP Tales From Tono. ai love music last talked to the artist back in 2020 when he released the single“Angel Hill”. Refers to himself as a “time traveler from the 80s, C-Beem continues to delight listeners with his synth melodies and nostalgic musicality. But now he has added something new to the mix: musical motifs from different regions around the world.
For his newest EP, C-Beem integrates Japanese legends of kappas and Mayorga with his synth riffs to create a magical experience. He recently talked over Zoom about this album and what is all about. Check out what he said about this EP as well as listen to it below!
Who is C-Beem?
Chris Mills is known as C-Beem, a synth indie rock artist from the United Kingdom. He was inspired by the 80s sci-fi movie Blade Runner when creating his artist name. “There’s a speech at the end of it where Roy Batty is dying and he says, “I watched the C-beams glimmer outside the Tannhäuser Gate”. So it sounds kind, it’s a science fiction thing. That’s always stuck with me. ” So he decided to call himself as C-Beems as “C” means “Chris”, his first name, and beems because it sounds something electrical like the keyboard that he mainly uses in his music.
Ever since he was very young, C-Beem has been involved in music. He has also two brothers who are also very musical: one plays the drums and one plays the guitar. C-Beem was more on the keyboard. The brothers came together when C-Beem formed a band while everyone had their own individual musical projects. However, it all ended when the artist entered college as each sibling went their different way. That was an opportunity for C-Beem to be a keyboard player for a band when he was an art student in Liverpool. After that, the artist decided to go on a break from music for some time.
Just recently, C-Beem re-emerged as an artist as he discovered how great it was to create and play around with music once more. “It’s only in recent years, my life circumstances changing that I’ve got back into music quite serious way and I’ve updated all my gear,” the artist told me as he explained when he rediscovered creating music as a solo artist.
The UK artist is inspired by artists from the eighties like Peter Gabriel, New Order, devices, and musical modes like the ultra-box DPA mode, synthesizer-driven sounds, and post-punk. He enjoys the synthesized sounds that were alive in the eighties and incorporates them a lot in his works.
Tales From Tono: C-Beem’s Newest EP
Tales From Tono is C-Beem’s newest EP that has a Japanese musical inspiration entwined in each track. The artist had this to say about the EP’s background:
The previous EP was called “C-beem in the Winter Thicks”, which had a vaguely folk, British kind folk, to it with the violins and some acoustic guitar, you know, as a slight departure from the synth stuff, Then I thought, where can I go from here? Can I make another sort of album that has a legendary feel to it? Then I started to think about Japan, cause it’s a country I’ve always been fascinated by.
It’s based on a Japanese legend, it needed a bit of research. You can’t just go plunging into something like that. We, without knowing what you’re talking about. So I decided to look into it. I looked into the legends and things like kappas and the mayoiga: a kind of Phantom house that appears to lonely travelers and helps kind of spiritually realign them. There are also those Hills, which is about the mountains and the Hills around the village of Tono, where all the legends and these fairy tales kind of exist in a concentrated way. And these Hills are like a no-go place. And I like the idea of that. So there’s a song based on that.
C-Beem’s mission when creating this EP was to make sure that they feel all authentic and I’ve got to get original Japanese instruments. Although he couldn’t afford the professional musicians and Japanese instruments, the artist thought he could emulate it by using synths, just like Peter Gabriel did in the eighties.
There are Japanese sounds, motifs, and melodies, but C-Beem stressed emulating the sound and not trying to be 100% musically authentic. Just to be himself by having fun in the musical process and focusing on how he could bring a Japanese-themed album inspired by Japanese legends to the audience with his synth musicality. He hopes that the listeners can enjoy the magical musical journey!
Make sure to listen to Tales From Tono down below. What is your favorite track? Let me know in the comments!
Make sure to check out C-Beem at the following:
Twitter | Spotify | Soundcloud | Youtube