Miles Recommends: On Dissecting Social Norms, Activism and 'You're Never Alone'.

Lou Cadell and Des Atkinson combine forces to bring us Miles Recommends; an alt-rock duo vocalising their views on society, dissecting the worlds problems. This is music to my ears and i’m sure numerous others; being at a point in time with so many issues, as Lou proclaims “…climate change, the growing global disparity between the rich and poor, the weakening of democratic institutions, mass pollution – it’s overwhelming!” Changes need to be actioned and it is now more than ever that our voices need to be heard.

Miles Recommends are taking one for the team, projecting necessary activism through their new single ‘You’re Never Alone’. Providing support to not only each other but to everyone, reminding us to be there for our community.

Not limiting themselves to one genre, but instead fusing favoured sounds together to create their own unique Indie pop rock tracks. Plenty is in store for Miles Recommends, with the marco issues keeping Lou and Des’ hands full, be sure to stay tuned for more sweet harmonies tackling social norms with their next single Keep It Warm.

This is such an important read, addressing current issues worldwide. Please support Miles Recommends who are doing super significant things with their music. To stay up to date, all media links are below the Q&A, but one in particular to be seen is the content behind the inspiration for their music aka Miles Reads (shared content such as books, articles, videos, music and quotes).

Big hello to Miles Recommends, how are you going?
Hello - very well thank you!

For those who haven’t heard of you can you please give a little intro into the band?
Miles Recommends is an alt-rock concept band that exists as an outlet for our social commentary. Around the time the band started I think Katy Perry had the most twitter followers in the world – and although I can’t say we write lyrics anywhere near as profound as Katy Perry - we figured that music is a good vehicle for collating thoughts regarding all things worldly.

Whilst we tend to migrate towards favoured sounds, we also don’t stringently adhere to any particular genre of music. The Miles Recommends band name comes from our old DVD store guy down the road when we were kids. He had a ‘Miles recommends’ section, which contained an eclectic selection of movies, as varied as our sound, and it therefore seemed like a swell band name to have. Plus, we like the idea of a friend recommending you listen to different types of music!

Des you worked for the UN and Lou, a journo; how did you both meet?
We used to catch the same bus and we also shared the same video store!

You’ve just released a quirky politically-charged indie pop rock track ‘You’re Never Alone’. How did this come about?
We were living in Thailand during the last military coup and there was a curfew in place that meant we had to spend a lot more time indoors – but it also meant we wrote a lot of songs! ‘You’re Never Alone’ came about from feeling depressed about a lot of things really… climate change, the growing global disparity between the rich and poor, the weakening of democratic institutions, mass pollution – it’s overwhelming! Yet despite having the weight of the world’s problems on your shoulders, and knowing there’s really no promise for a brighter future, it’s also important to remember that, ‘You’re Never Alone’.

And what significance does the title of this single hold?
I originally wrote the song for Des, who was (and still is) depressed about where things are headed. You’re Never Alone Is that voice that says “I’m overwhelmed too, and though I can’t make it better for you, I am here with you”.

Focusing on social and political activism; voicing your thoughts and reminding those that no matter what, ‘You’re Never Alone’. The lyrics truly convey this, “the world is a crazy place at the moment and it’s hard not to feel disheartened and anxious about what’s happening.” Can you further on this?
There are so many macro issues affecting our everyday lives at the moment and whilst many problems have existed in the world before now, our utter connectedness to everything via TV, news, our phones the internet, specifically social media, and all the rest, can add to the strain. Worse still, it can make you feel powerless to help in any meaningful way, stretching the limits of empathy and leaving many apathetic to a lot of global causes. So, whilst ‘You’re Never Alone’ is a positive message, it’s ultimately not an overly positive song. I’ll admit I don’t know how things are all going to pan out – and I’m not sure things will end happily. But at the end of the day, we can still simply be here for each other. That’s the simple truth of it.

Lou have you sung before or Is this new to you?
I’ve sung in choirs in the past, and I’ve always been a bit of a karaoke bandit, but I’ve never sung in a band before joining Miles Recommends.

This being the first single from your upcoming debut album, Keep It Warm. What can we expect to hear/what else will you be dissecting through your music?  
More dissection of social norms! We are forever inspired by what’s going on around us, by the macro issues that influence and for our societies. Things like pollution, climate change, vested interests, misinformation, global monopolies, the disparity between rich and poor, the tyranny of the masses – these are just some of the things we will be shining a light on. But musically you can expect some sweet harmonies, plenty of guitar licks and our usual mixed-bag brand of musical goodness for your ears.  

The accompanying music video furthers your message. Correct me if I’m wrong but using a projector to quite literally project current issues onto people’s faces, to make them aware. For those unclear, what should we be taking away from this?
The simple premise is that there are so many distractions in our daily lives – but social media surfing has got to be one of the biggest! Everyone’s engrossed in their phones these days and it’s not a harsh statement to assume and say that, by and large, the media that is mostly being viewed is less than constructive or otherwise educational. In the video I am therefore literally trying to get Des and Ken to see beyond their phones - I am trying to highlight the environmental issues, pollution, mass consumption, climate change, etc, - but they really aren’t noticing. Instead they remain mostly engrossed in their screens and food – a statement about tendencies towards greed and ignorance. Towards the end of the video I literally shoot a confetti cannon right into their faces in a last-ditch attempt to get their attention.

Any advice?
Read more books. Ditch your phone for a while. Go for a walk and actually look where you are going!

What’s up next for Miles Recommends?
More recording! Our next Single Keep It Warm is due out later this year and we are getting ready to smash out our first full album for release next year and for lots of gigs! Watch this space!