We’re here to review the fantastic indie quintet from Liverpool, The Baltic States. Originally starting with a collaboration between the electronic compositions of Latvian artist Jev Maligins and captivating vocalist Helen Morrison, they then looked to garner more power and energy for their live shows. Queue the addition of Laura Shea on bass, with percussion and drums both coming from Vadim Sidorov and Slay Janens.
The Baltic States have only recently formed as each member was previously working on other creative projects before all getting together and developing their debut EP, ‘Boxes’ last Autumn. Since then their exposure has exploded and they’ve had a number of impressive appearances including 02 Academy, London’s 100 Club and the Cavern Club. They play around with a lot of genres and ideas and end up creating a unique and catchy sound each time. One recognisable element though is the mood of the songs. They often draw from the high vocal range of Helen with a reverberated and faded effect so there’s an epic and dramatic feel which is transported with the sheer magnitude of everyone’s energy.
Kontrol was the first track we heard from this band and it’s remained our favourite. Though we may have overplayed it in the Clowdy office it still has such a satisfying, heavy bass line. The synth progressions go well with the music video’s crashing water dives. So does the bass with the feeling of deep ocean pressure. The vocals from Helen were what surprised us most as it adds a whole other layer to the song and manages to tie together everything perfectly in a bewitching kind of way.
Track 3 out of 4 on their debut EP, “Boxes” is ‘The Fire’. Possibly the most dreamy soundscape they’ve produced it has a fantastic synth intro which you just want to keep building forever. It’s then beautifully brought to light with a soaring inferno.
We managed to do a quick Q&A with Jev and Laura about their creative process and how they formed the group.
When did the idea to form The Baltic States band begin? Was it a sudden spark of inspiration or a long developing idea?
We all met in the Liverpool music scene and we realised that we all had an interest in creating something new. I think someone said “Take electronica out of the box and make it an acoustic song. Shake well, blend it with Techno/IDM and Indie. Now drink it! Vodka is not necessary”. Performing Live is a huge part, we didn’t want to have just a top liner and dj. The music needed energy which we get from our drummers. They’re like machines! They power through every set with real intensity. We love to play live! We really get into it!
How does the creative process for a new track work among the five of you?
It’s different every time and it’s really hard to describe. We all bring our ideas to the studio and start working on them. When we are on the right track we just feel it with our spines.
How have you grown and nurtured your fanbase?
No idea. We all just love seeing people as enthusiastic about our music as we are!
What are your upcoming plans?
We are currently finishing a new song which is called “Release” and we’re going to play a show in London on 15th of May at 93 Feet East, which promises to be an amazing night!
Also we are heading to Wales for the first time to play Landed Festival on 3rd of May. After that it’s like hitchhiking. Where are we now? Who’s the driver?
Go give them a listen…