The band Paper Tongues are going to be superstars. That’s a bold statement to open up with, but I have no doubt that it will soon become fact. This seven piece electro rock band from Charlotte, North Carolina has created a juggernaut of a debut album. Their self titled release is a genre bending ten song opus that effortlessly fuses together hip-hop beats and rock n roll melodies into an instantly likeable new favorite album.
Their song “Soul” was posted on the bands Myspace account four years ago. “Myspace is the reason that Paper Tongues exists today and how we got signed,” says lead vocalist Aswan North. A chance encounter with superstar producer and American Idol judge Randy Jackson would change everything. Aswan wrote down his bands Myspace music address and handed it to Jackson at a trendy LA restaurant. Jackson called the band two weeks later raving about the music. He began coaching them and to this day is the band’s manager chatting with them on a daily basis.
Aswan explains where the band’s sound originated. “If you listen to our record, every song is coming at you from a whole different angle; it’s a very different record. There are seven of us in the band, so there’s all these different vibes, lifestyles and different genres influencing the record.” Aswan is an extremely energetic and outspoken singer but very humble at the same time. “We were in a small town in the Midwest and heard “Ride to California” between Nirvana and Metallica. I’m not sure we belong there, but we were very thankful and grateful.” He goes on to tell me about how he discovered legendary arena rock band Journey a bit late. “I was raised on country, hip-hop and R&B; I did not get to hear Journey until around 2001 and then could not stop listening to it. “
Missing out on the sounds of Steve Perry and crew is looking like a positive thing for Aswan. His vocal abilities are tremendous as he justifiably transitions from AC/DC like rock screams to smooth vocal croons. He almost makes it a one man show but then his 6 band members put together a wall of sound that back his versatility perfectly.
Standout tracks on the album are “Soul”, “Get Higher”, “Trinity” and the infectious and electrifying “Ride To California.” “Ride” is the kind of song you hear one time and immediately hit repeat. A song that resonates and will surely fire up the charts as a perfect end of summer anthem.
When asked about the band’s favorite show so far this year, guitarist Devin Forbes responds, “We played with Muse at the Hard Rock in Vegas (along with Cage The Elephant). I always tell people if there is any one show that sticks out as the favorite, it was the be all end all of shows for me, amazing.”
So what’s on the horizon for the band? A Remix of “Ride to California” from Black Eyed Peas frontman Will.I.Am. and 18 more months of touring. As for the next album, “We have 15 songs ready for record two and 8 songs ready for record three” Aswan excitedly announces.