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I jump on call with Liverpool singer songwriter Dan Byrne, who we’ve seen in many incarnations over the past few years in music, to chat about his debut EP, the dynamics and differences of solo versus full band, and what’s on the horizon. In our recent chat, Dan peels back the layers of his creative process, whilst revealing the uncertain yet rewarding path that led to his latest release ‘Like Animals’; the focus single on the debut EP ‘Beginnings’ and it is a banger from start to finish; it's a massive rock anthem made for stadiums; a rollicking three minute venture into the new sounds of the Liverpool musician that showcase grit, distortion, and an absolute primal instinct embodied by rolling melodies and an incredible vocal range, proving the power of the frontman. Upon first listen to the track I swear my jaw dropped, quite literally! 

Departing from the constraints of band-life, and the confines of classic rock, Dan now embarks on a solo journey fueled by a desire to break away from tradition and explore new sonic territories. "For me, it was kind of going, 'okay, now there’s no limits, there’s no rules'," Dan reflects with a hint of amusement. "I’ve only ever been in classic rock-style bands, so I wanted to do something pretty modern. I wanted to put synths in there, and strings, and all weird things I wouldn’t normally do, and I was like, 'no one’s stopping me from doing that'."

The journey towards 'Like Animals' and the debut EP ‘Beginnings’ was anything but straightforward. "That was a long twelve months," he laughs, reminiscing about the period of self-discovery and experimentation. "I had left my previous band around 7 to 12 months prior. I had always written the songs and I had always written for that project so it was classic rock, hard rock, that kind of idea. Then I went, 'look, let’s just take a step back.' I didn’t want to give myself any rules; I wanted to create something new and fresh."

Navigating through a sea of emotions and introspection, Dan poured his heart and soul into the four tracks that emerged from this transformative period. "I’m a very emotional person," he admits, "and the four tracks on there and the ones I'm continuing to write are basically me trying to find a voice for me to channel what I feel. Sometimes people can write about any old crap, and I envy that, because I wish I could just choose a subject and do that."

His songwriting process serves as a cathartic outlet, a means of grappling with the complexities of his own emotions. "Most of my thoughts and opinions are very strong emotions, and sometimes I don't fully comprehend them myself, so I think writing about that is the best way of doing it."

Despite the challenges, Dan remains steadfast in his pursuit of artistic expression. "A key thing for me, in terms of my music, and also growing as a person, is to actually find what I want to talk about as that has always been quite a challenge for me," he reflects.

Looking ahead, Dan sets his sights on a new milestone: the release of a full-length album. "Realistically, I'd love to have an album out by the end of the year so obviously that means I need to write another 12 songs that I’m happy with and everyone else is happy with, it basically just means I've just got to work hard. Luckily, I'm in a position where I've got a lot of people dealing with the other stuff I'd usually have to deal with."

Reflecting on his journey so far, Dan expresses gratitude for the opportunities and collaborations that have shaped his career. From sharing the stage with legends like Myke Gray: “I've played some of the biggest stages of my life with him. We headlined Stonedead Festival last year and that was one of the biggest show I've ever played and it was amazing!” To finding camaraderie with his current bandmates; “I share the stage with Colin, Glen and Max, they've all been in huge bands - Inglorious, TigerTailz, Kira Mac etc, the fact that they want to play music with me is beyond me. They could be doing something else with anyone else so the fact they want to spend time in a rehearsal space, that means more to me than anything else in the world,” Dan remains humbled by the support he's received.

"I've only been playing music professionally for about four years now, so a lot happened in a very short amount of time," he muses. “That's why - I don't know how I've ended up at this point, from going to playing to one man and his dog in Liverpool to then being on a huge stage at Stonedead or Steelhouse - so whatever's happening, I'm just going to keep my head down and just write some songs”

As Dan prepares to take the stage once again, with an upcoming tour with Oli Brown & the Dead Collective, he embraces the unknown with a sense of anticipation. He continues  "It was - it was very quick," he acknowledges. "I don't know what the catalyst was... A year before covid I joined Revival Black, this new band to me. I had played with them in the past with my old band in the Liverpool scene. There were a lot of opportunities, a lot of festivals, and a lot of fans,” he emphasises, “that’s a thing I’d never experienced before. Y'know hearing ‘will you sign this?’ and people following five different shows on a tour - I was thinking ‘this is wild’.”

With 'Like Animals' and the EP ‘Beginnings’ serving as a testament to his resilience and creativity, Dan continues to push the boundaries of his craft, leaving a powerful mark on the rock music landscape. As he embarks on the next chapter of his musical journey, one thing remains certain: the best is yet to come.

Stream 'Beginnings' here

Keep up to date on all things from Dan Byrne through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Words: Tate Powell (@tatepowellx)


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