Aaron Keylock ‘Cut Against The Grain’ Track by Track

Aaron Keylock, the renowned teenage guitarist, had the chance to tell us a bit about his debut album Cut Against The Grain, due out January 20th. Having recorded the album in LA with Fabrizio Grossi who has previously worked with Alice Cooper, Dave Navarro, Slash, Ice-T, George Clinton and Zakk Wylde, Keylock’s debut has been put in good hands…

All The Right Moves – This is a song that got pieced together and developed a lot throughout the record. I had the song but I didn’t like the guitar part and I really wanted to go for more of a Rory Gallagher style. Then when I was in L.A. recording the album, we changed arrangements and drum parts around a lot and I’m really happy with it now. It’s an awesome first track!

Down – This is one of my favourite songs on the record. It’s a song that came out when I was experimenting with my writing and listening to some other influences of mine. I think that it’s quite different to other songs on the record because of that. I’ve always liked how the verse has almost a delta feel to it and then the chorus is a driving rocky groove.

Medicine Man – This is the first song that I ever demoed and it’s always meant a lot to me. It’s the song that got me the chance to make a record and play shows with my heroes! It was great to get out to L.A. and give the song a totally new sound and feel to the original demo, which I was really happy with! It was also when I first started to get into people like Nick Drake and I first started experimenting with tunings, which was a big part of the song writing process for me, just finding new sounds that inspire me.

Falling Again – I had this song in the works for a while but we rarely played it live because it never really seemed to work. Once I got out to LA, we tried it and we got a really cool Rolling Stones vibe going with the acoustics rather than the Humble Pie feel that I originally had in mind. I’m really happy with how it came out!

Just One Question – This was the first proper song I wrote that I was truly happy with and it’s been in the live set pretty much ever since! It’s always gone down well and I’ve always loved playing it so it made sense to put it on the record! We added the intro on in the recording process, which was great. It changed the whole vibe from just a 12 bar minor blues song to almost a Led Zeppelin / early Pink Floyd style, which really turned me on and just, made the song fresh.

Against The Grain -To me this song is just a cool, loose rock ‘n roll song! We made it faster on the record than I’ve ever played it live and just went for it and it was pretty much one go straight through.

That’s Not Me – This song started off with the riff and melody idea I had which was a kind of a Faces vibe and then lyrically it was just about being who you are and not letting anyone tell you what to do or what to say really.

Try – This is one of those songs that came together piece by piece. I had the guitar part for a while and always liked the way it sounded and how the vocal melody flowed with the guitar but I didn’t know where else to take it. Then I had the middle 8 and the bridge, and then I was messing around with ideas with the guys and we came up with the chorus and it just fitted perfectly so it’s a song. Lyrically it’s more of a gospel song rather than blues. It’s about things getting better and having hope rather than the whole blues vibe. I’m really proud of because it’s the only ballad I have on the album and it’s the first I’ve written so it’s cool to have it on there!

Spin The Bottle – This song came together really quickly. I was messing around with capo tunings and came up with this Exile on Main Street type riff and the lyrics came to me straight away for it! I had just finished school I believe and just started out doing music professionally and it was just about taking a chance and going for it.

Sun’s Gonna Shine – This is also one of my favourites on the record and one of my favourites to play live too! It’s a jam song which we get to drag out live and play with the rhythms. It’s got the one riff that goes throughout the whole song so it’s basically just a grooving rock n roll track which is just a bunch of musicians having fun playing!

No Matter What The Cost – I wanted to have more of an Americana style song as bands like Little Feat, Allman Brothers, The Band were all huge influences on me. So I wrote this song. Lyrically I had the chorus line ‘the higher the mountain the more the wind blows the harder to get there the more you know’ for a while before I wrote this and it all came together so naturally I’m really happy with everything in this track and it’s a cool way to end the record!

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