Noisywaters: Organic electronic
by KEENAN KETZNER
Bellingham has become more and more known for its advanced takes on electronic music in the last few years, and the project Noisywaters is no deviation. The duo, songwriter Benza Maman and visual artist Will Barrett, have etched out a niche with their self-proclaimed “juicy future club music,” and are only continuing to push their music further.
Their story is the common two high school friends kind of story. They met without much happening at first, but after a period apart with Benza in LA for a few years, they reconnected. Friends arranged for them to to live in the same house, and their musical chemistry came to be.
“We found for different reasons, we ended up in Bellingham with some of our high schools friends…” Benza said. “And we just started jamming, and Will whipped out his harp and songs started getting written.”
You can hear their expansive musical journeys conveyed in their own sound. Benza was an EDM producer for years while in LA before trying out songwriting, while Will also played many instruments throughout bands in middle and high school. The way that they combine these influences is part of what makes their music so interesting, and allows them to have such a unique approach to songwriting.s
Benza stated, “There’s no specific process for writing the songs… A lot of them come out of jams… Sometimes it’s something one of us wrote. Sometimes our song comes from just an idea that happened in another song, or a jam…. I think it’s really important because when we play live, we want to have the ability to improvise and change things up.”
Will added that they’re trying to tell a story, and also trying to convey imagery through the music.
When it comes to live shows, the two do not slack either. Making frequent use of improvisation to keep their songs fresh, they also create transitions between songs that are special to that specific live performance. To top it all off, they have a floating multimedia light show that attracts the eye and lulls the viewer into another dimension with the band. Thanks to Ableton and their knack to also push themselves, no two shows are the same, and almost all done without backing tracks.
As of 2017, the duo released the organic and very danceable album VERANO, which was met with Praise and offers for live performances, but the two continue mercilessly to work on their brand. There will be more music very soon, and Will said “We’ve been writing a lot of songs,” almost sounding afraid by their own prolific nature. But, for all of us fans of good music, scared is one thing we’re not. You can follow them on Facebook for performance dates, and you can listen to their album on Spotify.
Catch Noisywaters at Paint Bham Blue for WWU at Depot Market Place on Sept. 27 and online at facebook.com/wenoisywaters.