"I write pop songs."
Paul Layton, lounges back in his retro white upholstered
chair, sipping on a giant cup of tea as the wind whistles
through a crack in the window of his hilltop home.
"Timeless creative pop songs with good rhythm,"
he adds, and his sister Laura chimes in, "paired
up with good danceable beats." Their new album,
Grand Design, embraces the limitations the
duo imposed upon themselves producing in their apartment
studio, along with the overproduced 70s adult-contemporary
influence (think Yellow or ABBA) that Paul loves.
Layton is their last name, and the name of their
band, formed two years ago when big brother and little
sister decided to focus after 8 years of on and off
making music together. We got the chance to chat with
the duo, just click below to watch and listen in!
Watch our Layton video
A little history... They didn't start out as best
friends or child musical prodigies. Both were forced
to take piano lessons as kids, but it was Laura who
took it up again in High School, as well as formal
vocal training (she even teaches piano now herself!).
Paul took a handful of guitar lessons around the same
time, but taught himself bass, drums and piano and
"had a really cool high school band," says
Laura. "Then one day he asked me to sing in it."
Born one and half years apart, the two claim that
Layton was the only real choice for a name for their
band, "the only one we knew we wouldn't wake
up a year later and be sick of it."
Paul is the mastermind, writing all the music and
the majority of the lyrics, though Laura has written
one song for their next album. But their creative
process is integrated from start to finish, including
their live performances. They recently completed a
mini tour up north that encompassed four other musicians
to play a true organic live show. "It's madness
with that many people though," says Paul. "Especially
when they are all your friends doing it for free!"
For their upcoming shows, the duo is pairing down
on the numbers, but upping the ante on the productions.
Jokes Paul, "we're replacing them with robots
and mannequins. There will be movies, art, fashion...
Up next for Layton? Their latest single, "Hope's
All There Is (Sugar)" gets beaten into a delightful
concoction in multiple flavors with three remixes
by Static Revenger. All are available worldwide on
D-Dub Records through Beatport.com right now.
-- words & video by Jennifer Warner
STATIC REVENGER PRESENTS LAYTON "HOPE
IS ALL THERE IS" REMIXES (D-DUB)
Sugar is sweeter when it's flavored with a little
SR... Static Revenger that is. On this batch of his
remixes, SR lends his masterly touch to the retro
70s meets modern day band Layton. You couldn't dream
up a better match, with SR's background in twisting
classic rock songs and samples into massive hits -
like when his "Sexy" loops the hook from
the Kinks "All Day And All Of The Night, watch
out for the dancefloor explosion! If you are looking
for impeccable produced smooth electronic music, look
elsewhere. If you get turned on by the raw energy
of Felix da Housecat or a Fatboy Slim set, from distorted
synths to barefoot imperfection, you'll be loving
these remixes. The first on the CD singles is the
Static Revenger Vocal Mix, which shares much with
the second track, his Dub Mix. Both are lush and damn
catchy with Laura Layton's vocals singing out "Sugar..."
over and over till you'll be asking for another spoonful
whether you want it or not. The third remix, Shugga
Rockerz Mix, doesn't add anything that the first two
or the original LP version (track four) don't already
cover more palatably, and if you're downloading your
copy from beatport, I'd save that $1.29 for another
tasty D-Dub release or one of the other delicious
"Hope Is All There Is" remixes.