Moving from Oxford, England, to Arizona proved to be inspirational for Robert Stevenson. In fact, the move was life-altering.
“We were living in England, where it’s gloomy a lot,” he says during a recent interview. “When we moved to Arizona, we were put smack in the middle of the Wild West. The days were hot and we started to see scorpions for the first time.”
Stevenson, who is the lead singer of indie rock outfit A Silent Film, says moving to Arizona was the inspiration for the band’s current album, “Sand & Snow.” The band formed in 2008 and took on the name A Silent Film after Stevenson wrote an entire song using the melodies found in Charlie Chaplin films. The band’s current lineup includes Stevenson, Karl Bareham, Ali Hussain and Spencer Walker.
With A Silent Film and Barcelona
WHEN: 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18
WHERE: Sunshine Theater, 120 W. Central
HOW MUCH: $25 at www.holdmyticket.com or 886-1251
It first toured the United States in 2010 and became fascinated with the country. This sparked the members to move to the United States and make it their permanent home.
“A lot of our love for the country came from the attachment of touring it,” he says. “We had learned about the U.S. through novels, and we were experiencing it firsthand. It was really inspiring.”
When the quartet decided to record “Sand & Snow,” they decided to record at Sonic Ranch in Tornillo, Texas, just south of El Paso.
“This was one of the coolest locations that we found,” he says. “We stayed there for a month or so and just put ourselves into the location. It was really cool because we recorded the album during winter, and driving into the studios seemed like we were driving into a Tim Burton movie. The entire experience just gave us so much inspiration.”
After recording the album and waiting for its release in June, the band toured for a while. Then in September, it got a week’s break and went back to Sonic Ranch. Stevenson says the band headed back there to record live versions of the songs.
“We also were able to have them taped and have been releasing them on YouTube,” he says. “Many of the songs are the same, but we’ve played a bit with the arrangements. It’s just a great way for us to give something special to our fans.”
With “Sand & Snow,” the band has been drawing comparisons to Coldplay and Snow Patrol – and it suits Stevenson just fine.
“In music, you are always going to be compared to others,” he says. “I’m excited that we are put in the same sentence as two of my favorite bands. It’s an honor to even be mentioned with them.”