It’s been almost a year since we last spoke to Behold the Locus about the release of their debut EP, a self-titled effort that ensured the group were taken more seriously among both their peers and local promoters. They’ve since played numerous gigs around the UAE, created their own shoe for Puma and are about to start work on their second album. We grabbed guitarist and songwriter Fabian Martin (above left) for a long-overdue catch-up.
When we last spoke, you guys were about to release your debut EP… It happened some time around the November last year – we released it independently, then hooked up with Music Master. They’re one of the suppliers for Virgin. We’ve been getting a lot of people adding us on Facebook saying that the bought the CD and didn’t know that we were a local band until they checked us out on Facebook. Only then did they figure that we were based in Dubai. That was kind of a boost for us as well. And one guy we found is a photographer – we invited him for the next show to get some nice pictures. I think the guy’s in high school or something, but he was over the top. He was like, ‘Oh man, I can’t believe I’m going to meet Behold the Locus!’ and we were like ‘Dude, you know…’ [Laughs] He made us feel like stars.
We hear you’re also working with Puma now. Yes, Puma has this Creative Factory, so we contacted them and before you know it we’re sitting down with them discussing a Behold the Locus shoe. We went for a high top because we’re old-school guys.
So are the shoes on shelves around town? They asked if we wanted to take that route, but we’re really not in the business of selling shoes, you know. [Laughs] Our target is to do one good gig every month, so we wear those shoes at every gig. We put it out there and we mention it when we play. If you like them – and us – you can go to Puma and they’ll create a pair for you for around Dhs600. We’re also going to do an acoustic set in the Puma store in The Dubai Mall, although we don’t have a date for it yet.
Have you thought about getting into other areas of fashion? Honestly? Yeah. [Lead vocalist and guitarist] Richard and I are kind of the fashion bosses of the band. So if we get the chance to hook up with any other brands we like, we’d definitely love to get into shirts and jeans and… yeah it’s endless. [Laughs] We kind of shop a lot.
What was the reaction like to your gig at the F1 in Abu Dhabi last year? When we landed, there were probably about 3,000 people out there. We’d taken some Behold the Locus T-shirts with us to sell, but at one point I just decided to start throwing them into the crowd and they mobbed the stage. Security weren’t happy, but it was one of our best experiences.
Can you tell us a bit about the album you’re about to start work on? We just found a producer: a guy called Dillon. He’s South African, a brilliant guy, and he’s going to work with us on a full-length album. This album is going to have more of a club feel to it. The first one, although it turned out to be more electric, was written as more of an acoustic album. The new one is going to be quite a mix, with some indie, reggae and acoustic stuff too.
What else have you got coming up? We’re actually going to be opening for a band coming in from the Philippines at a place called Barakai. We just got off a pretty awesome gig at The Music Room, which was a tribute to Bob Marley. He’s been a big influence on the band.
Though you’re clearly moving in the right direction, are you guys holding onto your days jobs for now? Of course, yeah [laughs]. We still have our day jobs; we’re just doing this as an increasingly serious hobby. Behold the Locus’s self-titled EP is available at Virgin Megastore. For news on the album release, see www.facebook.com/Behold.The.Locus