“Life means moving forward. We evolve every day in our lives. But while we’re constantly changing, sometimes our surroundings cannot keep up and relationships come to an end – while others remain and grow. The only thing that keeps our heads above the water during these constant changes, is to realise who you are and always be true to yourself. Sometimes we have to let ideas and people go in order not to lose ourselves. Because we are the most important ones we have.” – Jan Brendel, OF COLOURS
Evolution is a factor that is conjured every time a band is coming up with a new release, even if you have to look for it with a microscope. For OF COLOURS, nevertheless, this appears to be entirely different: The radically new created self is not only hearable in every note, the unwillingness to compromise and to follow nothing but their own goals, is also clearly visible in the appearance of the band. Already their first album ‘Entelechy’ (2018, Redfield Records) made the technical abilities and ambitions of OF COLOURS clear but they hadn’t found their core, yet – emotionally and regarding the things they want to say. Therefore, the band around singer Jan Brendel and guitarist Alex Rizopoulos, who has now taken over the clean vocals as well, had to experience a whole more life and formulate completely new standards for their art.
The new songs ‘Brand New Past’ and ‘Fearless’ as well as the rest of the new material, that will altogether result in an album in 2022, aren’t just about technical perfection any longer but more about musical contrasts and an increased range of styles. In addition, OF COLOURS stopped beating around the bush with the things they like to say but address them quite clearly, while this corresponds with their temper anyway – a big heart and a big mouth. “We’re definitely going to kick your ass”, Alex states. “But we’re easily able to do the opposite as well. We’re done with thinking inside those genre boxes and we will keep on leaving those more and more behind. Fuck thinking in those categories, in matters of music but socially as well. This is only creating barriers in your head that hold you back from doing the things you’re capable of and that you actually want to do.”
But it’s not only the rearrangement of tasks and the in- or outflow of members that has changed the face of OF COLOURS. With the new material Jan is processing his transgender identity. Behind him lies – without question – the most intensive, draining time of his life at which very end awaits a ground-breaking realization: “We are so much more than the identity that our environment is inflicting on us and the expectations that come along with it. Finding out all that was the best thing that could ever happen to me and the act of liberation that really saved me.”
Both songs, ‘Brand New Past’ and ‘Fearless’, are an act of liberation indeed. “As different as they sound, they are united by their relentless message”, Jan explains. “In the course of our life we’re confronted with many expectations, that keep on pushing us in certain directions and want to make us supress our personalities or feelings. The songs are explicitly about breaking free from these outside expectations. They’re about remembering your own feelings and relearning to interpret your own emotions. From there, it’s possible again to make decisions that may seem unremorseful from the outside, but which are essential for your own survival.”
With the new songs OF COLOURS are pretty hard on themselves: Uncomfortable, unavoidable but at the same time they’re healing and nothing is left unsaid. Every fight is fought until the very end. This is the only way people can grow and generate the strength, to overcome with everything that is raining down on them each and every day. Jan summarizes OF COLOURS’ new standard: “Normalize change, normalize rethinking, normalize suddenly changing your opinion or where you want to go. Be open-minded and fucking listen! Life is difficult in so many ways, don‘t let yourself be overwhelmed by things you don’t feel or don’t want. Just because things have always been in one or the other way does not mean you have to struggle with them forever."