WorldArts has chosen The Upset Victory as our Spotlight Artist of the Month! Playing festivals and landing hits on TV is all in a day’s work for these hardworking Cincinnati natives. After successfully mining Kickstarter, this “Fearsome Fivesome” is putting the finishing touches on their most ambitious album to date! Once you hear their epic sound, you’ll see The Upset Victory is no bracket-busting fluke. Check out our exclusive Q&A with the band!
1.) Tell us about the music scene in Cincinnati and how that influences your sound?
The entire band comes from a variety of musical backgrounds. We all grew up with family members who were musically inclined – so it’s certainly a part of our DNA. We all more or less came up out of the “rock” and/or “punk” scene in the early 2000’s. So we got our feet wet so to speak with that genre and “scene”. From there we, all perfected our musical abilities and found our way through several musical projects. When those projects disbanded we all came together out of the ashes of those previous bands. The initial contact was Stephen and Frank having a phone call about starting a new project.
We feel that the Cincy music scene has evolved drastically over the years in a lot of great ways and as a result it’s certainly inspired us to push ourselves in new directions and musical territories we may not have explored in the past. As a result, this has shaped our sound today.
2.) How did you find out about WorldArts?
We received an insider tip via email and from there started to discover the platform further. The rest is history!
3.) What kind of opportunities would you like to see to help the career of aspiring musicians?
More platforms like WorldArts would definitely help. I think allowing emerging artists the guidance and exposure these types of platforms provide is key to growth. Paving the way for new opportunities to present themselves that in years past may not have been readily available is huge.
4.) If you could go open up for any artist on tour right now who would it be and why?
From a modern standpoint, Imagine Dragons is doing a really great job right now, as is AWOL Nation, with presenting creative and original music along with real instrumentation live. Energetic, fun, and true to form performances is highly respectable in today’s market. So those two bands would be probably pretty fun to tour with.
5.) You successfully used Kickstarter to get your album made. What’s the key to a successful crowdfunding promotion?
Just that – promotion. Promotion was easily the most important thing for us. We took a lot of time developing a promotional strategy i.e. whom to reach out to prior to launching the campaign, getting supporters interested and involved early on prior to even laughing the Kickstarter campaign itself, developing the campaign timeline, constructing a professional and digestible Kickstarter page, etc. All those along with a savvy but diligent work ethic provided us with the keys to success. Being realistic about your goal as well is another important thing to consider. Yes, we raised almost 18k, however, after taxes, lodging, food, gas, recording costs, master, mixing, etc. we still had to cover other expenses out of pocket – the rest of the mastering, photography, album artwork, duplicaiton, promotion, etc.
6.) What can you tell us about the new album?
Easily our most ambitious work to date. We spent a solid year solely honing in our song-writing and treated it as a craft. We even took a separate trip from the recording trip to further hone in on this batch of songs. I think that attention to detail along with the fact we didn’t hold back creatively will make this our best work to date. Any kind of strange instrumentation, arrangement, or production idea was placed on the table. We tried to keep a very open mind because sometimes you may miss a really great idea if you’re too focused on “no” rather than “maybe” or “yes”.
For those familiar with our most recent release ‘Wall Street’, I’d say it’s in the same ballpark or family as that release but we definitely delved into entirely new territory for the band too. It’s not a repeat or rehashing of the last EP. We always try and do something different with each release and we feel we succeeded on that front.
7.) For our readers who have never heard your music, explain your sound in 5 words: Catchy. Epic. Cinematic. Sincere. Fun.
8.) Do you perform in public? Describe those occasions? Concerts, radio, TV?
Yes, all the above. We’ve done several radio acoustic performances. We headlined The Madison Theater a year or so back as part of our 8 year anniversary show and our music video for “Fake This,” was featured on VEVO Rock Playlist and hit over 8,500 outlets throughout the country via Pulse Records. “Sellin’ My Soul” landed on the NFL Network, NFL AM, and ESPN, while the band claimed features in Relix Magazine and Papercut Magazine, along with performances at the Bunbury Music Festival (alongside fun., MGMT, The National) and the 2014 Cincinnati Entertainment Awards. We then returned to the 2014 Bunbury Music Festival again playing in company with the likes of Fall Out Boy, Paramore, and The Flaming Lips.
9.) WorldArts is all about giving tools and opportunities to artists…what advice do you have for up and comers?
Keep at it. Sounds simple but it’s so true. If you’re looking for immediate results then this may not be the best path for you. Staying the course is key. Eventually with great music and a hard work ethic people will gradually start to take notice and opportunities will present themselves.
10.) What’s next for The Upset Victory?
We’re currently planning our album cycle and post-production is complete on our first full-length album having successfully funded it via our supporters on Kickstarter. We have an album release date tentatively for the end of August as well as a CD Release show planned in our hometown at the end of August too. So please be sure to follow us on Facebook (Facebook.com/theupsetvictoryofficial) or twitter @theupsetvictory to stay up to date on all things TUV. Thank you!