Interview with South African Indie Alt Rockers The Color Blew – Exploring ‘Discount Hearts’ and beyond…

Interview with South African Indie Alt Rockers The Color Blew – Exploring ‘Discount Hearts’ and beyond…

Rock ‘N’ Load catches up with The Color Blew, one of South Africa’s compelling indie alternative rock bands, as they release their latest single ‘Discount Hearts’ on 5 July. Known for their introspective lyrics and dynamic soundscapes, The Color Blew continues to push boundaries within the music industry. In this exclusive interview, we delve into their journey so far, their creative process, and what listeners can expect from their newest musical offering.

Q: Since your formation in 2014, The Color Blew has established a unique presence in the South African music scene. Could you share with us how the band’s sound and mission have evolved over the years?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): I think our sound has had a natural progression through the years, evolution is important for anyone, and bands are no exception. We write and create about what inspires us and the experiences we share with others. That hasn’t changed from the start at all and will remain the same.

Q: With over 65 years of collective experience among band members, how does this wealth of musical background influence your creative process and collaborations?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): I think it contributes to you understanding what is required from you to operate in a band environment efficiently as a musician. We made mistakes and learnt from those in the past … that allows us to give more to The Color Blew.

Q: ‘Discount Hearts’ is described as embodying your signature authentic energy. How do you maintain this authenticity while also evolving musically with each new release?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): With these new songs I feel we really lifted all those mental restrictions we sometimes place on ourselves as musicians … nothing is held back, with these songs we just let it happen. I am very happy with where we are in our writing and creation life cycle.

Q: Could you take us through the production and recording process of ‘Discount Hearts’? How did you achieve the desired sound and emotional impact for this single?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): Production was very straight forward the song evolved from a jam session as per usual in true TCB style. Marius came up with the bass line and Tim just had the perfect melody that filled the space. Armando’s drums were the cherry on top and I instantly knew this is it a song was born. I tend to not ponder on the lyrics I pick up on the mood and vibe and spit out what it makes me feel as soon and as raw as possible. All our sessions are recorded so it allows us to listen again and polish the rough edges over a couple of weeks. Once happy we decided on the guitar amps, guitars etc to use and we track the drums over the live recordings to maintain the energy. Bass and guitars are then tracked in the big live room before I proceed with Vocals. I maintain I have great musicians in the band so there is no real “fixing” in the mix, I just try and add value and apply common sense transparency to the sound. That’s obviously, in a nutshell.

Q: As a band based in South Africa, how do you perceive the reception of your music on an international scale? Are there specific audiences or markets you hope to reach with ‘Discount Hearts’?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): It can be tough, but we believe our audience will find us we just need to let them know where we are.

Q: Given The Color Blew’s active use of video content and Social Media Channels to immerse fans into your creative process, how has this strategy contributed to reaching new audiences and connecting with potential fans?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): I think it’s an invaluable resource to keep in touch with your fanbase, if utilised correctly it can open doors to independent artist that were only accessible to much bigger bands before.

The Color Blew (Timothy Lotter): Using these platforms we can capture moments that would’ve otherwise been entirely behind the scenes and bring the audience into an unscripted experience that shows all the sides of band and how we do what we do.

Q: What were the primary inspirations behind the lyrical themes and musical direction of your latest single ‘Discount Hearts’ which delves into notions of self-worth and emotional turmoil?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): Most of our songs, especially the new music, are all based on moments. The specific moment that relates to this song is a rush of emotion fuelled by the backbeat and what it made me feel while in the studio with the band playing it. It was dangerous, exciting and sad all at once … it had to be a song and it had to be this song. It was a movie I saw in my head in a split second I saw it flash by and tried to hang on to the words.

Q: Beyond music, The Color Blew has been noted for its meaningful lyrics. How do you balance personal introspection with creating music that resonates universally with listeners?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): I think of myself as a writer and I like to tell stories, not necessarily mine but definitely someone’s, I owe it to the music to give it the lyrical intelligence it deserves … and maybe the tapestry of sound will guide it to the ears of those who need it as much as I or we do … its always real and its never empty. If it becomes that, then I will stop

Q: What can fans anticipate in terms of live performances or tours following the release of ‘Discount Hearts’? Are there any venues or festivals you’re particularly excited about?

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): We are super busy with content and focused on creating as much art as possible, this whole process we want to share with you. There is a place for shows and our mantra is simple – Book us and we will come!

Q: Looking ahead, what are the band’s aspirations for the remainder of 2024 and beyond? Are there any new projects or collaborations on the horizon?

The Color Blew (Timothy Lotter): We will be releasing a music video for our most recent single ‘Discount Hearts’ and expect to release two more singles before the year is out!

The Color Blew (Liaan Horton): There might be a collaboration or two soon … let’s see if it works out.

We would like to extend our gratitude to The Color Blew for sharing insights into their creative process and their upcoming single ‘Discount Hearts’. For those eager to experience their latest work, be sure to follow The Color Blew online and stream ‘Discount Hearts’ available on all platforms from Friday 5 July


For more information, follow The Color Blew on their social media platforms:








The Color Blew Bio

Liaan Horton (Vocals & Rhythm Guitar)

Marius Cronje (Bass Guitar)

Timothy Lotter (Lead Guitar)

Armando Santos (Drums)

In the realm of Indie Alternative Rock, The Color Blew stands as a deep and perceptive presence, proudly positioned amidst a sea of commercially driven music that tends to be overproduced. Their sonic landscape serves as a refreshing alternative, where talent and passion seamlessly intertwine with depth and meaning – a sanctuary free from the constraints of conventional musical expectations. Discerning audiences often find themselves immersed in moments of profound listening, captivated by the artful sound and impassioned performances, blissfully oblivious to the world around them.

Since their inception in 2014, The Color Blew has been a stalwart presence in the South African music scene, boasting a collective band experience exceeding 65 years. The quartet comprises Liaan Horton, the soulful voice and rhythmic prowess behind the microphone; Marius Cronje, laying down the foundation on bass guitar; Timothy James Lotter, weaving intricate melodies on lead guitar; and Armando Santos, the heartbeat of the ensemble on drums.

Hailing from the East Rand of Gauteng, South Africa, The Color Blew finds their creative sanctuary in Springs, where they diligently craft, record, and produce their music in their private studio. Their commitment to excellence is unwavering, whether in the studio or under the spotlight, embodying consummate professionalism on every occasion.

Attempting to pigeonhole their sound into a single sub-genre of Rock would be akin to restricting a painter to a single-color palette. Broadly categorized as Alternative Rock, their music transcends boundaries, drawing heavily from the raw energy of Grunge and Punk, as showcased in their debut album ‘The Canvas.’ The evolution of their sonic palette is evident in their newer releases, where the vibrant hues of Jazz and African beats converge with meaningful lyrics, exemplified in their sophomore album ‘Light Switch.’

In 2022, The Color Blew paid homage to the legendary Queen and David Bowie with their rendition of ‘Under Pressure,’ earning a place on the SA Top 40 and various international indie charts. The subsequent year saw the release of ‘Love in Space’, a musical odyssey that propelled them to new heights, securing chart positions with both local and international radio stations. This success underscored the band’s versatility, demonstrating their mastery across a spectrum of genres.

As the calendar turns to 2024, The Color Blew stands on the cusp of a new musical chapter, eagerly anticipating the release of fresh compositions that continue to define their brand of Indie Alternative Rock. On Friday 5 July the new single ‘Discount Hearts’ will be released.

With unwavering passion and a commitment to pushing the boundaries of South African music, The Color Blew remains a dynamic force, etching an indelible mark on the ever-expanding canvas of their musical journey.