[EXCLUSIVE STREAM] Listen To Joshua Winstead’s Solo Debut, ‘MMXX’

Photo by Anton Lombardi

You got to believe that love can set you free, baby
You got to believe in love

Today, we’re excited to share an exclusive stream of Joshua Winstead’s solo debut, MMXX. You can listen to the full album below.

MMXX is an impressive, soulful solo debut for Winstead, who plays bass for the critically-lauded Metric. “One Heart,” “Beautiful Prison,” and “Games” highlight what is obvious: the 11 songs on MMXX are rich and powerful. It will be available to purchase here on June 3rd.

Listen to MMXX below after you read our interview with Josh.

First — you have a great voice. How long have you been singing? And who are your favorite singers and songwriters?

First — Thank you for the compliment.  I have been singing all of my life or at least as long as I can remember.   My family is quite musical and singing was part of my upbringing. I actually think having a good voice starts with the confidence it takes to sing. Most people can sing, very few people are actually “tone deaf”.  Most people aren’t comfortable singing in front of other people and that tension can be heard.  It is understandable though singing is a very personal art form, you are literally vibrating your body for others to hear.  You become the song.

Because there have been many great singers, my list could go on for quite a long time. So here is a short list, as quickly as I can think of them, and in no particular order.

Sam Cooke
Nina Simone
Lauryn Hill
John Lee Hooker
Frank Ocean
Leslie Feist
James Blake
Chan Marshall
David Bowie
Marvin Gaye
Michael Kiwanuka

There is a political component, as you have mentioned, to this album, and, frankly, I love it. What were you thinking about when writing these songs? 

I’m glad you like the political side of the album.  My lyrical thought process tends to revolve around certain points of interest, such as human rights, love, equality and our own attitudes towards these subjects. But I try to include them in stories, I want to shy away from being preachy and stay more to the reflective side.  I understand why and how people can get lost in things like greed, fame, and ego, I’m not perfect and don’t claim to be.  But I do feel like I have an worked on and continue to work on being the best person I can be.  I only want to inspire others to try and do the same.  I was also thinking that my first album needs to concise and in tune with personal beliefs and later I can explore more topics lyrically.

I have read that Metric often likes to take time off between albums/tours (ie, for each band member to have time to reflect). How and when did these songs start to form? Did you talk to Jimmy, Emily, and Joules at all while you were getting ready to record?

The beginnings how and when for each song really depends on which song. Some songs “The Streets” for example is one of the oldest songs written quite a while ago while “A Poison Cup” was written after I considered the album finished.  Music is a nonstop process for me, songs are constantly gestating.  This album isn’t even released and I’m already working on new music.

I definitely talked to Emily, Jimmy and Joules while I was writing and recording. We were all together, some of the recordings were done while we were on tour.  Joules plays on the album, and I did some tracking at our studio in Toronto.  We weren’t necessarily discussing the music itself, but we were always in contact.

Listen to MMXX

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