Big Kizz is the new Swedish rock band featuring drummer Axel Sjöberg (ex-Graveyard), bassist Johannes Cronquist (Vidunderand) and vocalist/guitarist Pontus Westman (Lady Banana). The group recently release its debut full-length, Music is Magic, on May 18via Tee Pee Records.
Big Kizz plays good time rock ‘n’ roll energised with elements of power pop, garage rock and punk that will have toes tappin’, ears ringin’ and mouths singin’ from the moment the needle hits the wax! Big Kizz burst onto the scene in 2017 with its debut, Eye on You, an EP filled with upbeat rock ‘n’ roll circa 1976, when proto-glam and punk rock were hardly distinguishable from each other.
Combining a love for British guitar pop songcraft with crunching power chords and a tongue-in-cheek flair for the absurd, the band’s impending long-player, Music is Magic, is an explosive fusion of Beatlesque melodic hooks, Who-styled power, and a twisted sense of humour. Lyrical content deals with universal themes such as unrequited love and – of course – stickin’ it to the man; something we can all get behind.
We asked the band about the 3 records that have influenced them the most in their musical career, and Axel, Johannes and Pontus each came up with one great choice.
The Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
I think I was about six years old when I got a Walkman cassette player from my parents, which made me go through my parents old cassettes. Among all those cassettes I found this album that blew my mind from the very start, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club Band by The Beatles. A classic album and for some maybe just one of many great albums but for a young child, and I can only speak for my self, it was a break through in exploring music. All the weird sound effects made me create this imaginary landscape and I made up stories of what the songs were all about.
All the joy and happiness I found in this album as a child shaped my view on music. I used to listen to it over and over again when we where out on road trips and I never seemed to get tired of it. I became a fan from the start. I didn’t even dare to tell my friends that I was
listening to The Beatles because it wasn’t cool enough. It’s funny that this album still amaze me today and still affect me in a similar way as it did 23 years ago. As a bass player I can’t help referring to Paul McCartneys bass playing when I create music. He showed me a whole world when it comes to playing bass.
Betty Davis – They Say I’m different
I love this record because I can really feel that she didn’t give a fuck about what others would think and followed her vision. At least that’s what I imagine she did and thought. It’s raw, unforgiving and uncompromising. I love that about music. The opening line to ‘He Was A Big Freak’ says it all. “He was a big freak. I used to whip him with my turquoise chain.” It takes guts to put out music like that. And the musicians are awesome. And it’s one hell of a dance party. This record has it all. If I had the guts, I’d say that the first time I heard the album it left me a bit scared and horny. Sort of like the first time you hear and understand The Stooges. But I’m not sure I have the guts to say that. So I won’t. Maybe. Or? Anyway, I just heard that a film about Betty’s life just was released and it’s supposed to be really good. She disappeared at the end of the 70’s early 80’s after being treated bad by both labels, press and radio. What exactly happened is a bit unclear, but I think this film tries to understand that. I love Betty Davis. Check out all of her albums if you haven’t!
Roky Erickson & The Explosives – Casting the Runes
I spent a year living in small town in Sweden called Västervik. They actually had a record store, and I found it for about 5 Euros! We were at that time living 5 guys together, and I played this record on repeat. I guess all were getting a bit annoyed by it, except my friend Jens who also loved it. Jens and I later started Lady Banana, and I gave the record to him when he got married. (I have another copy now, and I had to pay fucking 35 Euros for it). Anyway, the sound is awesome!! Raw, but still crisp. The songs are great and Roky sings as a Roman God probably only could have dreamed of singing like. Even I started dreaming of singing like that. Now I don’t, but I still like the record. It’s recorded live in -80 or -81 something. Some songs are from Austin and some from Houston I think. The crowd sounds small, and I would have loved to be there myself.