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  • Interview: V Factory

    Tue, 01 Sep 2009 08:36:40

    Interview: V Factory - V Factory's Asher Book discusses his band's forthcoming debut, how his role in <i>Fame</i> felt close to home and the ultimate balancing act in this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com

    V Factory know how to make a hook.

    Just listen to their first single "Love Struck;" it's pure aural ecstasy. Combining infectious choruses and buoyant beats with airtight dance moves and hypnotic performances, it's not going to be long before V-Factory have infiltrated the hearts of soon-to-be-screaming girls worldwide. Pop needed some new kings, and V-Factory are more than happy to vie for the thrown that's been long vacated since the boy-bands all became man-bands.

    As part of their journey to the top, V-Factory's Asher Book even has a starring spot in the highly anticipated remake of Fame. His scene stealing turn will most likely seal the deal with teen girls everywhere, and he'll soon be their favorite heartthrob overnight.

    Asher sat down with ARTISTdirect.com for this exclusive interview about V-Factory's forthcoming Warner Bros. debut, making hits and Fame

    Your music is super catchy, but at the same time you're doing something new. Do feel like you're bringing different flavors to the pop model?

    We do get labeled under the whole boy-band thing. It's hard because there have been other boy-bands that have come out recently. I think they're trying to recreate what was done in the 90s—like the 'NSYNC's of the world—in terms of style, especially. We try to be as normal and as edgy as possible because it's truly who we are. We're trying to represent ourselves and not come out with a cheesy feel. Especially in the realm of production, we were going for a more edgy sound. When people usually hear us, they sometimes feel a Justin Timberlake or Timbaland vibe. We want to keep the heavy edginess but still maintain that pop sentiment. It's still pop though. We try to put in our opinions as much as we can when the music is produced and say, "Listen, we're going for this…" I feel like we've done that, especially on "Lovestruck," our single. Most of the songs on our album are very similar to what you hear in "Lovestruck." We're trying to do a little something different but not go too crazy [Laughs].

    What's the story behind "Lovestruck?" There is almost a European dance vibe to it.

    Definitely! That comes from the two producers. They're these twins from Sweden, and they have a Euro-sound. When a band first comes together, you want to create a specific sound. In the beginning, we were going a little more urban. We had E-40 on one of our tracks, and we were going that route. As soon as we all heard "Lovestruck," there was something that we loved about it, but there was a lot of work done to "Lovestruck" to make it what it is. We're very pleased and proud of how it came out. "Lovestruck" was definitely a journey, but we found our sound with it and we've been modeling it after that.

    Who else have you been collaborating with?

    Our latest single features Naturi Naughton who I play opposite of in Fame. She's the main girl in it, and she has a killer voice so we had her do something on our track "Get Up," and it sounds incredible. We're excited! We're about to put that track out too. We worked together on the movie and we really clicked. Obviously, we both sing in the movie. It was just one of those things. Our A&R guy actually came up with the idea. He said, "Asher, what would you think of Naturi sang on a track?" I was like, "That's a really good idea." I told her about it, and she loved it. She got in the studio as soon as she could, and she did amazing.

    Are there any unexpected guest appearances on the album?

    We're actually working on getting certain artists in. I'm not going to say anything just yet [Laughs]. They're definitely will be some surprises where people will say, "Wow, V-Factory did that?!"

    How do your songs typically come together?

    At the beginning of the process, the label wanted to be heavily involved. Our A&R goes for the sound he knows that we want. He finds the songs and we tweak them as a group. We'll do different writing and change up beats. We do our part on it and see if we like it. We keep going in and recording to see if it's ultimately going to work. It's a process, and it's fun.

    How similar are performing on screen and on stage?

    Doing the stage thing was a huge part of my background growing up. It's so different going from performing in front of thousands of people to just performing in front of a camera and some crew guys. It's night and day, but I love both. I feel at home when I'm doing both so I enjoy the process of each equally. There's a difference, but work is work. You've got to go out and enjoy it.

    Is there a different mindset for each?

    It's all kind of relevant. Yes, theater is different. I'm more into theater vocal-wise. Acting-wise I've been in the acting world for a long time so I don't feel like I have to change my motive or the way I thought about it. I just went to it. I don't feel like I have to do anything too crazy for either. I just approach it with the right mindset.

    Was being in Fame a dream come true?

    Oh yeah! It was amazing. It was definitely a dream come true! To be able to be in a big movie was incredible. Singing has been my passion since I was little so being able to do all of that in a movie like this is mind blowing. I couldn't ask for anything more. The character was so much fun to play. He was so much like me. Everything about it just worked out. I can't wait for people to see it. It's right around the corner too. I'm so stoked.

    How do you juggle everything?

    Man, it's not easy [Laughs]. I've always been working. I started out in the business modeling, doing commercials and doing voiceovers. I've always felt like I've had my foot in different doors at the same time. These days there is so much more involved—flying everywhere for the movie and doing shows with the group every other minute. Keeping up with rest is key for me. Whatever I'm doing at the time, I try to give 100 percent to. It's hard, but I definitely can do it. It's about not getting run down, pushing forward and working hard. I've always done that before. It worked out in the past so I'll keep doing the same thing [Laughs].

    —Rick Florino

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