The Naked and Famous are an alternative rock band from Auckland, New Zealand. They formed in 2008 when Thom Powers and Alisa Xayalith recorded EPs This Machine and No Light with engineer Aaron Short, a fellow student at Auckland’s MAINZ music college. The band took their name from a line in the UK artist Tricky’s song “Tricky Kid”, “everybody wants to be naked and famous”, that is ambivalent about the notion of celebrity.
The EPs were subsequently released on local independent label Round Trip Mars and Powers and Xayalith began performing live with Ben Knapp and Jordan Clark on bass and drums respectively. Aaron Short became a performing member of the group. Knapp and Clark left the group and Jesse Wood (drums) and David Beadle (bass) joined the band as full-time members in 2009. The five-piece line-up recorded the groups albums Passive Me, Aggressive You (2010) and In Rolling Waves (2013), scheduled for release on 13 September 2013.
The band settled in Los Angeles in mid-2012 after completing touring for Passive Me, Aggressive You. They had performed over 200 shows in 24 countries between 2010 and 2012. Sharing a home over the back of Laurel Canyon, they began work in earnest on writing and demoing their second album. Their intention was to record an album that could be played live, not relying on backing tracks – something the group had always eschewed.
Entering LA’s Sunset Sound studio in March 2013 with engineer Billy Bush (who had mixed the previous album), they began the process of recording In Rolling Waves.
The album sessions were completed in a month and then in June 2013, The Naked and Famous headed for London where Alan Moulder spent a month mixing the album at his Willesden studio, Assault and Battery.
The album was mastered at Sterling Sound in New York by Joe LaPorta, who had also mastered Passive Me, Aggressive You.
The album was produced by Thom Powers with Aaron Short. Justin Meldal-Johnsen co-produced two tracks with Thom Powers.
On 23 July 2013, the band revealed their new single “Hearts Like Ours” along with the release date for their second studio album In Rolling Waves, on 16 September 2013 in the UK.The track shows a promising start for the album with Hev Bailey of Music Eyz saying “Hearts Like Ours ends just as steadily as it began, slipping quietly out of the speakers as though it were never there. The same can not be said for your head, however. It’s been two weeks since I first heard this track and I still wake up humming it every morning.
- New Song: The Naked And Famous, ‘Hearts Like Ours’ (buzzworthy.mtv.com)
- Introducing: The Naked and Famous (10thousandhands.blogspot.com)
- The Naked And Famous – Hearts Like Ours (ear2thesound.com)