Detroit rockers Filmspeed takes us through their “Hexadecimal” album track-by-track

Two parts Motown, one part Tinseltown, all parts moving. This is how Detroit power trio Filmspeed describe their intricate sound. Comprised of Craig Broomba (vocals, guitars), Nick Stout (bass, guitar, backup vocals), and Oliver Dobrian (drums, backup vocals), Filmspeed combines blood pumping anthems, melodic hooks, and soulful grooves to create a sound that is uniquely their own, as evident in their album “Hexadecimal.” The name stems on a reflection of memories and past events that tell a story from your point of view. The band explains, “[memories] always comes in bits and pieces like chopped up scenes from a movie about yourself. As more crazy things happen in this life, the more you’re living at the speed of a film; Filmspeed.”

We asked Craig, Nick, and Oliver to take us through the album, track by track to get a better idea of where the music comes from. Read on!

Anywhere But Here
This jam was written to be exactly that, a jammm. It’s inspired by windows down, sunny sky, radio blasting, with the lil lady riding shotgun and belting out Hair Metal songs at the “Get Off My Lawn” crowd. At moments when I’m happiest does a song like this come out.

We tend to open up live sets with this track, so it made most sense to kickstart the album. Kind of feels like loading up the cannon and then lighting the fuse. It’s always our secret desire to be that very song you’re belting out on your sunny drive.

Just My Luck
Ever thought to yourself, “What the f^ck are the odds of this sh*t!?” How ‘bout daily? How about so often you’ve lost the reflexes to even shrug? Ok, you’re almost there. Call it fate, call it God’s will, call it the universe, but don’t call it coincidence.

I may be one of the biggest skeptics, one of the biggest cynics you are likely to meet, however when things line up the way they tend to do in this life, it’s very difficult to deny some kind of bigger plan going on. For most people, the shock never wears off so it’s not as easy to connect the dots. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, this type of thing happens so often that I might as well write a song about it. We ended up choosing this track as our 2nd single. With the sarcastic swagger, it’s a nice redirect towards a bit more attitude.

There’s A Way
I’ve had an unhealthy obsession with time since I was a little kid. It is the only resource an individual has that is perpetually diminishing. Nothing is forever and no one can offer you extra time. This song is a reflection of the anxiety that comes with building this music career in a constant state of crippling urgency. Everything needs to be done yesterday. The album should’ve been out two years ago. This song was written almost three years ago.

Funny enough, the working title for this track was “Running”, that’s just with the vibe of the music made me want to do. Since everything about this career is so rushed, its easy to talk about the subject on a track that feels both urgent and unstoppable. At multiple times in my life I’ve had to deal with anxiety, depression and insomnia. This song helps bleed the lines, if you will, as a mantra to “Get your mind made up and your feet still running. We know there’s a way.”

Why Don’t We
This is the song we play to get singles in the crowd to start mingling. The 2nd verse begins
“The last call’s in a few. It’s one for me, or it’s two for you. Either way I think we’d better sleep it off.” Not a whole lot of hidden meaning there. It’s meant to be a party song.

The beginnings of this song are actually inspired by a cheesy demo drum loop on a cheapy cheap keyboard. It had this kick snare pattern that reminded me a lot of “Tears of a Clown”. Once I ran into a guitar line that complimented it, song took more of a “Money Talks” feel. It reminded me of those minutes at the bar right before they bring the ‘ugly lights’ up, when everyone is making their last sales pitches to wake up in a new bed, most of us have been there. Whether you or not you succeeded is at least two different songs.

I Feel Alright
For years now, I’ve maintained a few personal twists on a cliched statement. “When life hands you lemons, squirt the juice in the eyes of your enemies. If you find yourself without enemies… it’s Martini time.” Whether it’s fueled by powerful intoxication or pure spite of the universe, this song is about keeping it cool while it’s all burning down.

Between family health issues, legal troubles, the endless financial struggle, and the everyday anxiety of being a musician, it’s always tough to identify which one is causing the insomnia on any particular evening. At the height of some of this chaos, I was out and about, gigging with the boys and bumped in to a buddy I hadn’t seen in a while. Catching me right after a set is like kicking the door open during an orgy, neither side of it is prepared. What you’ll get is an out of breath, sweaty, full of piss and bourbon, wide-eyed maniac. Now; standard question when you see someone is, “How ARE you?!”, and although standard replies are widely varied, my instinctual answer was, “Ya know? I feel alright. I feel better than I should.”

It kind of occurred to me then that “the show must go on”, not just for the friend who, I’m sure isn’t looking for a full ‘Katie Couric special’, but for myself as well. Everyone deals with chaos, everyone handles it differently. For my part, I choose to freshen my drink, and give it all the old one finger salute.

Love Me Like Tomorrow
Both Nick and I had parents pass away this past year.
This song is incredibly difficult to explain. I’m still processing any of it.

This past March, I flew in to Detroit from Kansas City after the fight of my life. My sister picked me up from the airport and we went straight to a hotel that she, brother in-law, both nieces, my Mom and her husband were all stuck at for the last week while the power was still out in their neighborhood. My Mom had been battling breast cancer for 5 years and was currently under in-home hospice/palliative care. Although my brother in-law is an RN (and an amazing one at that) no part of a hotel room setup was ideal.

Before this, the last time I had seen my Mom was right before Christmas, and none of us knew if it would ever happen again. When I came through the hotel room doors, I got to see a smile that I’ll never be able to forget. This woman had been bedridden since a brain tumor removal on Christmas eve, she needed help with everything from eating to restroom. When she got the news that I was on my way, she managed to get propped up in the main living room in a recliner facing the door. A little extra context about this woman, my Dad left us when I was 9, you’re looking at a career Mom here.

I arrived the morning of March 11th, by midday March 12th she left with me holding her hand.

We all had these extravagant plans to get her back home that afternoon with or without power at the house. Everybody was getting ready to come over the next day to celebrate. Her birthday is March 13th.

This song was written in an instant.

Media Driven Sheep
I don’t think I have been able to actually watch news programs in over a decade. Anyone that makes money to tell you a story is trying to sell something, and these people profit off tragedy.

We live in an age where weekly outrage is the norm and no one has a trusted source for the truth. To pour salt on that wound, this song was written about 2 years ago, before the whole “fake news” term started conquering the discussion. So long as you have a social media profile, it evidently makes you an expert on any given topic that arouses you. It’s fascinating to see how quickly groups of people can turn on each other just by finding a polarizing topic. We have a broken relationship between society and its media.

It’s important to be informed, but in a generation of instant information, it’s often the first account that people internalize. When your first source is in any way biased, it affects your perception. Since it only takes 140 some characters or less to tell people how you feel in that moment, you yourself help spread the visceral ignorance. The point of this song is to think for yourself and to listen more than speak.

The Rule of 3’s
This one’s written about being kept in the dark by everyone that I had trusted at one time. The lyrics for the song are pointed to a particular moment of reflection. Remembering all the little moves that you didn’t really notice before. All the little clues that we’re right in front of your face. These words are written in retrospect and describe a natural disposition to handle trauma. We had another death in the family around the time when this was first being written.

“Trust when I say I’ve heard it all, I’ve heard it all.”

There’s something about the percussive nature of this music, combined with the switching between common and half time, that stirs up these emotions. It definitely makes for a good live performance.

The Money Game
You learn a lot about a person when you get to see it all play out in a courtroom. I’ve never heard the phrase “a burdensome amount of cash” before. I highly doubt I’ll ever hear it again. Greed is one of the seven deadly sins, and it has a long and ugly history of ruining lives.
I don’t think we have time to get into specific detail, if only to protect the names of the guilty.

Of course this track comes directly after the previous one, as the inspiration is directly related. In some parallel universe, things went differently, and I do not have the liberty to speak about it. Thankfully, I’m here singing about this twisted web of fraud, betrayal and putting people at risk for personal gain. There’s an art kid trapped somewhere inside of me that is so giddy about the verses of this song (hint* it has everything to do with the amount of chords).

Everything Is More Fun In the Dark
Scratches, biting, whips, tie downs to bedposts. I don’t necessarily think this one needs spelling out. Just make sure to put a necktie on the doorknob or something.

Bye Bye
The title says it, the lyrics elaborate. This is not a long-sad goodbye. This is a “I hope the door hits you” type of farewell. Don’t sit here and give me the big eyed, teary face drama show, GTFO. If I have a bigger break up than this one, it’ll end in someone dying, so it’s important this one gets the send off it deserves.

It’s way more of a celebration than anything else, it’s a big driving slide guitar jam. This is absolutely a song I would order a bourbon for. I do like this being the last track, because it’s a wonderful anthem of leaving the past behind and prepping for the future.

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