From 'harrowing' American Idol to 2022's most talked-about band

October 3, 2022 3:50 pm

[Source: BBC]

The lead singer of LA-based band Gabriels has just stepped off stage at Glastonbury, where an unexpectedly large crowd watched their soul-soaked, mid-afternoon set.

“When Beyoncé did Glastonbury years ago, she’d go, ‘GLASTONBURY, ARE YOU READY?!’ And I used to scream that in my living room,” he says. “So to actually be at Glastonbury, it’s a little overwhelming.

“I feel love just everywhere. It’s a good vibe.”

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Dressed in a custom green and blue satin robe, the singer is full of zest, cackling as he describes the gulf between his Glastonbury gladrags and the shabby hotel he’s been forced to stay in.

“I went to use the soap dispenser and grit came out,” he laughs. “We’re new artists, so I guess we don’t have the big budget.”

If all goes according to plan, that won’t last long.

Gabriels set the industry abuzz in 2020 with their debut EP, Love And Hate In A Different Time, which Sir Elton John called “one of the most seminal records I’ve heard in the last 10 years”.

The title track is both fire and brimstone as Lusk sings of “rapture coming” and the “walking dead all around me” over convulsing Motown drums and ominous spiritual chants.

The cracked beauty of his falsetto makes him sound like a fallen angel.

In the video, the music comes to a sudden halt and the picture cuts to footage of Lusk singing Strange Fruit to thousands of people at a Black Lives Matter protest.

“That whole song came out of our souls, because of what we were experiencing,” he says. “Everything seems to be going backwards. Racism. Sexism. Homophobia. What is happening? We’re supposed to be progressing.”