The Solutions are a Korean duo offering a delicate blend of rock and electronic dance music that showcases influence of 90’s British pop and American rock. The duo, consisting of Park Sol and Naru, were originally solo artists, and they found in each other a match, and thus The Solutions were born. As The Solutions, they share the job perfectly between them: although he also plays guitar and keyboard, Sol focuses more on the lead vocals, while Naru concentrates more on the lead guitar. Their sounds, that combine the sounds of guitars and synthesizers, have been called ‘dieselpunk music’ by The Gatehouse, an online dieselpunk and steampunk magazine.
Last year (2014), through the concert-making platform MyMusicTaste, The Solutions held a European tour, visiting Moscow, Paris, Liège, Rotterdam, Brussels, and Cologne, before going home to Seoul to perform the final and encore shows. We talked with the duo about their music and latest tour.
What did you see in one another that made you decide to form a band?
Naru: His vocal uniqueness and the ability to make different melodies. I also liked that he always had a really positive attitude.
Sol: The fact that Naru is able to create really unique guitar riffs and has great sense as a producer made me want to be in a band with him.
Before this band, each of you had had experience as solo artists. What experiences from those times that you still remember and find useful for the development of The Solutions?
Naru: I gained a lot of experience by being involved in all aspects of making music. From writing songs, recording, making the actual album, and performing on stage.
Sol: Being a solo artist and being the front man of a band is similar but different. Especially the different between promoting as a soloist and performing as The Solutions. The music genre in itself is quite different, which allowed me to orchestrate and learn how to perform and what type of energy I should use when on stage.
There was quite a long gap between the release of your first and second albums. What progress would you say that the long gap had given you the chance to develop?
Naru: I learned a lot as to how to perform within a band. Aside from just writing a song for an album, I also learned a lot about what it takes to promote an album and artist.
Sol: I had the opportunity to challenge myself and try different things out. Through such opportunities I was able to figured out what I needed more work on, and what my strong points were.
How did it feel like to be able to hold a show based on fans’ demand? Previously, had you ever expected that you have fans outside Korea enough to convince MyMusicTaste to hold a show on their demand?
Naru: I would have never imagined it possible. We were so so thankful for fans who showed to our concerts in the different cities.
Sol: I was extremely surprised that our fans were signing along to our songs and having such a great time despite the fact that they spoke a different language, were from a different culture, and from different countries. It was a time for us to feel so inspired and blessed.
How different was the atmosphere and the audience in Europe with those in Korea? Any interesting experience you’d care to share with us?
Naru: They actually enjoyed our shows just as much as our Korean fans do. How we felt after the concert ended, quite pleased, wasn’t much different from Korea.
Sol: How they enjoy the show might have been a little different but we were totally able to feel their huge love for us and our live music.
Can you tell us the story behind you bringing ‘Make the Girl Dance’ to Korea for a triple-bill gig at the end of the year in Korea?
Naru: The fact that Make the Girl Dance and we were planning a tour in our respective cities, gave us this huge opportunity to plan a tour in Europe, which was “THE SOLUTIONS MOVEMENT TOUR”. We were very honored to be a part of such a famous French artist’s show.
After Mu:con, Jimmy Douglas expressed his interest to work together with you. Any progress or follow-up so far that you can share with RekON?
We’re working on some songs with him. We’re very much looking forward to co-working with him for more good music.
Now a bit of personal questions, if you don’t mind. Does each of you have a song that you can never forget ever since you heard the song for the first time?
Naru: The Smashing Pumpkins – Set The Ray To Jerry
Sol: Radiohead – just
Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions this year?
Naru: Starting with making music State side, we will be working on various songs and release an EP. We will continue to have many shows, which we’ve always done. Personally, I plan to practice and study music even more.
Sol: I feel like I’ve grown and improved as a band and personally. Therefore, I can now see my faults a bit clearer as well. I plan on taking my time in figuring out those faults one at a time.
Either with songs that make us want to take to the dance floor like Talk, Dance, Party for Love or just sit silently weeping like Lines, The Solutions have clearly stolen our hearts. If you too are interested in their music, here is a list of The Solutions’ releases so far (with links to buy them on Bugs, Naver Music, Olleh, Melon, Mnet, etc.):
The Solutions (self-titled)