The Faim’s title track from its debut EP, “Summer is a Curse” could be considered a reflection of the band’s work ethic. The energetic song is an anthem of aspirations with lyrics including “I can’t see what the future holds, but I want to know” and “If you never try you never know.”
Just this year, the band released two singles, a song cover and an EP. Now, the band is on tour with Hands Like Houses and is scheduled to perform in Chicago Nov. 16.
Ahead of the performance, The Phoenix spoke with The Faim’s lead singer Josh Raven about the band’s career.
The Faim got its start back when Raven was in high school. He and the band’s keyboardist and bassist Stephen Beerkens enjoyed making music together, according to Raven, now 21.
“We never really actually sat down, and were like ‘let’s start a band,’” Raven said. “It kind of happened really naturally. We were like ‘Hey, let’s keep writing music together,’ and then we started writing songs.”
From there, they recruited their guitarist and drummer. The band worked under the guidance of producer John Feldmann, who previously worked with punk bands including Blink-182 and All Time Low.
Raven said the band embraces every opportunity that comes its way.
“We soak it up and we try to learn as much as we can,” Raven, said. “We’re not afraid of failure. We’re not afraid of criticism; in fact, we welcome it. To us that’s the best way to learn; that’s the best way to grow.”
Raven said he grew up appreciating a range of music from hip-hop to classical, and this range is reflected in The Faim’s EP.
Each song on the band’s EP has a different sound, all supported by Raven’s crooning voice. “Summer is a Curse” is upbeat and optimistic while “Make Believe” is more emotional, with lamenting piano chords and guitar riffs.
The Faim’s single, “Saints of the Sinners,” co-written with Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz, has classic elements of punk rock music.
Raven said Feldmann was the impetus for the collaboration. Feldmann reached out to Wentz, but the band didn’t know for sure whether he’d respond, Raven said. However, Wentz showed up to the studio surprising the band.
Raven said he enjoyed working with Wentz and seeing how down-to-earth he was.
“When you’re young and you idolize these bands [and] you idolize these people, you unintentionally put them on this kind of pedestal that you don’t really realize,” Raven said. “Then you meet them and get to understand the people that they are and you realize that there’s nothing different between you and them.”
Throughout the band’s journey, Raven said he’s always mindful of one value — passion. It’s something that can be heard in the band’s music, and something audiences can expect on-stage.
Raven said he wants The Faim’s shows to create a sense of community and leave audiences with the same passion the band members feel.
“We want them to think, ‘Wow, we just saw four guys that love what they do and they treat every moment on stage as if it’s going to be their last,’” Raven said. “Being so present and so in the moment for us is beyond important.”
The Faim is slated to perform at the Bottom Lounge (1375 W. Lake St.) Nov. 16, and its music is available on streaming platforms including Spotify and Apple Music.