We get to know Martin Costaz, the indie-folk artist also known as Lake Folks.

So, who are you?

I am Martin Costaz aka Lake Folks, I’m a 24-year-old French London-based indie-folk artist.

Where are you from?

I’m from France, the French Alps to be more precise (between Lyon and Geneva).

How long have you been together?

Unlike what my artist name suggests, Lake Folks has until recently been more of a solo project. I started writing songs by myself since around 2016, but it all really started with the release of my first EP in July 2017.

But with the new EP coming up (March 18th), I started playing with a band, first to record it, and now from now on, I’m going to try to play as much as possible exclusively with the band. So we’ve been playing together for a few months now.

How long have you been playing music?

I started music when I was around five years old by learning the piano. I started guitar and singing later, in high school.

Why should people listen to your band?

Well, first because I believe we’re making good music. Some people may qualify it as quite “easy to listen to”, which I believe is a good thing. Indeed, I feel like our music covers a range of emotions and styles that make it easy for anyone to find a song that they would want to listen to in any given situation.

I also believe that they are songs that people can easily relate to as well. Even if some songs, especially ‘Astronaut’, are obviously more metaphorical, they’re quite honest songs relating things that can happen to anyone.

What is your ideal touring line-up?

Probably just as we’re playing our gigs at the moment: one acoustic guitar/singer, one electric guitar, one bass, one drum set and one backing vocalist. Keeping it simple for now. The most important for a good tour is probably just for all of us to be good friends.

What does music mean to you?

This is a big one…

Well, “my life” would be a bit of a dramatic answer, but yes it’s always been there with me and for me for a very long time, and now I’ve turned my life to give it as much energy as possible, so it’s definitely a big part of my life.

What was the first record you bought when you were younger?

I honestly can’t remember… but I remember borrowing a lot of CDs from my older brother when I was a kid, including a lot of Ben Harper as he was a big fan. So yes, that was probably among the first albums I had around.

What artists first inspired you to start playing music?

As I told you, having started piano at around five, I’m not sure I knew many artists back then, even though my mother would listen to a lot of music at home. I guess it’d be easier to give names that could have inspired me to start guitar later though, such as Ben Harper, Simon and Garfunkel, Cocoon (a French band), The Kooks, etc.

What’s the most aesthetically pleasing album cover that you have in your collection?

I think An Awesome Wave by Alt-J. Such a great album too.

What kind of movie genre do you think your music would best be the soundtrack for?

Haha, probably a movie including a road trip.

Recommend us a record, a book, and a movie…

There are so many…

For a record: one of my all-time favourite, Declaration of Dependence by Kings of Convenience, because it’s going to be 10 years old already.

For a book: The Little Prince by Antoine de St Exupéry, my favourite book.

For a movie: The Departed by Martin Scorsese.

Any last words for the readers of Highwire Magazine?

If you’d like to hear what my music sounds like live, I’ll be doing an EP-release gig on March 16th in the beautiful church of St John’s Hoxton!

It’ll be two days before my EP comes out on the internet, so you’ll get an opportunity to get my EP before everyone else!

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