Rock|Life Talks to NEFFEX About What Makes Them Fighters
Bass drops so heavy even Arnold can’t lift them.
Welcome to the world of NEFFEX, where hard work pays off and the grind never stops. Founded in 2014 by Cam Wales and Bryce Savage, these LA-based friends are pushing out tracks just as quickly as they are writing them – and each one is like an orgasm for your ears. Filled with realness about life, love, and everything in between, the combination of Bryce’s flow and Cam’s technical prowess is definitely a force to be reckoned with.
RL: You’ve both been friends since you were 15, but how did you actually come up with the name NEFFEX?
NEFFEX: It was pretty random. We met in a punk rock band when we were in high school, but didn’t come up with the name until after college when we moved into a place together in OC. I almost started a lighting and effects company in college called “Effex” but the name was already taken. When we moved in and were thinking of names for our group we really liked artists who had names that sounded like words and were short and simple like Skrillex, Diplo etc. So we just said “what if we put an N on “effex” and thought it looked sick so we just went with it.
RL: It’s awesome that all of your music on YouTube is Copyright Free. What made you decide to create music that’s free for others to use?
NEFFEX: When we started making music we quickly realized that you could make the greatest song in the world, but it didn’t matter unless people heard it. We had no money to market our songs but we saw the success No Copyright Sounds was having on Youtube and thought it made a ton of sense to let other content creators use our music in their videos, so we decided to make our music copyright free as well. It’s been the key to our success on the marketing side. More and more people started using our music, which basically turned Youtube into a marketing funnel for discoverability.
RL: You succeeded at completing 100 tracks in 100 weeks – that’s insane.
NEFFEX: Yeah it is haha. We didn’t exactly plan on that when we started, but by the time we hit about 65-70 we realized we had to hit 100. We were inspired by guys like Russ and Lil Wayne who put out lots of music in a short time. It gave us a great opportunity to play with tons of genres and sounds, which helped us hit a diverse fan base and has been key for our development.
RL: Out of all the tracks you’ve put out, which one was the most challenging?
NEFFEX: That was probably our song “Hype.” We decided last minute that we didn’t like the chorus and the day before submitting the track ended up changing the entire thing. The song turned out to be pretty sick though with an epic drop instead of a chorus haha.
RL: You currently have around 1.5 million YouTube subscribers – that’s gotta feel pretty epic.
NEFFEX: Yeah it’s insane…the first 1,000 and 10,000 were definitely the toughest and conditioned us to grind, but to see the momentum and growth and to be where we are now is pretty cool.
RL: How do you put out so much music so quickly and not get “burn out?” It seems like every week when I listen to New Releases on Apple Music, there’s a new Neffex track on there.
NEFFEX: Haha we’d be lying if we said we didn’t feel “burn out” out by week 80ish but it was a really fun part of our journey. We got into a great flow and schedule with the production, writing, recording and engineering of our tracks to where most weeks it was pretty seamless. Seeing our fan base reacting to different styles and things we tried was a lot of fun too.
RL: “Fight Back” is one of my favorite tracks from you guys – talk to us about what place this song is coming from and why you decided to write it.
NEFFEX: It came from growing up and no one ever taking our passion for music seriously. Family, friends, no one really saw how big it could be, which is where the anger in the track and motivation comes from. But we channeled that energy, kept betting on ourselves, and eventually were able to make our dream a reality. A big part of both of our journeys and inspiration is encouraging people to work hard to achieve their dreams and persevere to get there no matter what anyone says. We knew it was a special track when we released it and are still overwhelmed by how it’s resonated with our audience. In hindsight, it’s definitely representative of our come-up in this industry having spent months doing weekly tracks while working day jobs, not getting industry attention for a long time, and figuring out ways to get our music heard and build an audience.
RL: What amps you up before recording?
NEFFEX: Energy drinks and Jameson haha. In reality our recording process is pretty simple and efficient and we just get amped by the fact that our job is to create a new piece of art each week.
RL: Anything big coming up in 2019?
NEFFEX: Tons…we’re planning to release our debut EP by the end of the summer and we’re confident it’s the best music we’ve ever made. After releasing so many singles it’s been incredible to have the time to really pour into a project and put together a cohesive body of work. We also have our first headlining tour coming up in Europe this fall followed by a US tour shortly after and we absolutely can’t wait. It’s always been our dream to be on stage and look out into a crowd full of people singing our songs so that’s a big thing to look forward to.
RL: Finally, what advice would you give to new artists just starting out?
NEFFEX: If you’re starting out understand that music isn’t just an art it’s a business now a days. Figuring out your brand and how to sell it is just as important as making amazing music. If you can’t sell it find someone who can help you sell it, your team will become your most important asset. Also practice, practice, practice, write, write, write and just keep putting out content allowing people to come along for the journey. Music is more in the artists control than ever before so be creative and find the outlets to get discovered. And finally enjoy the climb it’s the most magical time probably in your entire life. Each stream, dollar, and follower is like a drug. Stay addicted.
Check out NEFFEX’s video for “Fight Back” below: