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If you were a preteen in 2012, you probably remember MAX as one of your Nickelodeon crushes: Zander in “How to Rock.” He was the good looking new kid who would serenade the ladies with his smooth voice and guitar skills. Now 28 and weeks away from becoming a father, MAX is here with a masterful sophomore album, and is still handsome as ever.

Multiplatinum recording artist MAX has the ability to ignite a sudden serotonin release. His pop sound is enticing and invokes a good mood. MAX’s range allows for a unique listening experience, and his colorful aesthetic just makes sense. We can’t stop listening to “Blueberry Eyes” featuring BTS’ Suga with its positive message of love and catchy beat. The album also includes features from Hayley Kiyoko, Quinn XCII, Chromeo, bbno$, and Felly.

“Colour Vision is a fantasy of rich and vibrant colours and sounds mixed with very real stories from my world,” MAX says. Each song incorporates deeply personal stories with layered instrumentals, harmonies, and strong vocals from MAX to make for a different sound each time. Not to mention the production behind this album is impeccable. The album jumps between pop seranades with “Working for the Weekend,” to the funkiness of “Acid Dreams,” to the deeply soulful notes of “There Is A God.” If you like a genre bending album, “Colour Vision” is it.

MAX talked with LADYGUNN about preparing for fatherhood and his sophomore album “Colour Vision.”

First off, how are you doing? Are you keeping sane during quarantine?

Doing my best to keep sane. I’ve become a newfound reality tv addict, which I never was before quarantine. Maybe because I just miss reality so much.

We hear you and your wife are expecting your first child! What are you going to make sure to teach her from a young age?

We are! That’s been the best part of this quarantine. Being able to actually be there through the whole pregnancy, and not miss it while being on the road. I just want my baby girl to feel loved and supported in every moment of her life. I never want her to be afraid to be honest and to treat everyone with the same kindness no matter who they are.

Who are your musical inspirations?

James Brown, Prince, Justin Timberlake, Etta James, Frank Ocean, Beyonce.

What was your vision for “Colour Vision?” And do you think that changed when COVID hit mid-production?

The vision has always been the same, and if anything, rings more true during COVID times. It’s a reawakening and new perspective on your life. Finding the magic, finding the joy, finding the appreciation for everything you are and everything you have.

What was it like working with Hayley Kiyoko? Are your writing styles pretty similar?

Hayley and I have known each other so long it was just easy once we found the right song to do together. Our writing styles are definitely similar, especially in our obsession with detail and love for achieving exactly what we envisioned with everything we do.

How did the collab with BTS’ Suga come about?

He and Jungkook have been giving love to my music for a few years now. I had my first show in Korea in January of 2020 and arranged to meet up at Big Hit. What I thought was going to be a quick hello ended up being an hour-long hang where we really got to know each other. When he came to L.A we had a Korean BBQ dinner and went to his first basketball game in L.A. and it felt like we were close friends very quickly. The music came naturally right after that for both Blueberry Eyes on my album and Burn It on his Agust D project.

What was the inspiration for “Blueberry Eyes?”

I just really, really love my wife and every morning when I see her big blue eyes it feels like seeing them again for the first time. That’s what the song is about. How I dreamed I’d feel when I’d meet her one day. How I feel when I see those eyes right next to me. How, in reality, it’s even more calm and magical having her lay next to me than what I dreamed of.

What song(s) are you most excited for fans to hear?

Colour Vision and There Is A God. They start and end the album and they are two of my favorite songs I’ve ever done.

Who do you wish to collaborate with next?

Doing something with Tyler the Creator would be a dream for sure. I loved the world he created with “Igor” and every aspect of it. I met him one time at a brunch place and told him I was a fan. He was really nice about it.

What does the color yellow mean to you?

Hope, energy, life, magic, inspiration, youth, positivity, belief, a new beginning.




photos / Andrew Zenn

story / Sam Berlin

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