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Steps take us through new album ‘What The Future Holds’ track-by-track

The group tell us about their new album in their own words.

Steps
Credit: BMG

We’re just days away from the release of Steps’ brand-new album ‘What The Future Holds’ and fans have already been treated to four songs from the record to give them a feel for what to expect.

A bold and modern pop record that features plenty of classic Steps, the album is a progression from ‘Tears On The Dancefloor’ but it harks back to the band’s earlier albums like their iconic second album ‘Steptacular’.

Ahead of the album’s release, I jumped onto Zoom with Steps so they could tell me about each of the tracks in their own words. Find out what they had to say and what you can expect from the album by reading on…

1. What The Future Holds

Claire: ‘What The Future Holds’ is really the song that kicked off the whole journey of this album, and it’s the title track as well. We heard this song probably two or three years ago whilst we were promoting ‘Tears On The Dancefloor’. It was one of the very first songs that we heard and probably the first song where we all kind of just went, ‘wow, this is amazing. We have to record it. This gives us the opportunity to move on from “Tears On The Dancefloor”‘. Then we found out that Sia had written it and that sealed the deal. To have somebody like her, write a song for an act like us, who a lot of people would consider to be heritage or retro. To have somebody as current and have chart hits as recently as Sia has, it’s just a real honour. It’s amazing that people like her think of us as being able to do justice to a song like that.’

2. Something In Your Eyes

Faye: ‘Something In Your Eyes’ is our official second release from the album. It was the second video that we did, which was really exciting and it looks like nothing we’ve ever done before with the pastel rainbow going on – very, very camp. I think it was a bit of a gamble throwing it out after ‘What The Future Holds’ because it’s so different, but I think our fanbase have always enjoyed us doing an ABBA-esque type feel production on songs. We were absolutely bowled over by the response and it was even trending at number seven on the US video charts, which completely threw us (laughs). It was one of those songs that once we played it in the room, it just did exactly what we needed it to do. It ticked all the boxes for a great pop record.

3. Clouds

H: ‘Oh, I love this track. I think it’s a band favourite as well. I think the chorus is really anthemic and I can’t wait for us to possibly do this on tour. The fans will decide. We always look at streaming and what songs are the most popular on that list. I’d love to perform this on tour. I love the chant that ‘whoa’ (bit at the beginning). It always reminds me of the way ‘Better Best Forgotten’ starts.’

4. Beat Of My Heart

Lisa: “I think it’s just got such a feel-good vibe. I love it when Steps do pop-dance because I think we do it really well. Personally, from a musical point of view that’s my favourite type of music anyway. Mollie King, who was one part of The Saturdays and is a Radio One DJ, she’s a co-writer on there. I recorded (my parts) in Brighton, which was a fun day out. I recorded (my parts) in about two hours. (Afterwards) I went for a walk along the promenade, and the seafront and bought some donuts and got attacked by the seagulls on the beach. It was quite a memorable day. I do love track and I think the lyrics are great, especially in lockdown. It’s just really uplifting and full of hope and I can imagine everyone dancing in the nightclubs when they’re allowed to go clubbing again.”

5. Father’s Eyes

Lee: ‘Ina Wroldsen, who’s worked with Britney Spears and Clean Bandit, is a writer on this track with Arnthor Birgisson. When we all heard it, we were all really very keen to record it. I (think it’s about) being blinded by love and you can’t really see the wood for the trees, and your parents are always right. When you’re in this bad relationship, you think it’s a great relationship but everyone sees that the person’s bad for you. You just don’t see it because you’re just blinded by love.’

6. One Touch

Faye: ‘As soon as I heard this one I thought it sounded like an Anastacia song. It has a real throwback production feel. It’s got an amazing key change in there – everybody loves Steps songs to have a key change – and there’s a really interesting middle eight thing going on as well. It’s just a great thumpy disco track. It’s a good dance track. Love this one.’

7. Under My Skin

Claire: ‘I think this possibly is my favourite song on the album actually. From the second I heard it, I absolutely loved. I played it over and over and over again. H didn’t really like it at first. It gives us a chance to really get our teeth into the vocals and to have a real good sing. This is the type of song that was missing from the last album; this kind of nice mellow mid-tempo ballad. One of the writers, Rachel Furner, is really, really talented. I’m a massive fan of her writing and we’re lucky that we got this song for us. It’s ended up being a really good Steps track.’

8. Heartbreak in This City

Lisa: ‘This is another great uplifting song. It was features one of our original Steps writers Karl Twigg who wrote ‘One For Sorrow’, ‘Deeper Shade of Blue’, ‘Stomp’ and songs like that. I like this song. I think it echoes some of the traits of our original Steps songs and hits that fans love. It has that air of nostalgia and it ticks all the boxes for a Steps song. I really enjoy the the verses and the lyrics and it’s got a great chorus. I think it will be popular with the fans because it does touch on classic Steps.’

9. Come and Dance With Me

Lee: ‘This one reminded us a little bit of ‘Firefly’ from ‘Tears On The Dancefloor’. This was written by Carl Ryden and Fiona Bevan who’ve written songs for us before including ‘Scared Of The Dark’. This one really is just about feeling free, living in the moment and being yourself, which is very much what we’re about. Our policy is we want people to be themselves and have fun and live life, and I think that’s what this song says. It’s just literally letting yourself go, feeling free and just enjoying the moment. We get one life, make the most of it.’

10. Don’t You Leave Us Halfway

Faye: ‘This one for me feels a little bit like ‘Neon Blue’ when it kicks in. I think it’s a really nice uplifting song about not giving up, the consequences of giving up and fighting for your relationships. The history that we’ve got within the band watching people go through relationships and grow up, it feels lyrically relevant to where we are now. I hope that the fans that are listening to this, who have grown up with us, relate to it in the same sort of way. We’ve had so many people who have grown up listening to our music and it’s meant different things and they’ve felt stronger through it. I think this is a really nice one for the time in our lives now.’

11. To The One

H: ‘This takes me down a little retro trip. Put on your shell suits, put on ‘Mannequin’ on the TV. It reminds me of all those classic 80s movies. They do a lot of reboots and things that look vintage though, and one of my favourite shows is ‘Stranger Things’ and I think this fits perfectly in that that world on that soundtrack. I adore this song. It just transports me back to my childhood. I love it.’

12. Hold My Heart

Claire: ‘This is another favourite of mine actually. I tend to like all the slow songs where we don’t have to do any dancing if we perform it (laughs). This is a song that’s like our ‘When I Said Goodbye’ equivalent. It’s really nice and stripped back, and it’s really all just about the vocals on this song. I really enjoyed recording it because this is really my type of song so it’s really easy to just get your teeth into it and really put yourself in the position of being the person experiencing the song and the lyrics. I think we all sound fantastic on this, even if I do say so myself. After the all the big bangers and the mid tempos, we finish the album off nicely with this ballad. I think it’s just perfect ending to the perfect pop album.’

Steps release their new album ‘What The Future Holds’ on Friday 27th November 2020 and it’s available to pre-order now.

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