Sweet Cambodia
Gig Seeker Pro

Sweet Cambodia

Orlando, Florida, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2015 | SELF

Orlando, Florida, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2015
Band Alternative Funk





As someone who’s never ventured into funk rock before, I was a little apprehensive with no idea what to expect, but Sweet Cambodia was a sweet surprise. Funk rockers Sweet Cambodia gives us a little something different. From their self-described “crazy stage presence” to their booming energy, this Florida-based band serves up the perfect amount of funk and edge behind impassioned sound.

Their latest single “Anxiety” proves that, and more. This track off their forthcoming album Tasty showcases not only the band’s artistry — but also their honesty.

Sweet Cambodia Keeps it Honest
With an energizing opening riff and lyrics like “Just one more sip / Like the Titanic / I am a sinking ship,” “Anxiety” immediately puts us inside Sweet Cambodia’s head.

The band says, “This song is about all those nights that your parents can’t fix for you. That you have to ultimately face your mistakes.” But there’s also this whole other element. They talk about the anxiety in knowing you fell a little short and can’t fix it.

In between confessions of a crazy, messy night we get this telling chorus: “Be honest with yourself / Because no matter how tall you are you’ll never reach the top shelf / I got all of this anxiety / Pent up living deep down inside of me.”

Their lyrics are bitey and honest, and they work so well against their instruments. It all works pretty perfectly together, each member showcases their talents in the best way. Sweet Cambodia is being honest and realizing their mistakes, but in the most positive way possible. They create this incredible mix of prog and funk, packaged in indie band boy personas. It’s one of a kind and extremely memorable.

It’s also clear that the band’s having fun with it. Even while coming to terms with consequences, there’s a fun-loving aspect. It comes through in the energized backing and a rioting outro. There’s never a moment where they don’t sound into it.

On top of this, Sweet Cambodia plays music that’s incredibly infectious. They lead with such coolness it’s hard to not want to listen. Seriously, Sweet Cambodia exudes the confidence other bands wish they had.The whole band exudes confidence.

That’s key. It’s something we didn’t really expect, and it’s impossible to ignore.

Be sure to check out other cuts from Anxiety, and more from Sweet Cambodia. - Indie Band Guru

"Sweet Cambodia: Tasty EP Preview"

Summer 2015 saw the formation of Sweet Cambodia plus they’ve played a multitude of gigs/ festivals within the Orlando area. Coming all the way from Orlando this funktastic 4 piece consist of Yante B, Eric Charles, Savvy Savage and Donnie Fusion.
Having recently released the brand new single Anxiety, this delightful band are set to drop debut EP Tasty. When listening to the stream of Anxiety I saw that the Tasty 4 track release was being streamed. Instead of reviewing the single I’ve decided to share my thoughts on this exquisite EP.
Now I would place Sweet Cambodia within the indie rock genre. This tasty EP consists of 4 tasty treats each being truly majestical.
Sky: Opening up this mini album you had this tempting track which I found to be extremely mesmerising. Everything about this number was pure perfection, the blissful lyrics left me hooked and the melody was rather refreshing. This captivating tune reminded me of UK band Everything Everything. Towards the end of this sumptuous song were some impressive guitar riffs.
Anxiety: Now I found this to be an upbeat groovy jam which can easily have you moving on the spot. Actually this promising single left me completely entranced the whole delivery was pure perfection. “This song is about all those nights that your parents can’t fix for you. That you have to ultimately face your mistakes”. Delivered at a gentle/ hypnotic pace, Anxiety was a tune I fell for hook, line and sinker. What I liked the most was the fact this number offered a narrative making me envision a night out with friends.
Cold Copper: Compared to the opening two tunes Cold Copper was extremely different. You could say it was a game changer as this mellowing number had a ballad feel to it. The chilled out lyrics left me in a trance plus it made me smile from beginning to end.
Sun Poisoning: Good this must come to an end in this case it was Sun Poisoning that the curtain came down on. Opening with some epic guitar playing, tight harmonising and some husky Spanish words, Sun Poisoning was a cut which intrigued me greatly. Now the lyrics were pure perfection as they were smothered in plenty of indie vibes. Just like Sky the light vocal delivery reminded me of Everything Everything. Everything about this song was extraordinary, Yante’s vocals were out of this word as they left me well and enthralled. Nearing the end there was a frantic guitar solo which I found to be rather breathtaking.

OVERALL: Just listening to this 4 track EP left me greatly impressed. To say I was hooked on the very first listen is saying something. Each tune had been written to perfection as those lyrics left me under a spell. The vocals and harmonies were pure perfection.
When it comes to picking a favourite Cold Copper just edges it. Still I’m very excited to see what the future holds for this American group. I for one cannot wait to hear more original indie rock jams in the future. - Music is My Radar

"Sweet Cambodia - Tasty"

I often tout the merits of albums that are unabashedly monochromatic, especially when it comes to rock. I miss the days of AC/DC and Motorhead - the days when bands knew what they were good at and stuck to it. I’ve written glowing reviews for bands like the Relevant Elephants, lamenting the death of good straightforward rock albums, and praising bands for honing their genre.

It’s less often that I listen to an album that’s really hard to categorize. It’s easy to overindulge in artistic experimentation, especially in this modern musical culture where there are dozens of fantastic musical genres available a mouse click away, and when modern country music is using dubstep influences in its rhythm, when most modern pop music uses reggaeton beats, and when the old stalwarts of rock are getting leathery and slow and replaced by Fall Out Boy.

Bands that successfully morph genres together and sound comfortable in each one are rare, and I’ve found one in the Orlando, FL four piece Sweet Cambodia.

They call Tasty, their debut EP, “progressive soul funk,” and the genre is as dense as its name. Elements of reggae, of classic 70s funk, of Motown soul, and even, bizarrely, traces of trash metal, pop up here and there in this EP, but all of the sounds mesh together beautifully and the band performs with aplomb.

The EP opens with “Sky,” and a wonderfully catchy head-bopping rhythm that leads into Yante Beliveau’s clean tenor. Drummer Donnie Fuson’s deft use of cymbals makes the song bounce, and combined with Eric Charles’ funky electric guitar, lets the song twist and writhe with energy.

Track #2 “Anxiety” really shows off bassist Lukas “Savvy” Saavedra, with breaks every few measures for a bass riff. The band is tight on its fills and their unison rhythmic chords in this song calls Hendrix to mind.

Track #3 “Cold Copper” is my favorite on the EP, and shows that the band can slow things down. That’s an important feat, as their website and press focuses heavily on their high energy and ability to rock the house: “their live shows often end in things getting smashed, because they love to top each other with their on-stage antics” (audiofuzz.com). Saavedra also shows off his lower register in this track; the vocal melody has a gorgeous repeating run that sounds very comfortable in Saavedra’s voice.

The band closes their debut EP with “Sun Poisoning,” which opens with a group vocal into an extended guitar solo. This suddenly breaks into an awesomely weird flamenco-ish spoken verse (in Spanish, of course), then into another group vocal, then into a classic funk breakdown. Some of the band’s press compliments their ability to listen to each other, and this song definitely shows that ability.

Tasty is a solid introduction with no obvious flaws; Sweet Cambodia are undeniably skilled, their songs are fun and interesting, and if they play anywhere near me, I sure as hell want to see them smash something.

Score: 5/5

Track Listing:

1. Sky
2. Anxiety
3. Cold Copper
4. Sun Poisoning - Music Box Pete


Sweet Cambodia is a gang of four (likely shirtless) men running around the metaphorical Amazon jungle making crazy noises and sounds. “Tasty” is the result when they record it.

Intense guitar solos, exciting drum beats, a soulful bass, and freeing lyrics is what Sweet Cambodia is all about. They might destroy the stage, but they will also have fun with the crowd and make it a great night to be alive. Acting crazy is like a contest with the band members, so you’ll never be able to anticipate what they’ll bring to their songs. What you can expect, though, is something that will bring you to life. The multiple stage dives every show, funny and/or heartfelt speeches to set up the next song, and a beautiful disaster of loud music and fun people.

Savvy, the bassist, is seemingly the face of the band. He plays to make everyone dance, including himself and his bandmates. He does what he feels and wears just about nothing doing it. He is the vibe. The guitarist, Eric, is his partner in destruction. Eric plays to show off and he has a right to. With his genuine excitement he shreds and solos moving around the stage with his guitar behind his head without missing a single strum. He is the fire.

Savvy and Eric are the stage divers I mentioned earlier. Next we have Donnie, a drummer who follows his mates perfectly by providing a backbone but without coming anywhere close to being the calm one. Interesting fills and multiple crash cymbal usage make him someone worth paying attention to. Donnie is the bone in “bad to the bone.” Finally, there is Yante. The calmest one in the group, but still insanely fun. With his smooth vocals he keeps the band moving in a state of flow. Performance-wise, he can be relied on to create a show that doesn’t have a low point. Instead of dancing and diving like the others he would rather slide around the whole stage in partnership. He is the one to call out to the crowd and bring them into the show. He is the feeling. All together they form Sweet Cambodia and it is sweet! “Tasty” is only the beginning of their stage takeover.

To listen to part of their up and coming EP visit their website. “Tasty” is expected to release in June 2016 but the group is doing live shows until then and, of course, after. I highly recommend taking one in, because that is where you will get a truly exciting on-stage show. - AudioPress.US

"PREMIERE: Sweet Cambodia — "Cold Copper""

Hailing from the boy band hotbed of Orlando, Sweet Cambodia are anything but one of those groups. The quartet has been plugging away since moving there from their respect hometowns, and are releasing their debut EP, Tasty, that will be out on a few weeks. You can hear the band's "Cold Copper" now before that comes out. Their laidback brand of alt pop is as catchy as it is easy to relate to.

"We tried to capture a development of deeper understanding of ones self," the band says. "Which results in the strength to love yourself." The band tried to create a cohesive and organic sound in this track and they recorded the instrumental live in a single take."

Sweet Cambodia's Tasty will be out in mid-June. - Pure Volume

"Tasty Funk/Rock: Sweet Cambodia – “Cold Copper”"

Well, Sweet Cambodia does it again. In time for summer, they have dropped another funky/rocky/soulful pearl for us to enjoy. This is the band to watch, guys. And rumor has it, their live shows often end in things getting smashed, because they love to top each other with their on-stage antics. Their music is just so good and exciting. They are hitting the road this summer and fall, and they better come to Pittsburgh. Gathering in Orlando, after leaving their individual Florida towns, the guys found they had so much in common, and it shows. Forming in September 2015, Tasty is their first EP. Sweet Cambodia is Lukas “Savvy” Saavedra (bass guitar, backup vocals), Eric Charles (guitar, backup vocals), Donnie Fuson (drums) and Yante Beliveau (vocals). These guys rock and funk with the best of them. Check them out. Tour information is coming soon. - Audio Fuzz

"Unsigned Spotlight: Sweet Cambodia"

Please list all of your band members and their roles in the band.

Yante Beliveau (Lead Vocals)
Eric Charles (Guitar & Vocals)
Savvy (Bass Guitar & Vocals)
Donnie Fuson

For starters, what bands were you guys a part of prior to Sweet Cambodia? How long has the band been around?

Well Yante had been a solo singer songwriter in Fort Walton Florida, and a band called The Bakery. Donnie had been in a project called Beyond Tales a progressive John Mayer-ish sounding band. Eric had played in several bands on of which was named the Weekend Waves. This is Savvy's first project.

What’s the origin of that name and have you changed the band’s name before?

Well you see there's this river in Cambodia that everyone goes to with the intention of tubing down. On the shore of the river there's tea shops and such that serve cannabis food, mushroom teas, and opium tea. So basically people travel to come to this river to get dosed and enjoy the majestic that is the khemer country side.

Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs and do you think these topics will change over time?

Our songs start randomly wether someone brings a chord progression or a lick or even just something conceptual that might captivate our attention. Our topics range from ethics, perseverance, healing, and satire. Of course as we grow and develop, and our lives shape them selves we will experience different things.

What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making?

Red Hot Chili Peppers
Nahko Bear

Was there a particular band/artist or concert that inspired you to start a band?

We all have had a wide range of artists that have inspired us. We all come from such different worlds of music that our forming of a band was sort of just an eventuality of finding a band.

What do you do to prepare for a show? Any flexing, exercises, ect …

We all make sure to stretch the morning of and an hour before the show. Don gets about 15-30 minutes of warm up time on stage usually to do all his adjustments. Yante, Savvy, and Eric all do vocal warm ups. Eric and Savvy do 2 sets of warm ups to make sure their hands are ready.

What has been the biggest highlight of the band’s career so far?

Our EP release party was a helluva time. Savvy got to crowd surf while playing bass. Eric got his body licked as he tore through a solo. The whole band pretty much got groped and touched an insane amount. There were puddles of sweat afterwards. We held it in this remodeled loading dock/warehouse. Had the place packed, standing room only if you will.

If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?

Arctic Monkeys would be one killer rock show.
The Grateful Dead because hours and hours of jamming would be so special.
The White Stripes would also be a dream. Jack White is a monster musician.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

We are just so happy to be have the opportunity to play music and spread positivity. To all those who support us on our journey, thank you it means the world to us. Much love, and stay sweet ! - Kill The Music

"Spotlight on SWEET CAMBODIA and Their Funky Debut EP – ‘Tasty’"

We all love to put things in categories, whether music, books, or even people. Yet some things defy the parameters of all categories or genres, as is the case with today’s featured band. Sweet Cambodia ripped apart all possible labels, instead creating whatever feels good in the moment. That is their charm, and it works quite well for them.

Sweet Cambodia released Tasty, their debut EP, back in March. If I had to define the EP with one word, I’d say funky. They give us a laid-back groove, infused with some very cool guitar riffs. Their vibe has undercurrents of jazz, reggae, rock, and soul. Perhaps what most impresses me with these guys is their musical choices throughout each song. They take us to unexpected places, both lyrically and musically, never giving in to the expected formulaic songwriting. - Soundwaves Review


Still working on that hot first release.



Sweet Cambodia a progressive soul funk band from Orlando, FL. They bring a fresh rhythmic based sound that displays each of its members full musical abilities. On stage they are a chaotic science experiment of stage presence, and showmanship the likes of which are not easily matched. The play on elements of funk and soul laced with ska and reggae syncopation turns every performance into a party.

Band Members