Behind the Beats of Demi Lovato's Simply Complicated: Five Things to Know About Fox Wilde
Michael and Demitri Lerios of Fox Wilde scored the music for Demi Lovato's new documentary, Simply Complicated
Michael and Demitri Lerios eat, sleep and rock.
Brother duo Fox Wilde is a little bit pop, a little bit electronic and a little bit country when it comes to composing music for icons like Demi Lovato and writing for James Maslow, but when they hit the studio for themselves, they’re all rock n’ roll.
Here are five things you need to know about the Los Angeles-based band:
1. Beats have been boiling in their blood since birth.
The Lerios brothers were born with an ear for music and hands that became stuck on an instrument at all times. Growing up with their musician father Cory Lerios, who is a founding member of the platinum-record-selling soft rock band Pablo Cruise, Michael and Demitri “just followed his footsteps” into the rockstar life.
“I was originally a guitar player and Demitri ended up playing drums, so that started the jam sessions between us,” Michael tells PEOPLE about getting his start in the music industry. “I was 12 when I started and Demitri was 9.”
“Hanging out with your little brother when you’re older is kind of like, ‘Eh’ but since we would play music it was different because it was somebody that I could jam with,” he continues. Demitri adds, “I was into it because I wanted to hang out with him! I didn’t really get into music until I was probably 15 – that’s when I started to enjoy it.”
After their first pop band didn’t work out, “We were looking at each other like, ‘What do we do with our lives?’ It was this moment where all we really knew was music, and it was a no-brainer in a sense,” Demitri explains of how Fox Wilde came to be. “I was driving one day and I thought of this name ‘Fox Wilde’ as a character — it turned into almost an alter ego. It was this cool, ultra-confident guy who was a James Bond type of character.”
2. They’re jacks of all trades – and masters of all!
The Lerios brothers, who were previously members of another band called The New Officials, write and produce all of their own music from the studio of their Los Angeles-area home.
“Being with a label was really great, but it hindered us creatively,” says Michael. “It was our education because we were with the best top producers and writers for music, and we didn’t really have that skill set at that time. We were searching for who we were.”
After creating their first three love-inspired singles “Soap,” “The Lonely Inn” and “Rosé and Veuve” –all very much pop-based – the Lerios brothers wrote their fourth single “Life,” which will be the first to land on their upcoming album and is available for download on iTunes now.
“Those first three songs we were trying to figure out our writing style and it was kind of an ode to everybody we worked with,” says Demitri. “We really figured out where we wanted to go after the first three songs we wrote.”
“Life,” which was released just weeks ago, is their “transition into this more sophisticated, edgier sound with a heavier subject,” being written about two of their best friends – and also brothers – whose lives were taken too soon in a car accident just last year.
“When that happened, it was around the same time we were working on our musical transition, so we wrote this song in memory of them,” says Michael. “It’s very timely because there are so many things like that happening to so many different people; you hear something new on the news every single day.”
3. They’re in with the Lovatics!
Aside from scoring the tunes behind many of Demi Lovato’s advertisements for companies like NYC New York Color and Ember Technologies in the past, the Lerios brothers most recently scored the music for her new documentary, Simply Complicated, which was released in October.
“We had been working with the director, Hannah Lux Davis, who was also the director for Simply Complicated,” says Michael. Demitri adds, “We sent in some test pieces for the documentary and we were lucky enough that they liked the music.”
“It was very cool writing the background music for it,” Michael continues. “They wanted it to be pop-contemporary music, but they also wanted an underscore tone. For some of the workout scenes, they needed some dub-step electronic stuff, so that was fun to do. We never got to meet her, but we did go on tour with her for our last band, so it really came full circle.”
4. And they’ve also put a pen to paper for many other notables in the music industry.
“James Maslow just came out with a video for a single we wrote for him,” says Michael. “We wrote two singles – “Addicted” and “Who Knows” – for his album How I Like It and “Wasted Youth” for Rebecca Black’s RE/BL album.”
The brothers have also produced music for globally known companies like Clean and Clear, Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), The Black Tux, Viacom and more.
And when it comes to stepping outside of their pop-rock genre, Demitri tells PEOPLE they love the “challenge.”
“We love writing all types of music, so it’s really cool when they ask us to write stuff out of the box of what we’re used to,” he says. Michael adds, “We did a country song the other day!”
5. Demitri discovered his hidden talent — singing — just two years ago.
“When we were in [The New Officials], I never played drums on the record because it was too expensive, so I was just visually the drummer – they were using me for my looks!” Demitri says with a laugh. “It wasn’t actually until right before we broke up with the band — Michael and I wrote three songs and I was singing on them.”
He continues, “We were up in our home studio working on something different and I was like singing something, and he was like, ‘Hey, go in there and start singing.’ I started singing — and I’ve been singing for two years now.”