How are you this morning?
Yeah not so bad. Just on our way back home, we’re just on our first leg of the tour now.
Is it going well?
Yeah really well. We didn’t have much sleep last night. It’s our guitarist’s birthday so we were out ’til quite late but we had to get up and get back home early this morning so we’re a bit tired. No it’s been really good the first leg of the tour, it’s been great. Birmingham was sold out last night, so yeah, happy days.
Have you played in Newcastle before?
Yeah […] we’ve played twice. I think the first [gig] was part of Hit The North Festival and then we did our first headline show about this time last year, which was ace. Newcastle… I’ve been going up there since I was quite young really […] it’s always a great place to go and play. We’ve done a couple of festivals around Newcastle as well, we’ve done Hardwick Live, which isn’t many miles away.
So what can the Newcastle audience expect from you this time round?
Well last time we had a full 20 man stage invasion *laughs*. So I think something close to that yeah. It’s a proper rowdy gig, you know, plenty of catchy songs and it’s something we’ve found out on this tour […] the live shows really strike home with people. I think it’s something that even if you’ve never seen [us], you’ve never listened to us before or you might not have heard of us it’s definitely a great gig to go to. We’re always a lot of fun. For sure.
Hailing from the Manchester scene, alongside brilliant bands like Blossoms, is there a certain pressure to fit into the massive success of that indie music scene?
Definitely! Yeah I think it’s tough because every band kind of moves at their own pace. I started off playing with Blossoms in a small venue, I think it was the night they got signed actually. I’m still mates with them now. Obviously you’ve got The Blinders who’ve come out of Manchester recently, doing really well. But it just kind of pushes you more really because you have to live up to what these other bands are doing. Every band is gonna move at a different pace They’ll get different opportunities to what we get but we’ve just got to keep doing what we’re doing – keep our heads down cos at the moment it’s going pretty well. So yeah, like I say it’s important to have those bands around to push you and keep you on your toes really *laughs*.
What was the inspiration behind your reason to start a band in the first place?
I started off on my own just doing like a few acoustic songs in a pub really. Yeah eventually just started doing more and more shows. There wasn’t really any inspiration behind it, it kind of naturally happened. I fell into it really and then before I knew it […] I got a band and yeah eventually, with a couple of line up changes we ended up with a band we’ve had now for about two and a half years. […] But this is a band, this is what people get confused about a lot of the time. It’s not just a solo project now, there’s four of us *laughs*. So it’s definitely changed in that respect. But it makes for the better live gigs definitely.
Yeah you have built up a pretty good live performance record. I know you were supporting and touring with The Sherlocks, as well as playing at a few massive festivals like Reading and Leeds and like you said, Hardwick Live, and now doing your own gigs. I think I know the answer to this question already but do you prefer writing and recording in studios or going out on tour and playing live to audiences?
Oh yeah definitely going out on tour. We’ve had some great shows. We’ve done Isle of Wight, Kendal [Calling] this summer as well, which was brilliant. But yeah, festival season is amazing. You know last year I think we ended up doing about 16 [festivals], something daft like that. It was great. Obviously we had our first full headline tour last year and then we did a little bit of touring with the Bluetones earlier this year. This is the place where we love being. I do love being in the studio but you can’t capture the intensity and the craziness of being on tour.
It surprises every night. Like in Birmingham last night for us. It was a weird one because I think last time we went there we had a half full room and this time it was packed out full and everyone knew the words. So it’s nice now touring, we’ve worked really hard and we’ve done a lot, a lot, of shows. In those two and a half years we’ve done close to you know maybe 200 shows or something like that. So yeah it’s nice to see that hard work paying off for us. But yeah, definitely touring, we’re a touring band. I think you have to come and see us live before you can really get what we’re about.