Friday, 26 August 2016

KBPS Interview: Marie Parie

With her anime-style appearance and quirky, catchy music, it’s difficult to not be wowed by French-American singer Marie Parie, whose electro-pop number ‘Ice Cream’ prepares to land in September. We caught up with the singer in La Rochelle the day after some of her songs got an exciting performance at a very special DJ night to ask her about her new single.

“It’s a fun song for people who get stressed out, to unwind, listen to and dance to. In Texas they say ‘Ass Cream’ (because of the pronunciation) so that’s where it came from. It’s the cultural shock of hearing the Texas accent!”

A summery track, the reception to ‘Ice Cream’ has been great. “People love it – kids, adults, everybody – because it’s very fun. Even the video is very fun with the futuristic Barbie doll and the prince.”

The video, for which there is a teaser currently up online, should be available nearer the end of September after everyone gets back away from the typical holidays of August.

Sticking with the visual side of Marie Parie’s music, we talked about her description of herself as an artistic alien. “That is a very interesting one! The alien is a reference to creating an identity for all the people who do not belong in a lot of places, and creating a space for them to feel safe and identify themselves, and believe in themselves, and do things beyond what their environment dictates.

“And that’s what I want to do as well. We all have this alien in ourselves, but we all can do miracles.”

Marie Parie is very influenced by Japanese anime and manga, shown in the promotion across her website and social media, which is something she has a big love for. “Manga always have these stories that are so touching, and a lot of them are from real life. Anyone can relate to a lot of it, but there’s also the fantastic, and futuristic, touches and I love that.

“As a child people always used to call me Barbie so at first it was annoying but now I’m playing with it, so I’m making a futuristic Barbie!”

With a French background to Marie Parie, this has an impact on how her music sounds. “I blend the two cultures together. For example dating was a cultural shock in the American system. Ice cream is a cultural shock about the Texan accent. Basically I put the two cultures together to create a fun song, but behind it there’s something that touches on society and the art of living.”

Marie Parie is working on a longer LP called ‘Blue Kiss’ which, appropriately, has songs of different flavours to that of ‘Ice Cream’. “It’s still dance and pop-dance, but I have a ballad as well. Some have Spanish flavours and influences on them, and one is Russian. It’s diverse!” she told us, referencing all the different cultures feeding into the record. “You have to listen carefully to know that I’m doing that. At first you just hear dance music and themes, but that’s what I do.”

A release date has yet to be set for the ‘Blue Kiss’ album as Marie Parie is hitting the promotional circuit for the single, enjoying strong chart positioning and new appearances on television and elsewhere in the media, including several American radio stations. The promotional work has also seen Marie Parie performing live around Los Angeles, and she hopes to tour in Europe later in the year. But what about other future ambitions?

“I can’t wait to drop the new single and I already have other singles and projects I’m working on, and I can’t wait to announce those!”

Saturday, 20 August 2016

KBPS Interview: Hunck

Hunck are a rock band from North London who have just released their new single ‘All Dressed Up’, which is one of the songs that made it onto our August 2016 playlist. We caught up with Freddie Tyson-Brown from the band and asked him about their new release.

“It’s an ode to modern dating troubles. It’s about getting dressed up and getting stood up! We’ve all been on dates where things haven’t gone right. It’s like an everyman’s song!”

The song is accompanied by a surprisingly good video considering its tight £60 budget. We asked Freddie how they managed this. “The limitations make it more exciting to do. We tried to make it as exciting as we could for as little money as possible. All we did was spend £60 on a green screen and a couple of lights, and I already had a camera. The paper mache heads were free as we just used copies of the Evening Standard which they give away free at all the tube stations for free!”

The heads, you’ll be glad to know, are still with the band. “We’re saving them for a rainy day,” Freddie confessed, before admitting that if it was raining they could well just melt onto their faces!

The band members have brought different influences to the record. Whilst member Thomas has a love of Frank Sinatra, Freddie prefers Al Boley.

Hunck recently performed a headline show at the Lexington in London and it went really well. “We managed to sell it out and we had a good laugh, it was a good night!” Freddie told us about their gig, confessing their gigs are louder, faster and more in the flesh.

Looking ahead, Freddie revealed that they have recorded an album’s worth of material and they hope to get this out by the end of the year. “We’ll see what happens. We’re just constantly writing new music, seeing how it goes, and then playing it out live, and seeing how people react to it.”

With reaction to the new single being positive so far, things are looking great for Hunck as a band. Looking ahead to the future Freddie would like the band to continue playing more shows and making more music and something a little bit different based on Freddie’s favourite sport.

“I want to write a darts songs for the next darts season coming up at the end of the year. Hopefully we’ll have a darts number one by the end of the year when the World Championships happen. That’s my goal!”

Find out more about the band at where their hilarious biography is well worth reading!

KBPS Interview: Heartracer

Brothers Chris and Chip Cosby and Bryan Reyes make up American band Heartracer. In one of our favourite interviews of recent weeks, we spoke to the enthusiastic brothers from the band ahead of them performing a live date as they revealed to us about exciting developments in their live shows both musically and visually.

“We’ve been expanding our live lighting set-up. Tonight will be the first time we’ll be busting that out! We have a giant LED motion drape and a guy has been programming the drape to each song, and we have light-bars that look like giant light-sabres which will go with the music as well. We’re just going to continuously keep adding onto that!”

Heartracer have a new single out called ‘Hollow’, which they describe as a cathartic anthem, building from a slow start to a crescendo. “By the end there’s this emotional release or breakthrough. I’m not sure if that was entirely intentional but we like the way it worked out.”

Inspiration for the song came from multiple sources. Chip told us about the inspiration for his guitar working, citing Pink Floyd’s Dave Gilmour and British band The Alarm. “I’m a big fan of British music,” he confessed mentioning Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music as their favourites. “I’m coming to over the UK in ten days to visit friends” he revealed.

Chris expanded on the influences, referring to them listening a lot to rock band ‘The War on Drugs’. “It sounds like if The War on Drugs were a more electronic, retro band. We’re trying to keep the natural instruments alive so we brought in the acoustic guitar and Bryan’s drumming, so we think it’s turned out well.”

The brothers are big fans of 1980s culture, which influences their music, mentioning Tears for Fears, Simple Minds and the Pet Shop Boys. In terms of favourite movies they talked about the John Hughes movies and also Chip’s large collection of 1980s horror movies. “Apparently when I was brought home as a baby he was watching Bloodsport with Jean Claude Van Damme, and that soundtrack is incredible. I found out years later that the person who wrote the script for the movie was called Christopher Crosby!”

Though there will be no music video for song ‘Hollow’, there will be one for upcoming single ‘Dream Girl’, which is taken from their upcoming EP out in September called ‘Eat Your Heart Out’. “We’re working with a director called Lucas Krost, who reached out to us originally about using one of our songs – Open Door, from our ‘Summer Gold’ EP – on a short film he was making.

“He’s been at the Cannes film festival. He drew up a script for the ‘Dream Girl’ video and though I don’t want to say too much about it there’s definitely a political message entwined in the love story between a girl and a guy. They’re trying to influence a senator on gun laws. As you know the United States has a pretty big epidemic now with guns. We’re trying to hardness a point in the video.”

The brothers said they weren’t political as a band, though Chris does have a Political Sciences degree. “I don’t want it to be forced. I think it can happen naturally at times. To me the gun issue isn’t even a political one it’s a rational one. When you have this many people getting shot every day, you don’t even need to have a political opinion on it, you just need to think rationally.”

Moving away to their live sound, the brothers confirmed they had a very high-energy live sound. “We do like to make it clear that though the 80s sound influences us it’s not as much a conscious effort on our part. That’s the era that we love but we are a contemporary band, and live we’re like the Killers or Brandon Flowers, with a little 1975. It’s an upbeat show, and I think we take people on an emotional rollercoaster with some of the ballads that we do, like ‘Light of Day’ which is probably my favourite song from our first record, which is another song that starts slow and at the end it crescendos.

“I get compared to the lead singer of the Pet Shop Boys a lot.”

Their upcoming EP – ‘Eat Your Heart Out’ has been completed. “It was a very meticulous effort. We thought it was going to be done much quicker than it was but we wanted it to be perfect, which it obviously never will be! We worked with Andreas on production. The core of the songs were all tracked in my home studio and then we took everything over to him and go through each sound and polish everything. He said it was the longest he’d worked on anything, and he’s done full length records, and this is just a 5-song EP.

“We’ve got a tonne more songs that we’re ready to record so we’re going to get back to it as soon as we can!”

We asked them if the song writing and recording process was something they enjoyed doing, an answer that was started with emphatic yes. “If you don’t enjoy that aspect of it then you probably should be in the business. There’s a lot of things in the music business that isn’t too appealing but that part and performing live are great.

“Just the song-writing for me is my favourite part. I don’t think there’s a better high for me in the world than when a song finally comes together.”

Having access to a home studio has helped them with this process. When Chip returned from California they had a clutch of songs to work on, the recorded helped by purchasing Pro Tools. “I had no idea what I was doing, but you can see the progression from ‘In Flight’ to ‘Summer Gold’. Everything we do is self-produced for the most part so you can get an idea on how we’ve progressed with song-writing and production, and I think our fans can connect with that. They like to see our progression, that we’re not a band just shot out of the marketing test tube! I think on our newest EP you’ll hear that even more. We’re even more refined!”

Looking to the future Heartracer said they’d love to come to the UK, an area that often has a bigger appreciation for live music than necessarily on their home turf.

“It can be tough over here!” Chris confessed. “Good music tends to have more success in the UK. It depends on where you go. I think it’s our sound. Every time we play people say we should be playing in Europe, playing with Coldplay or something!”

Alongside their hopes with Europe we asked them about their ambitions for the future. “If there’s one thing we have it’s not a shortage of ambition. Our ambitions go way beyond what they should. We have faith in our music and we think the songs are there. To me the most fun things would be to tour Europe and play shows!”

For more information on the band and to hear their music visit 

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

KBPS Interview: We Are Z

We Are Z are an indie-pop band with members from London, Paris and Toulouse who have a new single out called ‘Goldigaz’ on the 30th September on the same day as a launch party at Cargo in Shoreditch, London.

Here at KBPS we spoke to member and lead singer Gabriel “Gabby” Cazes and began be asking him to describe the new single.

“It’s a song about money and what we do with money, all the thing that comes with the idea of money. It describes the world of finance and drugs and, in a way, all the negative things that can come with it.”

The song takes inspiration from recent events and stories from people they have met in different places. “For example you go and play in Russia and you end up in a club with really rich people that don’t know what to do with all the power they have, and it’s really inspiring to be around people like that!”

With the band’s press release boasting them to be an ideal band for a post-Brexit world, I asked them if they would be flying the flag for Europe.

“Maybe! Why not?” he told us before moving on to talk about the themes of decadence in the song’s video.

“It’s like the film Wolf of Wall Street. I think there’s an idea behind the decadence that comes with the idea of money. Of course we can’t do anything without money so we have to deal with it; it’s the fight between these things.”

Making the video for ‘Goldigaz’ was, according to Gabby ‘crazy’ but fun to make, like a two-day party. “We did a collaboration with two Icelandic directors who came to Paris and we did two days of crazy shooting in some houses and outside Paris, and for the occasion we dressed up as pimps and we put on wigs and make-up and we brought fake Chinese music to throw around.

“[The video] is quite colourful and really extreme and it was really intense, the whole experience.”

Listening to the music of ‘We Are Z’ makes it clear that they have a wide range of influences. “We all come from different places in terms of music. From my side I was raised in France so I listened to a lot of French music like Serge Gainsbourg and then I started to listen to rhythm and blues [at quite a young ago], American bands and roots, black music and then a phase of jazz music, and then I started to listen to some seventies rock and roll!

“I have modern influences too. I really like Damon Albarn and all the different projects he does, but you can always recognise his sound, and I’d love to achieve something like that, being recognisable but with influences.”

‘We Are Z’ are working now on their new album called ‘Z Is Not X’. Gabby gave us an update on the project. “We’ve finished with all the songs and we’re in the mixing process and trying to find the visuals, which I like to work on. It’s like being pregnant, and that the child is going to come in a few weeks and you have to be ready for it, and you want it to be really great. But it’s really exciting. It’s our first album and we think it’s going to be great!”

With the album out at the start of  November, the band are taking part in a 25-date tour with Detroit rockers Electric Six in the same month, which came about through a meeting with the band’s tour manager. “He really liked us and he said if we want to do it it’s hear for us. We said yes, totally. We actually opened for them in Islington last year and it went very well, so we are excited to do this tour.

“It’s going to be the biggest tour we have done so far, so it’s going to be very intense and exciting!”

Describing the band’s live sound as ‘very lively’, Gabby said the live versions make their songs even more dynamic. “We put on a show, with costumes on stage, and we really try to grab the crowd and make people dance. We like to make it happen!

“All the subjects of the songs are quite heavy, observational songs about the human zoo, so we want to party on those heavy subjects. When you come to a show, you’ll be jumping around and seeing us going crazy and throwing fake money at the crowd, and big explosions!”

Looking ahead, the band are keen to continue doing more touring and perhaps festivals next summer and touring Europe. “We’ll be writing songs, meeting the crowds, being inspired, doing great songs and great shows. The live experience is really important to us, and we just want to tour a lot!” 

Saturday, 13 August 2016

KBPS Interview - Beauty Sleep

Beauty Sleep are a three-piece dream-pop band from Belfast, made up of Ryan McGroarty, Cheylene Murphy and Aimee Williamson. Starting up six months ago, they’ve just released their second single and we spoke to Ryan about ‘Living Right’ and how he would describe the track.

“It was probably the first song we’d written as a band and we’ve only been for six months so it’s all quite knew, so I guess it became the first song where we were discovering the sounds we were going to make and the type of band we’re going to be, so it’s a special song to us, and always will be.

“It’s just joyous and explosive, and so much fun to play. I’m glad people can finally hear it!”

We wondered if this single was different to their first release as a band.

“We’ve only put out one other single at this point so we’re just trying to give everyone an overview stylistically of the different areas we’re into. When you’re a new band it feels like you can surprise people.

“We’re getting there now. People at some point don’t know what to expect so it’s a fun process!”

Though Ryan said they didn’t have any plans for a video for this release there are exciting future ideas coming up. “We have bigger plans for our next release. We did get some beautiful artwork from a young artist called Jack Coulter. He’s interpreted the song as an image which is really interesting. But no plans for a video at the moment.”

Future plan? “It’s fun putting out a single but at this point it would be fun putting something more substantial out there, something that runs together. I think it will be an EP, that’s a good way to start it. So we’re going to track that pretty soon. The songs are there.

“After playing live, that changes you, so I guess we’ll be doing the recording in a more live-style, so I think that will come back again to it, and we’ll make sounds of microphones falling over and cymbals crashing, that kind of excitement is what we’re after!”

‘Beauty Right’ have so far done around a dozen live dates including recent festivals and they like to do different things to keep things fresh. “We have two different types of live set. We have one with a drummer, a friend of ours. He’s amazing and that excitement of playing small rooms where there’s loads of people, and it’s all happening and everyone’s moving, is really exciting, and we do like to do that.

“But we also have a more electronic set which has more computer elements to it, and has drums loops, and that’s a different feeling as well. I’m not sure which is best and sometimes we just call it depending on the show which one will be more suitable, so it’s good to give these two different sides and presenting the music in two very different ways.”

Gigs for the band coming up include Belfast on the 20th August. “It’s like a big barbecue show in the Queen’s Students’ Union with loads of local bands we’re friends with and it’s going to be like a two-stage festival. If you’re in Belfast that day it’s going to be really fun!

“When people only hear recordings they never know what to expect. It’s hard to picture a rock band, or what it is. Aimee who plays bass in the band is a visuals designer as well so there’s a really big light show usually with lots of moving elements. It’s coming together!”

Visual elements are a big part of the band and how they like to put themselves across. “We worked with this artist called Maisie Cousins on the artwork for ‘The Dark’, our first single, which had lots of luscious shots of running colours. I guess it was almost psychedelic imagery. We wanted to present a visual that whenever you saw it you’d have an idea of what the band sounded like and you’d make up your own image of what it’d be.

“I think [music and visuals] is really important, and both complement each other, and it’s a big part of what we want to get across.”

And what are the future plans for the band? “A tour would be something to hope for. Personally it’s the main reason why I’m in a band as every time I’ve been before those experiences you have of going to places you’d never normally be, meeting people who’d never otherwise meet, and the stories that you get, are the things I treasure. It would be great to do these things with the band at this time, because it’s absolutely the most exciting part in lots of ways.

“So get out there, get on some planes and boats and play to some un-expecting public somewhere!”

Find out more about the band on Facebook and check out their Soundcloud where you can hear various tracks and remixes, offering different interpretations on their sound.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

KBPS Interview: Gringo Star

Peter Furgiuele, Nicholas Furgiuele, Jonathon Bragg and Josh Longino make up band Gringo Star from Atlanta. With their album ‘The Sides And In Between’ out on 26th August via NevadoMusic we spoke to member Pete, co-founder of the band with his brother Nick, on the eve of the band heading out on a massive two-and-a-half month tour to talk about their new album. Their longest tour to date, Pete was excited about their upcoming time on the road, coming twenty years after first writing music with his brother as teenagers.

Describing the band’s live sound as rock and roll with a bit of garage, he was keen to emphasise their diverse sound. “We try to incorporate more than one approach when we’re writing, so it’s a range of melodic rock and roll.”

Talking about the record Pete told us “It’s a continuation of where we’ve been going. We had a slightly different approach this time as we did it in our own studio which we’ve been building for the last couple of years. Last year on tour I got really lucky. We randomly went into a gas station which was out west in casino country and on a whim I put twenty bucks into a slow machine and won almost $6000 on the jackpot!

“We were heading to LA. We have a really good engineer friend out there who has worked on some of our past records. He helped me secure a couple of pieces of nice audio equipment and it really helped us solidify the studio and bring the quality up to a nice level.

“That really helped with the overall sound of the record. We’ve done things on our own before and it’s been a little dirtier. This one is still dirty, but it’s a little bit cleaner!”

The band have also been working on new arrangements and involving their friends, incorporating instruments like a violin, saxophone and mandolin into the mix. “We tried to be a bit orchestral and mix up the sounds.”

Gringo Star’s latest album was recorded in a couple of months in their home studio, a process Pete described as fun.  Featuring newish member Jonathon Bragg on drums, Pete saw the record as an evolution. “It’s progressed more. I feel confident, we all like it, and it’s our best album yet.”

Their own studio has given the band the freedom needed to really work on the album. “Just having more time and less pressure to really get things how we want them [is great]. Sometimes when you’re in the studio and you have a limited amount of time [to record vocals] and people are waiting for you, you sometimes have to be like ‘that’s good enough’, but with this we could spend enough time to get vocal takes as we wanted them, which is kind of a luxury.”

With more time for experimentation and getting a more instrumental feel thanks to getting their friends involved, the studio seemed to have given the band more freedom on the record, and Pete, when we asked him to pick his highlights from the album, seemed genuinely happy with lots of the tracks, mentioning opener ‘Rotten’ alongside ‘Heading South’, ‘Get Closer’, ‘Knee Deep’, which included the violin, and ‘Going Home’. “For me that’s a really personal song. I get a good feeling from it. It’s called ‘Going Home’ but it actually feels like home to me, as it’s an honest song.

“We tried to mix things up so no two songs were the same. It’s an approach we’ve always had, but we tried to make it so you’re listening to the same band but not the same song ten times. So each song has its own character.

“We like a lot of styles. We like to incorporate a lot of different rhythms and arrangements, but there is a certain way we do things. I think there’s a common thread they all have; it’s pretty cohesive even though we mixed it up.”

Pete revealed a video for ‘Get Closer’ has recently been filmed and is currently being edited ready for release soon. He talked to us about the video, created by the same director who did the promotional video for ‘Rotten’. “He has great ideas. He brought with him a 16mm camera, and we did it all on real film, which we were really lucky to have the opportunity for. The video has quite a dreamy look to it, and he used some older Kodak film and there’s still grain left on it. It’s not an effect, it’s the natural film. It’s pretty cool and his editing has been great so far, with some techniques to make things look slow and frantic, but going with the music. It was done on a really sunny day and is a really sunny video!”

And what plans do the band have for the future? “We really hope to come to Europe,” he told us, talking about early 2017. “Nevada Records have a branch in Europe so we’d really like to go and support the album there. And to keep pushing on this album.

“With our manager and label combined I feel like we have our most cohesive team together to go out and tour and be the best supported we have been.”

‘The Sides And In Between’ by Gringo Star is out on 26th August via NevadoMusic. Find out more about them via their website.

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Top 50 of 2016 So Far

As we are now well past the half-way point of the year, here is our current countdown of the best 50 songs of the year so far, as chosen by KBPS!

50 Shawn Mendes - Treat You Better (3rd June)
49 The Allergies feat. Andy Cooper - Rock Rock (25th March)
48 Jamie Lynn Spears - Sleepover (24th June)
47 Lola Coca - GQ (22nd April)
46 April Towers - Silent Fever (8th April)
45 Louise Aubrie - Winter Delour (21st January)
44 Skyler feat. Snoop Dogg - Fire (29th January)
43 Sia feat. Sean Paul - Cheap Thrills (11th February)
42 Richard Ashcroft - This Is How It Feels (1st March)
41 Coldplay - Up&Up (16th May)

40 Frances - Say It Again (30th June)
39 Justin Timberlake - Can’t Stop the Feeling (6th May)
38 Pink - Just Like Fire (16th April)
37 twenty one pilots: Heathens (21st June)
36 Taylor Swift - Out Of The Woods (12th January)
35 Josef Salvat - Paradise (8th January)
34 Rick Astley - Angels On My Side (9th June)
33 Busted - Coming Home (3rd May)
32 Holly Johnson - Ascension (18th March)
31 Hannah Trigwell - Another Beautiful Mistake (15th April)

30 Dagny - Backbeat (6th May)
29 Will Joseph Cook - Girls Like Me (12th February)
28 Walk the Moon - Work This Body (12th February)
27 Teddybears feat. Gorilla Zoe - Best You Ever Had (8th January)
26 Tegan and Sara - Boyfriend (7th April)
25 MIAMIGO - Everyone I Know (18th March)
24 Kirsty Churchill - Who You Gonna Call? (16th March)
23 Juno im Park feat. Hannah Trigwell - Never Gonna Give You Up (28th July)
22 Axwell Λ Ingrosso feat. Pharrell Williams - Dream Bigger (6th May)
21 Elle King - Good Girls (3rd June)

20 Florrie - Real Love (5th February)
19 Jazz Mino - Suffocate (24th June)
18 Ward Thomas - Guilty Flowers (29th July)
17 Christine and the Queens - Tilted (26th February)
16 Tiggs Da Author feat. Lady Leshurr - Run (12th January)
15 Zara Larsson - Lush Life (15th January)
14 DNCE - Cake By The Ocean (14th March)
13 Bright Light Bright Light feat. Elton John - All In The Name (1st July 2016)
12 Bastille - Good Grief (17th June)
11 Rat Boy - Move (12th January)

10 Tom Odell - Magnetised (15th April)

9 Kaiser Chiefs - Parachute (20th June)

8 Gwen Stefani - Make Me Like You (13th February)

7 Nina Nesbitt - Chewing Gum (11th January)

6 The Shires - Beats To Your Rhythm (29th July)

5 The Strumbellas - Spirits (11th January)

4 Aurora - Conqueror (11th March)

3 Elle King - America’s Sweetheart (22nd April)

2 Glass Animals - Life Itself (18th May)

1 Travis - Magnificent Time (22nd March)

What do you think of our selection? Post your comments below and we'll follow them up in our next edition!

We did ask a few of our fellow music lovers and there was love for some in our Top 50 including DNCE's 'Cake By The Ocean', Sia's 'Cheap Thrills' and Bastille's 'Good Grief' and lots for 'Tilted' by Christine and the Queens.

For the rockier amongst you we had votes for Raise Your Horns - Amon Amarth; Master of the Land - Grand Magus, Suckerpuch - Delain (which got multiple recommendations) and Born to Die - Black Stone Cherry, and Sia made another appearance this time with 'Unstoppable'. 

Jake Bugg appeared with 'On My Own' alongside Twenty One Pilots and 'Stressed Out', plus the collaboration between Mumford + Baaba Maa. Elsewhere was 'Once Again' by Mad Clown and Kim Na Young, Ruth B with 'Lost Boy' plus JME's 'The Very Best' and the eccentrically titled 'Party Metal' by Footprints In The Custard. 

So even you don't like many in my selection here are some more choices for you to check out!

KBPS Interview: Future Generations

Future Generations are an alternative /Indie Pop/ Electronic band from New York and we spoke to lead singer Eddie Gore and the other members of the band Eric, Mike, Dylan and Devon as they travelled up to Washington DC. The band have a great new single out called ‘Thunder in the city’.

So how would you describe the single?
It’s one of those songs that you listen to when you’re walking down the street and think, this is kind of narrating my walk! It’s just a feel good song, it’s an exciting song, it’s got a great hook. It’s all about the hook for us.

The song was written near the end of the album recording process; what was the inspiration behind the song?
I was on a commute back from the city out to Long Island and it was about to storm, and it was just a kind of surreal journey. At the time I was very happy and thought [the storm] was cool. I’d had a good day and I thought I’d write a song about the feeling I was having.

What was the album like to record?
The album was recorded over a long period of time. We recorded a lot of it in our dorm room at University. Then we played it back and a lot of songs we had, we added drums, synthesizers and other instruments in the studio. It was a longer, spread out process but when we were in the studio it was really nice as we had a positive mind-set and we were trying to be cohesive.

The album has some distinctive artwork. How did that come about?
It was something the record came up with. There’s another band on the label called Decoration and I believe it was their singer’s good friend [called Nicole] and she did a couple of different ideas, and we were drawn to this one particular idea with the vibrant colours and the mix between new and retro.

You recently played a record launch party at the Mercury Lounge in New York; how did that go?
It was great, so lit! We had a packed house and everybody was having a good time, especially us!

You have live dates coming up this month. How would you describe your live sound?
It’s definitely fuller, more guitar and bass-guitar heavy than the album. Like any album that’s brought to life is fuller and louder. We always say it has more of an edge and more energy to it live. It’s a different experience live, which is our goal.

So how did you all meet?
Four of us met at University. Myself [Eddie], Mike and Eric met in freshmen year in our dorm, and Dylan we met on Craigslist. We’re very thankful that he’s not murdered us yet. Shout out to not murdering people. And now we live together!
Dylan: I have murdered but decided I’m going to ride with these guys.

Speaking of living arrangements, I believe you all share a flat together. What’s it like making music together and living together?
It’s great. We’re always sharing music that’s inspiring us. We don’t have much time when we’re all in the apartment together but when we are we’re usually just hanging out and listening to music, and sharing with each other. Have you heard this, have you heard that. It’s been good to open each other up to different styles of music.

Do you have any big ambitions for the rest of 2016?

To come across the pond, we want to come and play for you guys! We just want to play as many gigs as possible and build our audience by playing those shows. Some festivals next year would be nice. We just want to play as much music as possible, that’s really our end goal.