thisfamiliarsmile are a four-piece band from Glasgow in Scotland, playing rock music full of irregular timings, complex structures and yet manage to keep their music cohesive and melodic. Their new album enititled ‘Ribbons, Regards And The More Machine’ is available now. Hayley caught up with the band and had a quick chat with them…
Hey, thanks for agreeing to have a little chat to LGO.
No problem, thank for giving us the chance to ramble incoherently.
So, can you introduce yourselves, and tell us how you hooked up?
David – Vocals and Guitar, Darren – Drums and Vocals, Richie – Bass and Vocals & Neil – Guitar.
David: Basically me and Darren went to school together and we started the band with another guy at our school and our original guitarist who was Darren’s uncle (which is always our amusing and an odd fact). Eventually our original guitarist and bassist left to pursue more normal existences, not involving getting fired from jobs to go and play a one off gig in Germany or a two day run involving like, Stoke and Dumfries and such. We hooked up with Richie and Neil from playing gigs in our area with bands they were both members of, and from playing with them became friends, so it seemed like an easy transition really.
Darren: We all have day jobs at points, your usual unskilled stuff such as labouring, or waiting tables or working in call centres or being a barman, no offence to anyone working those jobs obviously ha ha.
Your new record has just come out, how does it differ from the EP that you put out in the early days?
David: Well, the album is just a natural progression from the e.p. really, the longer you’re doing it, your craft sorta gets better, so its a bit more focused then the e.p. a bit more strength of melody, we just tried to make an album that sounds like an actual album, not just a collection of songs like the e.p. was.
Are you planning on touring to promote it this summer?
Neil: Yeah, we’re hoping to get some tours together at the end of the year, it’s difficult as we know that in general we will end up out of pocket when we are touring like all small bands end up, so we have to make sure we have some money saved and such, but we will definitely be on the road later this year for a UK stint and most likely some Europe dates also.
Darren: Basically we recorded a song from the last e.p. put it up on the Myspace then contacted some labels and Lockjaw liked it, and were nice enough to sign us to their label.
Which bands have influenced you thus far?
David: A combination of a lot of stuff, a lot of old school emo such as Sunny Day Real Estate, Mineral, Elliot, some more aggressive bands, At The Drive-In, Refused, and a great love for more mathy based stuff, Owls, Faraquet etc. The lucky thing in the band is everyone is involved with the writing process, and we are all generally influenced by completely different styles, which is tough at some points but its good to approach things from a different angle out with the kinda stuff you’re listening to.
And which bands are you loving right now?
David: Really loving The Nationals new album High Violet, my fave album from 2010 so far, Maps and Atlases also, and really pleased that Far have brought out a new album after all this time.
How would you describe your sound to anyone who hasn’t had the pleasure of hearing you yet?
Richie: I’d describe it as a mix of the technical aspect of math rock but kept to a level where its still fully cohesive and lends itself easily to catchy melodies, a lot of strange song structures. We’ve generally never been fans of a verse chorus verse scenario we like to use more parts, better value for money that way. Basically it’s quite technical whilst still remaining fairly poppy and at times pretty intense.
Who has been your favourite band to play with so far?
David: Without a doubt Cursive, since they are up there with Sunny Day Real Estate, The Smiths and Shudder To Think as my fave bands, so its an absolute honour to play with someone who has sorta inspired you to play music really, went to see them twice in Glasgow before we got to support them so it was superb. and they were just damn lovely guys.
Richie: Hopefully we can get on the road as much as possible finances allowing, hopefully our video for Red Wine starts making the rounds on TV which would really help us, but basically just playing, playing, playing.
Neil: Also hoping to get another wee ep out at the end of the year, we left it 3 years between the ep and the album and it really set us back so we don’t want to make that mistake again. Thank you so much for taking to the time to chat to us!!
Official Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/thisfamiliarsmile
Official Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/thisfamiliarsmile/196057483164
Thanks to Hayley & thisfamiliarsmile. Interview performed July 2010.
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Posted on: Thursday, January 20th, 2011 at 11:07 am
Posted in: Online Exclusive