INDIGO (from l-r): Elliot Wilcox (vocals/guitar), Jim Windsor (drums)
INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN
Stoke-on-Trent alternative rock outfit Indigo may only be a two-piece, but their heavy blues rock sound, containing gritty guitar riffery, rapid drum beats and husky vocals, suggests that they can handle with ease what a lot of other bands would need another two or three members to accomplish.
Their debut single ‘Devil’s Treasure’ and live performances have both enjoyed universal acclaim, and it seems that it will only be a matter of time before the duo’s musical value soars to greater heights.
After playing a superb set at the Lymelight Festival in Newcastle-under-Lyme over the May Bank Holiday weekend, I chatted to them about their journey so far, and what the future holds for them.
How did the band get together initially?
ELLIOT WILCOX (vocals/guitar): Well, originally, we were at school, in a band called The Fortunas, and then a few years ago, me and Jim sort of got the thirst back for it.
JIM WINDSOR (drums): We missed it, didn’t we?
ELLIOT: We did miss it, so then we came back, just as a two-piece. We were going to have a bassist, but we didn’t need one in the end, as we got it sounding how we wanted to.
How did the name Indigo come about?
ELLIOT: We’ve actually got a song called ‘Indigo’, which I’ve just realised we missed off the set list tonight, so yeah, we have a song called ‘Indigo’, and we were both racking our brains trying to come up with a name for the band.
JIM: We wanted something one worded.
ELLIOT: Then, we said that we both liked the name Indigo, so we just decided to call ourselves that, and that was it.
In your own words, how would you describe your sound?
ELLIOT: Well, I don’t know how we would describe it, as shite, probably. I’m joking! However, other people have described it as garage blues rock, something like that.
JIM: We started off more bluesy, and we’ve gradually got more heavier as the sound has got bigger, so I would say now, it was more rockier.
ELLIOT: Yeah, I would say that as well.
What would you say were the band’s musical influences?
ELLIOT: Mutually, we like bands such as Band of Skulls…
JIM: Black Keys.
ELLIOT: Yeah, Black Keys, The Beatles, Arctic Monkeys, Jack White, The White Stripes, The Dead Weather, who are brilliant, as well as people like Robbie Williams, all the Motown stuff, The Rat Pack…
JIM: We have quite an eclectic range of influences.
What would you say was your approach to songwriting?
ELLIOT: Erm…I suppose it differs every time. Sometimes, I might come to…
JIM: You’re the main songwriter, aren’t you?
ELLIOT: Yeah, it usually starts off with a song that I might be writing, it may be acoustic, and then I will bring it to practice and we’ll see if we can get the sound right, because I think one thing with this band is that we have to work quite hard at getting the sound we want.
JIM: What with only one guitar.
ELLIOT: One guitar and drums, so we work quite hard on the sound. If it doesn’t sound right, it doesn’t make it, but yeah, we sort of write acoustically and then we’ll see how we can fit it in with the band’s sound.
The band are a part of the Stoke-on-Trent music scene. What is your current opinion of it?
JIM: I think it’s growing. There’s a lot of talent around here, and it deserves to be recognised a lot more than it does, but I think the guys behind the scenes are doing a great job showcasing the city’s music scene a lot more, and it is growing rapidly.
ELLIOT: I’d say that currently, the music scene around here is the best it has ever been since we started playing around ten years ago, whenever it was. We’ve got people like Lee Barber, who are so committed and work their fingers to the bone, so yeah, it is pretty strong at the moment.
How well do you think your music has been received up to now?
ELLIOT: I think we’ve had nothing but good reactions.
JIM: And it’s getting better as well. People seem to get us more now we’ve been around for a bit, because when we started, there wasn’t really anything like us around here.
ELLIOT: I feel we’ve improved as a band, and I think people have noticed that. They’ll come and watch us and say that we’re getting better and better each time.
JIM: The songs are progressing as well.
ELLIOT: Yeah, the songs are getting better, so I think people are reacting well to it.
You’ve just played a set here at the Lymelight Festival. How, for the band, is the experience of playing live?
JIM: It’s a buzz, isn’t it?
ELLIOT: It’s just a buzz, yeah. It’s like, we enjoy ourselves on stage and just go for it. It’s different when you’re playing in front of people, you can feel the adernaline pumping. I mean, a lot of the time after playing, I will just sit backstage on my own and chill out, because you’re buzzing, which is good whether you’re playing in front of two or 200 people.
JIM: It’s a great feeling knowing that people are coming to watch you play, it doesn’t matter whether the crowd is large or small.
ELLIOT: And when they’re enjoying it, like they were earlier, it’s even better.
What has the band got planned for the near future then?
ELLIOT: Short-term, we’ve got our next single coming out in June, I think it will be on the 17th, so that will be the next big thing for us. We’ve recorded another single to follow that later in the year, and then we’ll see what happens with them two, and where we can go from there.
What is your long-term aim?
JIM: We want to progress out of this area, at least.
ELLIOT: Yeah, I think we need to get out of the area, to be honest. As long as we keep enjoying what we’re doing, writing good music and stuff like that, I’m sure it will happen and eventually, we will get there.
We’ve had some really positive meetings recently with people from London and Manchester, so that’s been good. Hopefully, something will come out of them, but as long as we keep on creating good music and enjoying ourselves, we’ll see where the future takes us.
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