THE SOURHEADS (from l-r): Mik Crone (guitar), Chris “Lammy” Lambert (drums), Jake Coxon (vocals), Ben Taylor (bass)
INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN
Since forming early last year, The Sourheads have impressed many with an intense, spellbinding sound that spans a wide variety of genres, ranging from blues to noise rock, and takes influence from both the great rock bands of the 60s and 70s, and more contemporary alternative outfits.
With this, as well as their explosive live shows, the Yorkshire four-piece have amassed a loyal following throughout the UK and across Europe.
Having recently released their debut album, ‘Care Plan For The Soul’, I chatted with the quartet’s bassist, Ben Taylor, about how it was put together, as well as everything else they have been up to.
How did the band get together?
I joined after I was recommended by a mate that I should be in a band with these guys, as they share a similar world view to me…. So I hung out at a practice and jammed and it all fitted together from there.
I still remember walking in to the studio seeing Jake just in leather jeans, no top, screaming lyrics with a bottle of red wine in his hands, and Lammy laughing his tits off at something Jake had just done…. I thought, these are my kinda crazy….
From where did the name The Sourheads originate?
To be honest, The Sourheads were called that way before I joined, but I recall it being a description of who they were as people. Slightly sourer about life and brought together to make some dirty rock n’ roll. Both Mik and I definitely fitted that description before we joined..
What would you say was the band’s songwriting approach?
Different every time. I don’t believe there’s a science behind songwriting. We do it on feeling. I may have a bassline that Jake will vibe off, or Mik will have a crunching riff we jam to, or even Jake will have a sentence he likes and that is brought to the table and built on….
For me, it’s about the feeling/connection with each other as we try something new. We all know instantly if it’s good……….or terrible….
What inspires the band lyrically?
Totally Jake’s domain, but we discuss his ideas at practice, throwing hooks back at him…..His inspiration, though, and I don’t want to talk for him too much, in my view, comes from his dreams, artwork, experiences he has gone through, (Good, bad and indifferent…) along with a sense wanting to put how he feels down on paper…
You recently released your debut album, ‘Care Plan For The Soul’. How was the recording process?
Technically a challenge…but for daft reasons. We recorded live as it was, for me, the only way to capture us properly. Split track recording would have resulted in something blander and not true to who we are. So, we recorded live, but in different rooms!
The challenge with doing this was that we couldn’t see each other properly, and even though we knew the songs inside out, it did prove difficult!!
However, all in all, it grew us as a band… the feeling of growing and nurturing something. Giving the songs the time they deserved was interesting and hopefully resulted in something people will enjoy….
How has the reaction been to it so far?
Good. We aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, though. We aren’t really pushing boundaries with sounds or recording processes, but for us, that doesn’t matter. We are true to ourselves and write and play music we like…The positive reviews and energy we see in the crowd, when we play live, feels like an added bonus.
The band have become known for their explosive live sets, and have also gained a loyal following through this, both in the UK and across Europe. How, for you, is the experience of playing live and touring?
Live shows are what we are about. Jake’s energy as a frontman, Mik’s riffs are like being hit by a truck, and Lammy’s grooves all inspire me to give more on stage… We live and breathe for it.
There’s simply a sense of fun, we have a “because we can” attitude to it…. I just love, and feel humbled, that some people have taken the time out of their lives to come to a show.
What are the band’s plans going into 2018?
More writing, more gigs, more beer, more guitars, more demons, more soul – less dull.
What is the band’s long-term aim?
Difficult to say. We do this because we want to…. We all have our own lives with different pressures, but the band is a place where all that burns away. It’s just four of us, in a room, making some dirty rock n’ roll. I don’t want that to change and I am sure the boys don’t either. Viva la Sourheads or something…..
‘CARE PLAN FOR THE SOUL’, THE DEBUT ALBUM FROM THE SOURHEADS, IS NOW AVAILABLE TO STREAM AND PURCHASE.
FURTHER INFO ON THIS, AND THE BAND, CAN BE FOUND HERE.