In Conversation with…CAVE PAINTING

Cave Painting are a five piece from Brighton. Their music is serene and soothing, but also it’s moving and melodic, Cave Painting are a band that should be on your radar. Their music is so perfectly crafted it transports you to the beach, it’s so rich and compelling that you’ll be hearing the waves crash at your feet in no time. Brimmed full of lush synths and sounds of the ocean, soaring guitar lines, fruity bass lines, tropical keys, melodic drums and delicate yet enthralling vocals that wash over you like a tidal breeze, you can’t help but fall in love with this band. They make simply stunning musical masterpieces that will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression on you.

I caught up with guitarist Harry Smallwood from Cave Painting to discuss everything from the journey that they’ve been on as a band, since they formed in 2010, to the new material that they are currently working on as we speak. Read on to hear what he said.

Firstly, I’d like to say thanks for this interview. What’s one thing that we should all know about Cave Painting that we might not know about you now?

No thank you. I’m not sure how many dark secrets we’ve got really, we’ve got a few closet Crowded House fans in the band? We play bad Metallica covers at rehearsal? We made a short film about bread sticks whilst waiting for the euro tunnel at some ungodly hour? 

You released your debut LP, Votive Life, last September. Congratulations on that firstly, this album has propelled your music globally, you have a pretty big fan base overseas in the US and in Europe. What’s that like being a British band and being so successful over there, to see everyone’s taken so kindly to your music and really embraced it?

Thank you kindly for the congratulations. It’s always very nice to see people enjoying our music from some pretty distant corners of the globe (I personally enjoy seeing tweets from unusual places, El Salvador is a favourite, I’m pretty sure we’re massive in El Salvador). Obviously we’re delighted that anyone appreciates what we do, but I think we’re a long way from being satisfied. 

2013 has seen you play gigs in Belgium and the music industries festival heavyweight that is SXSW. How was that for you to play somewhere so iconic and as influential as SXSW and it must be great to be able to play shows overseas?

SXSW was a phenomenal experience, one that I can’t see any of us forgetting. Playing and seeing so many shows in a pretty short period of time was a lot of fun. And the free bars. Many free bars. 

So I hear you’re back in the studio working on some new material, you recently spent some time over the summer recording in a church as well. How’s the recording process going so far and can you give us a teaser into when it’s going to be released?

We’ve been writing a lot over the summer, primarily indoors, in dimly lit rooms, so it’s lucky we think the results are rather exciting. We’ve switched up the instruments a bit on some of these, there’s a bit more guitar, a bit more piano. We’ll be getting some of this new stuff out into this world very soon. 

Do you remember the first song you ever wrote together and if you do, can you tell us a bit about it?

We’ve been playing together for a long time now, in various forms, so I’m not 100% sure what our official first song we wrote together would be. I can remember very vividly the first time the five of us played together in a room, and even though it sounds inexcusably corny, it was a bit special. 

Are your songs all written from personal experiences or does inspiration come from anything and everywhere?

I think in some ways they are, not often literally but perhaps subconsciously. Inspiration usually comes from past experiences, both positive and negative.

When inspiration strikes are you one for opting for the pen and paper or do you reach for your phone?

My phone is full of lines and sentiments, so if not at home, I’d say my phone was the primary ideas bank. But you can’t beat good olde parchment and quill, if to hand. 

Cave Painting’s new song It Was Me, It Was You…have a listen

You’ve supported the likes of Alt-J previously, anyone else that you would love to tour with or share a stage with?

We are all massive fans of The National, they would probably be the dream band to support.

If you could create your dream line-up for a gig. Who would you choose to be on the bill?

The National would probably have to feature, Arcade Fire are very agreeable live too. 

What are your thoughts on the music scene in Brighton? There’s quite a vibrant music scene in Brighton from what I’ve heard, are there any venues you recommend checking out?

I went to quite a lot of gigs over the past year and would totally agree, Brighton has a lot of cool bands/artists coming out at the minute. Green Door Store is pretty excellent for new music (and is quite often free which can’t be argued with really), Sticky Mike’s is a good one, The Hope, The Prince Albert, there’s a whole stack of them.

We’re big supporters of new music here at Bitter Sweet Symphonies. Having said that, are there any new artists that have caught your attention recently that you’d like to share with us?

I’m pretty keen on Dog in the Snow, seen them play several times and they get me every time. They’ve got a real nice vibe, quite atmospheric, a little sinister. 

Do you have any tips for new bands starting out, any advice that you could give them?

Stay off our turf. Jokes aside, it’s probably the usual stuff, just work your balls off, be lucky, blah blah. And seriously, stay off our turf.


A special thanks to Cave Painting for this interview and for more info on the band, check out the following links below.

Website  .  Facebook  .  Twitter

Charlotte Holroyd
Editor, Creator and Founder of Bitter Sweet Symphonies. A lover of music and cinema, who's constantly attending gigs and in search of a great experience.

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