The music of five-piece psychedelic indie band, Club Kuru, delivers mellifluous and melodic synths, creating vibes of enticing tranquillity with each song they play–and their performance on Friday the 2nd of November was no exception.
At the intimate venue of Sheffield’s Picture House Social, the band are in high spirits for the last gig of their debut headline tour. As the group approaches the stage, the anticipation of the room unfolds and the excitement begins to rise. The set list demonstrated a mixture of songs, from some of the more established tunes to a couple of brand-spanking new ones, which proved to be a hit with the audience as the entirety of the room consisted of peaceful sways from side to side.
Ahead of their captivating and atmospheric gig, I was fortunate enough to sit down with the two front men of the group, Laurie and Laurence to ask them a few questions.
First off, I just want to thank you for sitting down for the chat.
Laurie: “Our pleasure entirely.”
Tonight’s the last night of the tour, how has it treated you?
Laurence: “It’s been really good on the whole. Interesting to see where we’ve had a reception and how things have gone down in different cities. Overall, it’s exceeded expectations I would say. There’s a few places we anticipated to be a bit on the ground in terms of turn out but we’ve had lots of sell out to almost sell outs so it’s great.”
Laurie: “It’s really good, especially since it’s our first tour.”
Is there a bit more of a comedian in the band who keeps you entertained whilst on tour?
Laurence: “It’d have to be Lydia, wouldn’t it.”
Laurie: “She’s a real character.”
Emily, BSS: “Aw, girl power!”
Laurie: “Yeah, it can’t be that easy to be the only girl in a touring group of seven people of six boys and one girl but she’s a force to be reckoned with really. She’ll just march in to any social situation, any bar and just take over the room.”
Laurence: “She’s got quite a command about her.”
As we’re discussing tours I thought I’d mention that you were obviously on tour with ISLAND earlier on this year. How did you find that experience?
Laurie: “I think for us we just wanted to get some experience. It was good just to get out and play. They asked us like a week before and we were just like, alright, let’s go. Let’s get some momentum because we hadn’t really played that many shows up until that point. We got on really well and it was nice because they were really in to my music that I’d made before and they’d asked us to come so that made it a bit nicer, you know?”
Emily, BSS: “Yeah, definitely. It’s a feel good factor.”
Laurie: “Yeah, exactly.”
So, how did you all meet?
Laurie: “So there used to be a totally different set up completely. There still is a bass player called Fergus and he’s a member of the band and it’s kind of us three, but he’s had a lot of different things going on so he’s had to take sometime out. But yeah, it was about two and a half years since I met you [to Laurence]?”
Laurence: “Yeah there and there abouts.”
Laurie: “We didn’t have any of our music out, but this was with me and Fergus and some other guys who aren’t in the band anymore. We didn’t have a guitarist so we auditioned a guitarist, Laurence came to audition and then we just became really good friends. Now we live together and do the whole band together and sort of do everything together really.”
[Aww we do love a good bromance, don’t we?]
You live together and you’re in a band together, do you ever slightly get on each other’s nerves?
Laurence: “So far so good.” [laughs]
Laurie: “We don’t really argue at all. I think it’s fun because it’s like an adventure, isn’t it? You meet someone you don’t know at all and then a few months later you’re living together and sort of doing all these things and you’re kind of taking a massive chance on each other and it’s quite strange in life to do that.”
Since you’re so close, are you able to share a fun fact about each other that fans may not already know?
Laurence: “Oh s***, on the spot. It’s good to be put on the spot.”
Laurie: “I don’t want to be too mean.”
Laurence: “No I was thinking that.” [laughs]
Laurie: “Laurence is a bit of a hopeless romantic.”
Laurence: “Is that a fun fact? Umh, fun fact about Laurie, he’s not a hopeless romantic [laughs]. No, there is a romantic side to your personality it just comes out in a different way.”
Laurie: “I had quit drinking, that was my fun, really boring fact. but I went back to it for the tour. The tour really, that’s the only thing, it takes its toll doesn’t it? I’ve got gout, is that a fun fact? [laughs] It takes its toll on my gout.”
Your latest single ’49 Years’ came out in September. Can you tell us a bit of background history on it?
Laurence: “Well in terms of where it came from, I guess, just jam based. Just kind of messing around in the studio, which is quite a generic standard answer. Content wise, can you offer some from the lyrical side of things?”
Laurie: “I was watching this series of interviews with this philosopher called Joseph Campbell and there was a lot of talk about reciprocal progressions in life and how it’s very probable that everything is like a circle and you can’t get away from that. This moment, the next moment, life, death, rebirth, everything. I was sort of thinking about getting old, I think, and trying to piece some kind of narrative together about somebody who thinks that time is running out and some sort of cliché like that. Its very vague, really it’s just about somebody who’s not comfortable where they are, but they’ve got no good reason not to be comfortable and maybe they get to 49 and they look back and think s***, what have I done?”
I love the video for ’49 Years’. Did you actually jump off the bridge and into the water and if so, was it as cold as it looked?
Laurence: “Yeah it was really cold. It was about ten to seven in the morning so we got there at sunrise, probably at about half three, quarter to four, very early as it was in East London. We felt as though it probably wouldn’t work if there was all the commuters and if it started to get busy people will probably kick off. Incidentally, a guy did actually go pretty crazy when we dived off the bridge. He came out and he was not happy. It was pretty fun though, slightly gruelling but fun in hindsight.”
Laurie: “There was just us two and then the cameraman, that was it. We did it all in one morning and it was pretty fun, but you know, you don’t get that like slick, big music video vibe from it but I think there’s a charm to it. It’s simple and quite relaxing.”
Turning to your artwork, I personally really like it and I find it’s really fitting with your music. Where do you get the ideas and designs from?
Laurie: “Well I can say that the first EP we did, a friend of mine called Cat Hawker, who I used to live with, she was just like let’s throw something together. She’d got this friend of hers who was a model and I kind of wanted it to be like a tropical beach scene but I think that’s too obvious so [I said] lets make it like she’s in evening wear. Very simple idea really, lets not put her in a bikini, let’s put her in something like nightwear on a beach scene and that was quite nice. We really liked that so we thought let’s continue it . Cat went off, she got a job somewhere else so we just did it ourselves. We met this girl called Erica Bowes, we were in the pub and was chatting to her and it turns out she was like this Instagram famous model so we asked her if she’d be up for doing a shoot and then that was the artwork.”
A bit of a random question now, Halloween wasn’t a long ago. What’s your favourite horror movie?
Laurie: “I like Carrie. I like it because her mum calls her boobs dirty pillows but it is quite scary actually.”
Laurence: “The Shining just has to be mentioned. A go-to but sort of like the first time you watch it, I mean, I was absolutely horrified. It does go quite gory but essentially it’s the camera work following that kid. You’re so scared at seeing a kid on a tricycle going round the corridors of a hotel, it doesn’t need to be bloody.”
Lastly, can we expect anything from Club Kuru in 2019 and if so, what?
Laurie: “I think we’re planning to do another album. The thing is we’ve actually finished more than an album’s worth this year but we’re just trying to sort all the bits out. Because we don’t have a manager and we don’t have a label so we just do it ourselves, which takes a bit longer. It’s a lot more work for us but we do get it back. We’re definitely going to do an EP at the beginning of the year, or our absolute worst, a couple of singles. We do want to get another album out as soon as possible. The nice thing is we don’t know what it’s going to be yet and that’s really fun. That’s what I like about being in a band, you’re like, ‘we’re going to do this and it’s going to be like that’ but actually you have no idea at all. The line-up may change and the songs may change but that just makes it exciting.”
Keep up-to-date with the latest releases from Club Kuru by following the band on Spotify.