You Me At Six – Interview

Undoubtedly at the forefront of British Rock, You Me At Six have certainly excelled themselves, aged only 21-22 the pop-punk sensation have taken the UK by STORM, breaking into mainstream markets, touring the world and playing alongside some the worlds most well-known bands. I interviewed Guitarist Max Helyer to find out more about their success.
5 years ago did you ever anticipate how successful the band would be?

We never expected anything really, we wanted something to do in our spare time and music was something we were very fond of and enjoyed. To go from practicing in bedrooms and cheap studios to being a full-time band touring the world isn’t really what you expect when you start a band. The way I see it as is when you start a band you don’t think about being the biggest band in the world, you just want to concentrate on writing good songs that you enjoy and being a good musician.

At what point did you realise your music was being accepted in the mainstream market?

To be honest I’m not even sure, I would say when radio started playing our songs at daytime. To hear your song on the radio being played next to people like Rihanna and Lady Gaga is when I started to think is our band branching out into the world of people who wouldn’t normally listen to our style of Rock music. But then you don’t know really it could be classified mainstream before or after then, everyone has a different opinion of mainstream and what it is.

Who has been your favourite band(s) to play with and why?

My favourite band we have played with is Paramore, this is because of their attitudes towards the daily lifestyle of being in a band. You have fun but then you have to realise when you are on tour it is pretty much your job and you have to be sensible at times and look after yourself. They are also an incredibly tight live band and really make a show. We learnt a lot from touring with them for our own personal benefit of being musicians.

Where has been your favourite place to play and what has been your favourite ever show?

My favourite place to play outside of the UK is Melbourne Australia. That place is so magical and every time we have been there the shows have been off the hook, probably the biggest crowds we have played to outside of the UK. My Favourite show ever was when we played Main Stage at Reading festival in 2010. We must of played to over 30,000 people and the view from stage was nuts. Before we went on it was pissing it down with rain and we thought great just our luck you know, the biggest show we have done and its raining, but the rain went and the sun came out and just made it more of a memorable moment.

Do you ever get stopped in the street?

Yeah weird to say but recently I have been stopped a lot more time just going out round the shops and hanging out with my mates. It’s not a bad thing at all though, just means that our music is now reaching more people and they want to feel part of the band which is rad. We always have time for people as well that know us, and we try and not make it awkward also.

What is the weirdest thing/comment you’ve ever received from a fan?

Well the weirdest thing we have ever had was recently on our last tour in the UK in Birmingham, someone decided to make a You Me At Six 2013 calendar of naked men and decided to print pictures of our faces and put them on their heads, we found this rather amusing but we won’t ever release a calendar like that. We have also had some very random comments from fans but some of them are far to rude to even say.

Are you pleased with the responses from your new single ‘No One Does It Better’?

Yeah definitely, at first it was a bit hard because it’s different to what we have done before and people weren’t connecting with it as easy as our other songs, but after time it seemed like everyone was getting into it more and it now has achieved things we weren’t expecting like getting us on the B list on Absolute radio, we are the only rock band to even be on the playlist there so hopefully we are doing something right.

Have you got any festivals lined-up up for the summer?

Yeah we have got Download festival in June and we are headlining the Second stage which is madness, and then we are also playing Reading and Leeds festivals this year on the Main Stage again. We are also doing a few shows with Coca Cola for the Olympics and we get to play Hyde Park the day before the Olympics start.

You created the ‘world’s first rollercoaster single’ for Thorpe Parks ‘The Swarm,’ have you been on the ride and what did you think of it?
I haven’t been on the ride, but we have visited the ride so we can get a feel of what it was based on so we could go get our ideas together for the song. It looks great and apparently its a smooth ride which is always good. Our drummer Dan went on it and said it was so good he had to go on it 3 times in a row.
The band go on tour on the 9th of June and are set to play the Olympic Torch Relay Concerts in Cardiff and London on the 25th of May and August. Check it out!

According To You

According To You – Interview.

Young and talented; the London based band are fun, lively and incredibly catchy! Bagging themselves a live set at the opening of Thorpe Park’s new ride ‘The Swarm’ and  what sounds like a busy scheduled summer, there is much to be expected from this promising quartet. I caught up with Bassist Jack Tough to get a sneaky peak into the world of ATY!

To someone who has never heard of ‘According to you,’ describe the band in a sentence?

I would describe ‘According To You’ as young, energetic, tongue and cheek, with a mature approach to music and a mature approach to teen break ups and relationships

Do you know how the name came about?

Well I do know that the band before I joined they had many names before and I think Dennie turned around and said, ‘According To You.’ I think he used it in a sentence and that’s how it came about.

How did you all meet?

Well the three lads, the original band members, Dennie Harry and Connor went to school together they’ve been going, for about 3 years before me and I met Dennie at college in my first year because I heard that some guy wanted a bass player in a band and that was it!

 

Who would you say are your main influences/favourite bands?

I would say main influences would be Arctic Monkeys, The Jam, Hard Fi and possibly the Libertines… And Jamie T.

Who has been your favourite band(s) to play with and why?

Oh god… I’ve played with so many, I’m gonna have to proper think, Mikill Pane, that’s it!  Because it was the first time we played a gig at Langley all Girls school and it was a charity raising event and our drummer said he was quite well know so we met him back stage and we chatted to him and his performance was phenomenal, he got everyone involved and he was a very, very, genuine guy very honest.

What is your favourite song to play live?

Well it used to be ‘Kiss On The Doorstep’ because that was quite an upbeat tempo but we’ve got a new song called ‘Come With Me’ and the verses and the chorus are just so in your face and so powerful, it’s kinda like stadium music and we just get a good feedback from the crowd and they love it, they go mental for it, so yeah ‘Come With Me.’

You released some new songs on the 29th of March at the Hobgoblin, what was the reaction from fans and were you pleased with it?

Again I think that the reaction, they were just amazed because a lot of people come to our gigs and have seen us play for years they were quite impressed with how we’ve progressed and I think we enjoyed it just as much as they did.

Do you guys have a process to writing your songs or does it come naturally?

The song writing does mainly come down to Dennie, obviously we have our own input, ya know, Dennie will play something then I’ll play a bass line to it fiddle about, then Connor will make drums and then Dennie will kind of say how he wants it to be structured, but it is mainly down to Dennie, but we all get a say when creating a song

You also played at the opening of ‘Thorpe Parks’ new ride ‘The Swarm,’ how was that for you? Was it different to the gigs you normally play?

That was incredibly different! It was such an amazing experience and one that we really appreciated. Because everyone knows Thorpe Park we just felt we had the opportunity to get our music out to a younger audience because ya know, Thorpe Park is quite young people. And because they were lining up we literally played under one of the loops and people were lining up so they had no choice but to listen to our music and they loved it and we shifted so many CD’s and we gained so many fans from it, yeah it made our fan base bigger.

Also, have you been on the ride and what did you think?

Yeah as soon as we finished playing they said right, you’re going on the ride and I’ve got to admit we all thought it was bloody brilliant! Apart from, and you can see the reaction in the photos, Harry our guitarist was absolutely crapping his pants. But I would recommend it, I wouldn’t say it’s the best ride there but it just gets your adrenaline going, it’s a bit of fun.

What is the weirdest thing/comment you’ve ever received from a fan?

We’ve actually got this fan from Argentina and she tweets us and Facebooks us quite regularly and we think it’s quite funny. And yeah she asked to marry all of us, she was being deadly serious she was like I want you to come over to Argentina and I want to marry you lot. Can I marry you? Being deadly serious? And we were like how do we actually respond, we obviously tried to make it into a joke somehow, yeah I think that’s probably the weirdest one.

Who has the worst habit in the band?

Worst habit would have to be Harry. Harrys worst habit is bringing food to rehearsals and always eating at some point. When we’ve got a gig, there will be food in his hands, and yes, he is the biggest one out of the band!

 

Have you got any plans for the summer? Any festivals lined up this year?

Yes indeed we have, this summer we are releasing our first album which will consist of quite a few new songs which we’re hoping will be quite successful, festivals this summer we’re playing Guilfest and a couple of festivals around the country. Not well known ones but ones that will just give us an opportunity to meet new people and build a bigger fan base. This summer we’ve got a lot of gigs lined up and yeah we’re all looking forward to it, especially the release of our first record.

Where would you like to see yourselves in 2 years time?

In two years time I would like to see us playing on the BBC Introducing Stage at Reading and Leeds festival, have a record deal and hopefully be touring Europe and release our second album.

Dear Justin Bieber Fans.

Go die in a hole.

This kid is only 246 days younger than me (yes, I worked that shit out) but WHY does he look 6 years younger?! And 100x more annoying (when you thought it wasn’t possible?).

I genuinely don’t see the appeal in someone who looks and sounds about 12. If you are 12, then, maybe I’ll push to find it acceptable?

But even so, if a guy sang to you ‘baby, baby, baby, ohhh’ would you not think a) This poor kid has problems, he’s not only calling me baby but he’s unnecessarily repeating  himself  b) This guy is a bit of a creep, and c) Shut the fuck up?!

He doesn’t even write his own music! Well, in fairness most of it is ‘co-written’ but “sadly” that doesn’t really cut it for me. It’s not sincere and I’m sure he probably doesn’t  truly understand half the things he’s singing (whining if you prefer?) about. Being 246 days older than him, I can hold my hands up and admit I would probably have the same problem if I was to write a song, but luckily for the music industry and the probably world, I am not a talented enough musician.

I just think the hype around Bieber is a bit ridiculous, what has he REALLY done to be, in some cases, idolised?

Another thing I find hard to believe (no pun intended) is the people who genuinely call themselves, ‘Beliebers!’ I think at this point you should not only find a hobby but probably have a long sit down and think about your life? Seriously, WHO COMES UP WITH THIS?!

Obviously I’m well aware of how much Bieber abuse circulates and I’ve probably regurgitated the words of 100,000 people but I really do think you should be able to post something (i.e the word ‘Bieber’) on twitter and not get a bunch of replies telling you ‘how to get re-tweeted by Justin Bieber,’ is the world really that obsessed? Because quite frankly I’d rather eat my own hand.

 

 

Easter Hols’.

I haven’t posted on here for ages.

Partly because I have nothing to write about, partly because I have no time to write and mainly because I’m a boring fart.

I went over a week without touching my laptop!

And on the rare occasion I do think of something, I’m busy, like, at work, in the shower, Facebook stalking, getting crunk (cause I’m a student living on the edge), listening to my mum’s un-funny jokes, staring into space. So, by the time I get the chance, I’ve already forgotten.

Saying that, on Twitter today, I can’t remember who, but someone, tweeted suggesting that sarcasm should have its own font! I am absolutely, categorically, 100% pro this idea!

I think it’s GENIUS (as Vince Noir would say).

On which note, I’ll leave you with ’30 Worst Album Covers of All Time’ because I found it quite funny and wish I had posted it!

http://blog.tastebuds.fm/worst-album-covers-of-all-time/

And a picture I found of me in a wig. Quite a few years ago. So bad it needed to be shared. Enjoy.

American Beauty

I know I must sound like I’m re-inventing the wheel but I honestly just watched American Beauty for the first time (despite being told to countless times before), I am COMPLETELY in awe of Sam Mendes and Alan Ball. I am an absolute mug for not watching it sooner!

The script is fucking insane (good insane, obviously) and the direction is fucking brilliant. If you’ve seen it you’ll know why and if you don’t get it, there’s probably no hope for you in life.

Having said this, my housemates’ first response was ‘Yeah it’s alright but that dad chavy was a bit weird, like, touching the underage girl and stuff…’ Yeah. True story.

Alan Ball – ‘The point is that we live in a culture that goes out of its way to deny mortality.’

http://www.spiritualteachers.org/alan_ball.htm

My 10 BIGGEST Facebook hates.

To offenders of the following…

1.     Illiterate people. Obviously, everyone makes typo’s and no one’s English is perfect but, when your status reads “nte out wiff da gurls…” would it kill you to use proper English?! No. It would not.

2.     People that edit photos on paint and use text generators to produce sickening photos of their “Best Friend For Life” or more annoyingly, their boyfriends. Grossly tacky!

3.     The people that have 5000 friends, do you even know 5000 people?…  I think not.

4.     Status updates recording each passing second of someone’s life. “Just woke up. Just brushed my teeth. Just ate a crisp…” Give a fuck?!

5.     Bitching about ex-boyfriend (or girlfriend) on Facebook and clarifying that you’re “over him” or “you’re better off without him” in an attempt to make them jealous… Clearly not?

6.     Posting ‘deep and meaningful’ song lyrics to draw attention how woeful your life is. You’re not deep, and you’re not meaningful, you’re an attention seeker. Get a grip!

7.     10 year olds on Facebook. Need I say more?

8.     The idiots that click on spam. Fair enough if you’re really a big enough mug to click on spam in the first place, but don’t punish me for your incompetence by cluttering my news feed with it!

9.     People that upload ENDLESS photos of Google image sport cars or their pets OR worse still, underage pop stars. Find a hobby?

10.   The creepy old men that have no mutual friends and STILL find it acceptable to send you a friends request. CRINGE!

Admittedly I could go on…