By Jack Holmes
Continuing on from part one of our interview with Sam Hudson, frontman of Manchester band Sly Antics, we wanted to know more about how their upcoming singles are going to fit into their catalogue.
Do you feel like you’re heading towards an album then?
I think so, I think the idea is for someone else to pay for that though. The dream is, use these singles, get picked up by a big label, they like it enough to put us in the studio and we do a big album launch at some point. It seems to be the way bands are going these days, putting out an album straight away is a bit too overwhelming for some people they just want snippets of bands, they don’t have the patience they used to listen to whole albums. These three singles, then next step, yeah definitely an album.
Do you have a record label in mind?
Difficult to say really, just one of the major labels really. I say one of the major labels, it doesn’t even have to be that, just someone who knows us and has a similar roster. Who can really just push us that massive gap forwards again, we’re doing everything DIY at the moment, which a lot of bands are doing, but it gets to a certain stage where you’re at max capacity. We’re working every single night in the evenings, every single weekend, I took two days off work the other day just to do band jobs and stuff like that. It’s getting to the stage where we need someone to say “hey, I’m gonna put you from B to C”.
Out of those three upcoming singles, would you say one stands out the most?
The first one, which people will know if they’ve been to the show, is called Motion, it’s the song we usually finish the set with. It’s a real kind of anthemic track with a chanty chorus, what’s really good with the recordings is that it’s a really dirty fuzzy track as well, it’s that amalgamation of catchy choruses which are quite poppy but the rest of the song is quite dirty and loud. It’s a real rock and roll track which is becoming rarer these days so yeah, that’s a favourite.
Have you approached recording any differently this time around?
It’s with the same people as last time, who are just absolute geniuses. I just can’t describe how incredible they are, they can just listen to a song, like we take the songs in as perfect as we think they are and we play those to them and they make a few slight arrangements through a fresh pair of ears which is really helpful. I think it was Lights Go Down last year they completely rearranged all the choruses, it might not sound like a fun process but it’s actually really good to have a fresh perspective on it. This time around we went in less prepared on purpose because we knew things would change. We had a bit more guts this time, last time I think we were playing it a bit safe, they were wild and out there but they weren’t really going too off the spectrum. This time we’ve thrown some stuff in that at first might sound a bit odd, different notes and stuff, I think for one track I just recorded my guitar getting feedback for the entire four minutes and then we overlaid it just to create some noise. It’s definitely got more balls, it’s taking more risks. plus we enjoyed it and knew who we were by that point. When we first recorded the last EP we did that before we’d even gigged, so we didn’t really have an image or the sound we thought we had, after playing live for a year and then coming back to it all the live elements that we loved on stage, we’ve injected that into the music.
Can you tell me a little more about the studio you mentioned?
It’s Greenmount Studios, it’s where pulled apart by Horses did their album there, not the one they’ve just launched the previous one, and the Cribs have gone in there plenty of times, some great bands. It’s a studio that isn’t all leather seats its dirty couches, everything’s crammed in, no one wears shoes in there, it’s just like someone’s lounge which is exactly what we wanted it to be. There’s no corporate feel to it whatsoever, which is why we chose it.
Which would you say is more fun to play, old tracks or new ones?
I think still the old tracks simply because people know them and sing them back to us and that again feeds us on stage. If I see someone singing the lyrics that raises my game by about 10%, there’s pros and cons of both but old tracks for that. Any band who’s a big band these days, there most well-known tracks go down the best but it’s still good to throw out the new stuff just so people know we’re still writing and evolving.
What’s it like being a headliner now?
Our first headline was weirdly at the Liverpool Cavern which we got out of nowhere, considering we’re not a Liverpool band. That was like a festival and we headlined that on one of the weekend dates, but our first proper headline was our EP launch. It was quite a weird change, it wasn’t long ago that we were first on, it’s a whole different thing, means you can play your own equipment and obviously your own equipment which is much better.
If you could support any band in 2017 which would it be?
We’ve just applied to support Moana, they’re not a huge band and they’re playing Night and Day. If I was going all out I’d say Red Hot Chilli Peppers or something because their stadium shows are really good, they’re a very live band now, and obviously, they’re touring the world and it looks incredible.
Is that something you’d want to do eventually then?
I think that’s the next step, we’ve hammered Manchester as much as we can for a year, we’ve now gone across to Yorkshire. We’re playing Leeds this weekend and mad Friday in Leeds as well which should be a really good gig. Some Sheffield dates as well, the span of the band is getting bigger and bigger. I think next year is when we look at doing a tour per single launch that we do, either that or we look at other touring bands and just ask “hey can we be your touring band”, that’s definitely the next step. It’s going to be hard but it has to be done.
And before we go by any chance did you see this week’s NME top 50 albums of the year and if so what did you think?
I didn’t no I missed that, it’s something I’d usually look at. NME’s changed a lot in the last few years, in fact, I have actually stopped following NME that’s why I won’t have seen it. It’s because their posts had started annoying me, real click bait marketing posts, top 5 albums by Oasis every day, was starting to drive me crazy. It’s a real shame, I hope they listen to the feedback, every person I’ve talked to has said it’s horrendous. I think they shared a One Direction once and I was just, that was it, I’m done.
Will you be up for deciding with the rest of the Sly Antics gang on what your favourite album of the year was for our December issue by the way as well?
We’ll have a think, there’s so many, and you forget when they actually came out but sure I’ll get that to you.
You can catch Sly Antics at Kazoopa Festival later today if you’re near Leeds or at the Manchester Crafted Beer Festival on the December 10th.