Interview + Giveaway :: The Maccabees
May 4th 2012
Nick La Rosa
It would be easy to pass The Maccabees off as simply ‘indie darlings’: they’re a bunch of good-looking British dudes who make fun, melodic tunes. But with NME hailing them as ‘the best young guitar band in Britain at the absolute peak of their powers’ things only keep getting bigger for the band. Not only have they shared producers with Arcade Fire and LCD Soundsystem, The Maccabees have collaborated with the likes of Roots Manuva. Pretty impressive, huh?
Guitarist Felix White plays Q&A with The Flog, talking about what inspires the band, brotherly love and their impending first trip down under.
Let’s start from the beginning, what is The Maccabees story? How was the band born?
We’re all from South London and have known each other since we were pretty young. When we were all sixteen-ish we were basically the only people we knew who wanted to play music. We lived in Brighton briefly but have since all moved back to London and still going ten years on…
So what influences you creatively? Do the band share similar influences?
When we started there were a few things that we would all listen to together and that really shaped our beginnings; anything off of The Old Grey Whistle Tests box sets, The Clash, Interpol, The Band, The Beatles etc. We still love all those things but have individually gathered quite a mish-mash of tastes which are sometimes apparent in the music and sometimes not.
You released your third album Given to the Wild earlier this year with a different sound to your previous releases. What’s prompted the change? Were you making a conscious decision to develop your sound?
We did consciously approach the writing process differently. We decided for the first time we would write away from rehearsal rooms, glued to our respective instruments. Instead songs were born out of building from new guitar sounds for us, piano loops, programmed beats etc etc and the end result is testament to the process in that it does find itself quite far removed from the first two albums.
What’s your favorite band memory or achievement so far?
That we’re still doing it and still getting better.
Your brother Hugo is also in the band, what’s it like touring with him? Do things ever get a bit ‘Oasis’ at times?
There are three of us in the band now, with Will playing key on tour. Oasis were together for twenty years so they can’t have got on too badly after all!
This will be your first time in Australia, what are you most looking forward to doing during your time here?
We can’t wait to see it. I’m looking forward to the gigs most though.
Having played festivals like Reading and Bestival over the past few years, what can we expect from your live show?
It’ll be songs from all three records and having never played in Australia I’ll probably have a better answer for that after the tour…
WHAT: The Maccabees (18+ only)
WHEN: Thursday 10th May
WHERE: Metro Theatre, Sydney
HOW MUCH: $53
We have one DOUBLE PASS for the Sydney gig to give away to a lucky-schmucky Maccabees fan. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us why you want it to be your name on the door list – winner will be notified early next week. (Remember it’s an 18+ event!)