Sunday 12 February 2012

ONE TO WATCH - Future Event - Spector UK TOUR Interview with Frederick Macpherson

Spector are the band on everyone's lips; their unique blend of indie-electro rock has made them firm festival favourites as well as had them gracing Later...With Jools Holland and BBC's Sound of 2012. With their album dropping in to the public sphere later this year and the guys about to embark on a headline tour (which is fast selling out), Est.1987 caught up with lead singer Frederick Macpherson before it all kicks off.

So, Spector, after the producer Phil Spector? But I heard that you had a different name every week? So, if not Spector, what could it have been and why did you settle on Spector? Jonathan Spector the football player actually. I'm not sure what the last few names before Spector were. We were definitely toying with Bad Dreams and Chinatown (which was taken) and Young Americans. I think I wanted something with two syllables and Spector was what we were called the week the first record was getting printed up.

Grey Shirt & Tie single cover
You guys have had some interesting comparisons- from calling you the new Bowie to saying your music is like The Strokes, Roxy Music and Kanye West. What do you make of all that? Or do you just try to do your own thing and ignore it? We've had some ridiculous comparisons. I'm probably more like the new David Baddiel than the new David Bowie. I think we'd be lucky to be like any of the above, although I do deliberately write guitar riffs that sound like The Strokes. If we could get away with just playing their songs I'd be pretty happy with that.

Your new single is called “Chevy Thunder”, that¹s quite an epic title, almost like it could be a movie title. Is that the feel that you wanted and the writing behind it?I think this song could be a movie. It was written about a very certain time in my life just over a year ago that really felt like a movie; even though it was just a few, not particularly epic, evenings. I think when you experience feelings that you want to make last forever, then writing a song can be like cryogenically freezing them. I'm really happy “Chevy Thunder”exists.

The video was shot in the wastelands of Southern California by Focus Creeps- how was that?Making it was superb; fun on another level. The fact that we even had the opportunity to go to America, let alone some of the crazy little towns we visited, is amazing. Music video making is a dying art but Focus Creeps are still flying the flag. Respect.

When and what can we expect from the Spector album?I think you can already pre-order the album, which is funny because we haven't finished the recording. It's definitely going to be a bit of a trip listening to it, with loads of different styles and producers – we definitely haven't hemmed ourselves in with one genre or sound. There's a lot of flavour in there, like a multi-pack of Walkers crisps. Actually maybe not that much flavour.

You’re on a headline tour and then touring with Florence and Horrors - are you looking forward to it all and playing a range of venues?Yeah, there's usually a bit more of a gap between playing the smallest venues in a city and the biggest. A month doesn't give us that much time to hone our set, so we'll have to make sure we get the merchandise right…and the lights.

Did the experiences of your previous bands (Les Incompetents and Ox.Eagle.Lion.Man) help you when you were getting Spector together?

Without a shadow of a doubt. I'd learned that whatever a band sounds like or however you look it comes down to having good songs, and that if you want to get a  record deal you have to play labels at their own crafty game. I was a teenager when Les Inc stopped and OELM started...I've learned so, so much since then. And I don't regret a moment.

You’ve been in three different bands and you’re still so young- was music always the route And where do you see yourself in the future?Not getting a job seemed more fun than getting a job, but it hasn't necessarily been easier. Music seemed like an exciting path from the first day I sung with a band, but it's not to say it's the only route. I guess I've found the world of entertainment alluring ever since I switched on the TV and saw Blue Peter for the first time. In terms of creating something of true value though, I've barely scratched the surface. We're just starting to have the formative experiences that will no doubt influence and fashion whatever happens next.

You guys are from east London so what do you think of the whole east London vibe now that it has become to popular? According to newspapers and magazines, east London's been having its moment since the late 90s. If I could live in Soho I would, but I can't afford it so I'm happy living here, near our rehearsal room and near friends. As for the 'whole east London vibe' - it's fun, not particularly life changing, good travel links, and a medium to good selection of restaurants. Can't complain.

What are you looking forward to doing in 2012- you’re playing Coachella? Is that one of the big things you’re excited about?Absolutely - I remember writing a list as a teenager of the things I wanted to do in life. Playing Jools Holland was one and now we've done that, and by the looks of things more goals could be getting ticked off in 2012. Coachella's going to be crazy...I was lucky enough to go last year to see Kanye and that changed my life. Not that our sets going to be changing any lives...probably just ruining them.

Catch Spector on their headline tour and click HERE to read our live review from the Manchester show:
The Cluny - Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
King Tut's Wah Wah Hut - Glasgow, UK
The Cockpit - Leeds, UK
The Duchess - York, UK
The Deaf Institute - Manchester, UK
Jericho Tavern - Oxford, UK
The Kazimier - Liverpool, UK
The Rainbow - Birmingham, UK
The Louisiana - Bristol, UK
The Green Door Store - Brighton, UK
Roundhouse - London, UK
100 Club - London, UK