Monday 20 October 2014

8123 TOUR SPECIAL // Interview & Live Review with Support Act LYDIA

The UK is welcoming Lydia for the first time ever. They may have been a band for over a decade but this is their first jaunt over to UK shores on the 8123 Tour with The Maine. After taking a hiatus the Arizonians have returned with a new sense of vigour.

Est.1987 took the opportunity to head down to London’s Electric Ballroom to catch up with the band and they chatted to us about not being One Direction, being the band that don’t fit in any genre and how the secrets are all coming out now…

Welcome to the UK! It’s your first time over here; have you been enjoying it and our wonderful weather?
LEIGHTON [Antelman, singer]- I actually love the UK weather; it’s so hot over in Arizona right now. Although I’m imagining that it gets a lot colder over the next couple of months which we wouldn’t be prepared for [laughing].
MATT [Keller, keyboard]- Winter is coming [laughing].

The new album

What’s your favourite thing about the UK so far?
JUSTIN [Camacho- guitar]- Definitely the people, everyone has been so nice to us so far.
LEIGHTON- Everyone has been super nice, it’s been great hanging out with everyone. There’s been like a dozen of our fans travelling around to all the shows with us. You can tell fans have been waiting a while for us to finally get over here and play.

 And the British food?
JUSTIN- I’ve heard from a few people how bad the food is, it’s something people like to moan about but we’ve been loving it.
MATT- The food is the bomb, we don’t have Nandos in the States [laughing]. But, I miss good Mexican food the most, you can’t get good Mexican over here [laughing].

Your touring with The Maine and Nick Santino; you’re all from Arizona, is it nice to be on the road with friends?
JUSTIN- Yeah definitely. This is our third tour with The Maine and the way this whole tour has worked out it goes so smoothly.
MATT- Yeah, it’s nice not having that week of everyone on the tour sussing each other out.

Lydia take to the stage at Camden's Electric Ballroom

The album, ‘Devil’, is out now. Every record that you seem to release has a different vibe; is that a conscious decision?
LEIGHTON- Absolutely.
MATT- I can’t imagine why anyone would buy the same record as the last one and we always try make sure we put out something different each time.

The Maine on their headline tour

Is it quite nice then that people can’t pigeon hole you into one specific genre?

LEIGHTON- Yeah definitely. People always ask us to describe our own music and it’s a hard question for me to answer.
MATT- We don’t not write pop songs?! There you go [laughing]. But if you say you’re a pop band then people assume that you’re like One Direction.
LEIGHTON- Certain fans will come upto us and tell us what they think the meaning of the song is or a lyric and it may not be at all what it’s about, but that’s awesome what each of them gets out of it.

You’ve been a band for over ten years now; if you could give your younger selves some advice when you were just starting out what would you say?
MATT- Get a real job [laughing]. Stay on top of brushing your teeth, dental work is expensive [laughing].
JUSTIN- The Hurley shirt is not cool [laughing].
MATT- Why did you bleach your hair?
LEIGHTON- You bleached your hair?!
MATT- In high school I had blue hair for a little bit.
LEIGHTON- All the secrets are coming out now [laughing].

8123 Tour
You had a hiatus, did that reinvigorate the band again after that break?
LEIGHTON- Yeah, it just got to a point where we needed to step away and then when it felt right we started playing again. It wasn’t really a plan to break up because we all still love playing music together.

And what’s next for Lydia?
We’re currently a third of the way through the new record and trying to write and record for as much of the year and we’ll have new music out for the spring time. We would love to come back here, hopefully within a year.

Thanks guys!

And here’s what happened when Lydia took to the stage…

The indie-rock four piece from Arizona may be new to British shores, however, their music certainly isn’t. Their ten year tenure has seen them release four albums and there is little doubt that their presence in the UK isn’t new; tonight’s crowd holds up to that. This may be their first live show and indeed they may be the support act, however the room is filled with fans singing along.

The Maine brought Lydia out on the road to the UK

Older, classic Lydia tracks, such as ‘Hospital’, echoic and mesmerising, resound through the room and capture the crowd in the ballroom. One minute soft and pulled back and the next, funked up and filled with pop sensibilities, the set is a journey of the band’s back catalogue. Now on their fourth album, ‘Devil’, the synths and delicious guitar riffs make them alluring even to the newest fans. Ambient and haunting, they are too good not to appreciate and it will be exciting to see them come back for a headline tour.

Between themselves and Nick Santino it has been a suitably varied and entertaining warm up ahead of The Maine’s set. Lydia’s album may be entitled ‘Devil’, however there is nothing devilish about their super sweet performance tonight that won over the Electric Ballroom crowd. 7/10

Photo credit: Nathen McVittie Photography