In association with Major Leagues, TMB has decided to have a chit chat with the brilliant Weirds. Four life-long pals based in Leeds making loud music together, ‘Valley of Vision’ from their upcoming debut album features on the label’s new compilation Struck Out in aid of Help Refugees. You can listen to and purchase it right here. Check out the rest of this week’s featured interviews too…
Big recent news is you signed to Alcopop! Records. How did that come about and how’s it going so far?
It’s going really well! We emailed Alcopop! a link to our album after we recorded it and Jack was just super into the band. We met up in London and clicked. He has a really positive attitude which translated so well to us – we’ve always felt that we can be ourselves around him and not hide anything. We’re massive control freaks and pretty particular about the way we’re presented, and Alcopop! always strive to get the best for us. Alcopop! have also consistently put out really cool vinyl/limited releases – and that was something that attracted us.
You’re based in Leeds, but where are you all from originally?
We originally went to school together in Nantwich, which is a small town just south of Manchester in Cheshire. That’s where we started playing music – in the school practice room using budget school equipment and sounding pretty dreadful. Looking back on it, I think the music teachers really didn’t like us, but we actually learned a lot in those early days, thrashing out songs in a playful, childlike way, without any consideration really. It was fun.
Is anyone the weirdest member of Weirds, or is everyone equally weird?
We’ve never been asked that question before. I would probably say equally weird. We’ve known each other for so long now that we have a pretty strange and in-depth understanding of each other. We have a communal vocabulary/dialect, developed through all of our shared experience that must sound odd to other people for the first time.
Your debut album is out 12th May. Where was it recorded?
Yep. It was recorded last year at The Nave in Leeds, with Matt Peel (Eagulls, Pulled Apart by Horses/Bad Breeding). The Nave is a beautiful restored church, and it’s always a pleasure to record there. Matt and the other guys have a huge collection of amps, pedals, synths, guitars, tape machines, you name it. The live room is vast and has super high ceilings which can get huge sounds. It’s a proper recording studio with huge attention to detail, it kind of feels like La Fabrique in France or Svenska Gramafon in Sweden inside, and is a great space to hone a record. Matt has a direct and to the point working style, he’s not afraid to argue with you for the sake of the song – and we needed that.
Excited to release it to the world?
Massively. We’ve been itching to get it out for so long!
You’re also about to be dead busy touring with The Wytches. Have you played with them before?
Yeah! We can’t wait to hit the road with them. We’ve played with them before in Leeds, but this will be the first time we’ve toured extensively with them. We’ve met the guys on a number of occasions through mutual friends and at shows etc. & we’re sure it’ll be a lot of fun, both on and off stage.
What’s the weirdest thing that’s happened to you at a gig/while on tour?
We were once referred to as a ‘female-fronted pop-punk quintet’ on a poster in London in our early days- which is 100 percent factually inaccurate, I don’t know where they got that from. Even if Aidan was female- they didn’t need to mention gender anyway.
We once played a gig in Milton Keynes that had some accommodation above the venue – it was a really cool flat with sofas and a record player, but the night got super weird and we had to kick out some racists in denial from the party and woke up to an old man in a towel banging on our door telling us where to get the best burger in Milton Keynes.
The video for Valley of Vision is great! Where was it filmed?
Thanks! It was filmed at Ribblehead Viaduct in the Yorkshire Dales over a period of two days. We worked with the ace Bracken Films on it, those guys are on the same page as us creatively so although getting up at 5am and running through mud and shit until 3pm for two days wasn’t ideal, the end result is great. We wanted the video to be super cinematic and almost like something out of A Field in England/a Lars von Trier film, and I think we achieved it.
It’s also featured on Major Leagues’ new compilation for Help Refugees, what made you want to be involved?
The answer is obvious. As soon as we got the email we instantly confirmed it. The horrendous and inhumane struggles that people all over our planet are experiencing on a daily basis is sickening. Travelling from country to country, uncertain of their future, many escaping war zones or dictatorial regimes, it’s abhorrent and needs to be highlighted. The least we can do is donate one of our songs to help them. Go and buy it!
Anything else coming up in 2017 we should know about?
We’re up to loads of stuff. We’re playing a load of shows/festivals and a load that haven’t been announced yet, so we are itching to get out and play, it’s what we do best.
Finally, what’s the one thing the world should know about Weirds?
We’re massive Toploader fans.