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Interview: Freakout Honey

Ahead of their gig at Band On The Wall tonight, we got the chance to chat to Sam (guitar & Keyboards), Tom (drummer), Paris (lead singer) and Taous (lead guitar) from Freakout Honey.

What kind of sound and vibe do you guys go for, for people who haven’t heard of you before?

It’s quite busy music. We used to have 3 guitar players but we’ve neatened it up a bit. We’ve had about 15 different members, not all at one time, but we’ve narrowed it down.

Broadly speaking, you’d fit us into the psych scene. Some people say we’re quite proggy and sometimes space rock. I guess that’s closer to it because we have quite strange chord progressions.

So that’s quite niche, what are your influences from this?

Jack is definitely classic rock but he’s not here. We’d sound like Led Zeppelin or something if it was up to him, he can get his bass sounding like Led Zeppelin but none of the guitars.

I like pushing my tremolo in on the guitars like Kevin Shields and Josh from The Horrors and people like that. I also like Pond, like the Australian kind of spacey pop.

My favourite drummers are Keith Moon, Wren from the Stone Roses, Chad Smith.

I think that’s quite a growing genre at the moment, the Australian indie rock kind of vibes. I was listening to your track ‘Marinate’, and one bell that rang in my head was Beach Boys, Beatles, that kind of era.

A bit yeah, it’s the chords. It’s a very summery track.

I was wondering because there was already quite a lot of this in the 60’s/70’s, do you think there’s still space in this industry for that kind of music. If so, what do you think you bring to the table that hasn’t really been done before?

I think now with a different line-up, we’re going down a different route with our new stuff that we’ve got going on.

There used to be six members, so it used to go a bit everywhere because you need to take in from everyone. Now there’s only five of us, we’re a bit more grouped and neatened up a bit.

I think it’s a bit more modern. There’s still loads of bands that stick to that sound that you said, but for us, we don’t really stick to just one thing.

How would you say your tracks contrast to each other?

They all sound pretty different to be fair. We’ve got a really varied set, so you’ll see some themes from example the prog side, then the more sixties side, but it certainly is a varied set because we certainly try to not stick to one sound.

Sometimes we’ll jam something and it never turns into a song and we may go back to it like two years later. We just all need to enjoy what we’re playing, so we’re not going to play stuff that we know someone doesn’t really like.

I think we need those bad rehearsals sometimes because everything kind of grows on top of each other.

You know what you don’t like then I guess…

Going to what you were saying about there being a niche for our genre, I feel like no matter what kind of music you do, if you’re good at what you do and you work hard of it then you’ll make the niche, there’s always going to be a market.   

We generally just take one sound and put it with another one. There have been songs where we’ve mixed straight Krautrock, that’ll be like the bass and the drums, then we’ll get a guitar from a different genre over the top of it. So it’s like we’re blending different things together.

What do you have out at the moment that people can go and listen to? What would you recommend?

Really, we’re going to get into the studio within the next couple of months. The only things we’ve really got out at the moment is a couple of tracks on Spotify and some recordings on YouTube.

We’ve got quite a lot of live tracks. There’s a couple of instrumentals on youtube as well, there’s one called Jam 10 which we still play.

When you’re shooting videos, I guess your sound has quite a typical look about it. But what kind of imaging would you like to go into when you’re shooting?

Ac’s got all the ideas for that. He’s studying visual arts so he does quite a lot, even the promo videos. So I think he’s got a whole plan in his head of what he wants to do.

So you do things pretty much all by yourself then? Are you under any management?

Pretty much yeah, but we’re not under any management.

So you’re still up for grabs then! Where do you see yourselves going in the future, what is your goal?

Headline at Glastonbury…, no I’m joking. Just to gig and practice and record on repeat.

Have you got any gigs upcoming?

We’re playing a free gig at Band On The Wall this Friday (today). False Advertising is headlining it, then there’s a band called Ill, who is from Manchester as well, we’re opening it and there’s Bleached Bones as well.

I think we’ve got a gig lined up in Stoke for the end of the month, on the 30th at the Underground.

It’s good for us to play in Manchester because it’s our crowd but it’s nice as well to mix things up. It’s nice playing in Manchester but if you do it all the time with the same venues, it just ends up being the same crowd and that sense of novelty just goes away. We’re pretty comfortable in Manchester now so it reaches the stage where it’s promoters looking for us instead of us looking for promoters.

Hopefully just before the festival season kicks in, do a weekend tour. So do up north one weekend, then down south the next weekend, then put it all together.

What do you have upcoming for 2018?

We’ve got loads of music that’s ready to go that we just need to learn how to play properly.

Yeah and we’ve got loads of unfinished jams as well but as you say we’re not signed or anything, so we don’t really have a limit as to where we can go.

I think recently there’s been a bit of a rise in genres like hip hop and grime and things like that, where do you see yourselves in stance to that?

I guess it’s quite complimentary. There’s loads of people who are into indie, but the’ll still go to a hip hop show so I don’t think its competition it’s just complimentary. I’m really into hip hop and I’m really into soul but I’m in a rock band.  

Does that have an influence in your music?

Definitely, I think everything you listen to influences you. Even when you’re in a pub and you just hear something, you’re just subconsciously absorbing it.

In terms of festival for this year, do you have anything lined up?

We played Black thore last yeah and they guy who put us on hinted at putting us on again. Then Paris wants to get us on Darwin Live. I go to Bimm, so last year I played with another band at Y Not festival and Truck

So what would you ideal festival line up be?

I went to a festival in Portugal a couple of years ago with Arcade Fire, Tame Impala, Radiohead, Father John Misty… it was one of the best festivals I’ve ever been to. I mean if you want the best festival you also need people that wouldn’t normally go and watch

The horrors would be great at a festival, The Stone Roses, HMLTD , they’re the funnest band around. They’re at the stage now where they’re just about to take off, I think what they’re doing is really cool

I’ve seen Snoop Dogg at a festival and it was the funniest show I’ve ever been to. He was really stoned, but just everyone knows Snoop Dogg so the whole festival was there.

I don’t go for a line up I like running into things where you’re like oh my god this is great. And like in the moment, there are loads of things going on and you bump into an artist you‘ve never heard before and you end up just following them. Like with Henge at Beatherder Festival, I go there every year it’s like a tradition.

For the full interview with Freakout Honey, check out the audio below.

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