Interview: Superfood’s Ryan Malcom talks Bambino
With the success of their first album, ‘Don’t Say That’, Superfood are back with a bang. Their hotly anticipated second album, ‘Bambino’, came out in September following a string of well received singles. Ryan Malcolm, lead guitarist and co-founder of the band, spoke to MCR Live ahead of their set at Neighbourhood Festival.
So ‘Don’t Say That’ came out in 2014, and your new album ‘Bambino’ came out a month ago. How do you think Superfood have changed in that time?
Well, when me and Dom first got together it was about 4 or 5 months before the first album. So we’ve just had way more time together and we feel more comfortable together and really found a rhythm.
I think the first album was kind of thrown together a bit and the songs are kind of nonsensical, but this time around there is more meaning behind the songs. You can feel it when we play live, you can get into it more if it means more to you. Yeah, I think its just a natural thing that happens when you’re together with someone. You just get better.
When did you realise the album was finished? Was it a gradual process or was it a sudden realisation of ‘right, its done’?
Well this time really, I don’t really know when it was officially finished because we were kind of perfectionists with it. We were always tweaking things and the label really wanted us to sign it off. We kept wanting to change the track listing about, and it took about 18 months to finish it. So it was a long process, but when it was officially finished and we had the masters and stuff it was a huge relief.
We listened to it as a whole album, as apposed to listening to parts. It was a great feeling.
When you’re done, is it pure excitement to get it out there? Or is there an element of nervous anticipation?
There’s a bit of both really. When we released the first single, Double Dutch, we were really nervous man. We wanted to release that one in particular because it was such a far move from our old stuff.
We thought lets just go completely west and see what happens. So that was nerve racking. But we’ve got really good fans and they get really invested into it.
So what do you guys as a group enjoy more? The creative process or the gigging and touring?
Well I think they go hand in hand. You can spend so long creating, like the 18 months creating this record, and it’s fucking great. Then you start to question what it’s for.
But, when you get out there and play it live, people sing your words back to you and you think, ‘ahhh that’s what its for’.
Then after so long, you start itching to get back in the studio.
What’s the process when you create a new song? Is there a set process?
It really varies, there’s songs on the album where Dom’s written lyrics and I’ve put beats over it and there’s stuff where I’ve written and Dom’s added to it. Sometimes we just sit down and both do it. We don’t really have a set formula which I think is a good thing, you can tell when something is formulated. It is just different.
So now the boring questions are out of the way and you know the nitty gritty elements of their musical minds, we got the chance to really get to know what goes on in the world of Superfood.
Who’s who in the band. Who’s the most likely to be a liability on a night out?
Dominic, definitely. Always. He’s just a crazy dude haha, just mental. He’s just a funny guy and he likes to be loud. He’s got this thing, and it’s just a weird way of getting a laugh. He’ll say something over and over again, something that Isn’t funny or doesn’t even make sense like “salt and vinegar crisps”. It gets to the point where its really annoying and then it becomes absolutely hilarious.
Who’s the class clown?
We’re all a bit clownish. We’re always trying to out-do each other trying to clown around.
Who’s the most likely to survive in an apocalyptic situation?
Well I think I’m the most likely. I can open a beer bottle with a water bottle, you’re definitely going to need that in an apocalypse.
Actually, do you know what, I’m pretty useless. Aramis, our drummer, is definitely switched on. I reckon he was a cub scout. He’s always got clean clothes and that.
Is there a mature parent figure in the group?
Alice is like that yeah, she’s kind of great like that. She keeps us all in check. She gets it, she’s great.
Where does the North start? Derby or Stoke?
I’m going to say Derby.
Ooooo sorry, it’s Stoke.
Oh man, was that my only chance? Haha
If you get a sandwich, would you call it a bread roll or a teacake?
Hang on, I don’t understand that. Are you talking about a cob? I think that’s a midlands thing. So that’s half a point?
Yeah we can do that. If you’re buying teabags, what do you buy?
Obviously Yorkshire tea.
Spot on, absolutely. If you’re eating a chippy, do you get curry sauce or gravy?
Ahhh, well I know what the correct answer should be. But I get curry sauce, salt and no vinegar.
To be fair, most of the people I know just have curry sauce. I love mushy peas though. Never together though.
I think that’s half a point again then. Would you have breakfast, dinner and tea? Or breakfast, lunch and dinner?
Dinner and tea.
That’s Northern, yes. Sir Ian McKellen or Michael Caine?
Oh man, Sir Ian McKellen?
Good shout, he was born in Burnley. Birds or bees?
I prefer bees.
Good answer, that ones for Manchester. I think that makes you an honorary northerner. Congrats!
If you weren’t a musician, what would you be?
Who would win in a fight? Jeremy Corbyn or Theresa May?
I want to say Corbyn. But May is so evil she’d win. She’s a reptile man.
Are you going to go and see anyone after you’ve played?
Declan McKenna. Love that guy.
What was the last album you bought?
If someone was to play you in the superfood movie, who and why?
Ryan Gosling, because… well I just think it would be pretty funny. He’s white and the critics would be like ‘Whaaat?’.
It’d be a breakthrough. Oscar-worthy.