Otherkin: Ready For 2016
WithGuitars are happy to feature a fresh Q&A with the Irish four-piece, whom many have listened and enjoyed in 2015, expect more for 2016 by Otherkin and label Rubyworks. By way of introduction to the odd few, Steve Janes fires some questions in an attempt to cover the band’s recent adventures…
The first single AY AY arrived in April shortly followed by Fell It and The 201 EP, 2015 must’ve been a pretty hectic year?
“Yeah, it was a pretty crazy year! At the start of it we were unsure if the 4 of us would be working in the area we studied in University or playing music professionally. Thanks to some lucky breaks and the support of our label we were able to choose music! In 2015 we did our first UK tour, got playlisted on radio, played our first major festival slots and made our TV debut for Other Voices, it was awesome!”
You’ve played with some good bands, did you tour North America with Parquet Courts or were the dates in Europe?
“We’ve just played Irish dates with these bands, both bands are absolutely awesome and really nice dudes all round. We just played our first show in Europe a couple of days ago and we can’t wait to cover more ground over the coming months.”
After so much travelling, full houses thrills and spills of motorway cafes, you can’t honestly tell me there an no worthy tales you can share with us?
“There’s been some crazy nights alright, our first trip to the UK for Reading & Leeds ended in our Ferry being cancelled and a 6 hour wait at Hollyhead. There’s only one thing 6 Irish lads do when they’re faced with such adversity, being that drunk on a Ferry was absolutely awful. hours prior to this our drummer was getting sick onto Alt-J’s tour bus too, that was funny day.”
In the midst of busy touring commitments, Otherkin released double A-Side titled ‘ii’ in November, which went down very well I’m told.
How was your experience of the Trinity Ball 2014?
“It was wild. For those of you unfamiliar with Trinity Ball, it’s Europe’s largest private party; which translates as a few thousand students in black tie drunk out of their minds. We were delighted to be asked at such an early stage of our career, and even more delighted with the reaction. It was sweet!”
Do recall hearing of Otherkin on XFM, sounded good. as I witnessed the band at Leeds this year, can’t speak for the Reading crowd, but the more northern-based crowd at Leeds were more than mildly enthusiastic, guess it was the same for both festivals?
“The reaction at both Reading and Leeds just blew us away. We really weren’t expecting anywhere near the number of festival goers to know who we were, let alone come out and dance with us. Reading definitely left us on a high, and have that matched the next day by some amazing Northerners was just surreal.”
Which brings us to “The 201 EP”, which like songs from your previous releases are infectious, when and where did you record the recent material?
“We originally recorded our first single AY AY back at the start of 2015, but the rest of The 201 wasn’t laid down until closer to the summer. We went to Clique studios to work with our friend, and all round top guy, David Prendergast. The chaps a whizz, and after the job he had done on AY AY we just couldn’t not head back.”
It marks your debut outing for Rubyworks, anything different, studios, producer, recording time?
“Not particularly. We worked again with the same guys who have produced most of our stuff in a studio called Clique. It’s a really relaxed environment and there’s always a heap of time to experiment and put down our layers of guitars!”
The 201 EP sounds very strong – is ‘Love’s A Liability’ a new fave or is the impressive Ay Ay Ay still holding court? Alternatively, is that a dis-service to ‘Feel it; and ’20 To 11’
“Love’s a Liability’ is a personal favourite of mine actually! I like the insistency of the verse riff, it’s simple but effective. I think that we’ve produced a really well-rounded EP that’s got hooks and interesting ideas in equal measure.”
Garage-rock seems to be raising from the more grunge fueled Valentine, Cable 35 to bands like PINS, Post War Glamour Girls, in fact you add bands as weighty as the Savages, Paranoid Visions, Sleaford Mods, Wolf Alice, Slaves et al, for instance, the alternative seems in healthy condition, what do Otherkin think? Am I being too enthusiastic?
“Not at all, there’s a bunch of quality bands knocking around at the minute and there seems to be a growing revival of interest in guitar-centric acts. Which is good news for us, I suppose!”
Watch live session for ‘Feel It’
I know you played a clutch of shows last October-November can we expect a bigger Irish & UK Tours? any studio time booked? Can fans expect a few fireworks in 2016?
“We’re gonna be touring the UK real soon so stayed tuned for updates on that front. We’ve also just finished up recording in the studio and we’re hoping to put out new material in the upcoming months. 2016 is gonna be a big year for the ‘kin and we’re dying to get out on the road and get our teeth into it!”