Photo Credit: Shaun Baldwin
Bringing to you today an interview featuring Sheffield, UK based musical hunks Bayonet. You may have caught my post about them last week featuring their insatiable new single "Call Me When It's Over" that shows off the band's explosive indie pop sensibilities, and swooning British charm that works wonders on just about everyone they meet. Bassist Danny Higgins was nice enough to do an interview as we find out more about the beginnings of the group, what the Sheffield music scene is like and in and around the U.K., what it was like shooting the "Call Me When It's Over" video, and the band's hopes for the future. Here is the transcript from our lovely chat:
Give us your names and roles in the band?
Vince - vocals & guitar
Lewis - vocals, guitar & synth
Danny - bass
Sam - drums
How did Bayonet form and where did you all meet?
Me, Sam, and Lew were all at school together, and Vince came to our sixth form. Me, Vince, and Sam used to be in a band together, and when Vince went to live in Malta he gave Lewis his guitar. When he came back we all got together just to mess about and it just grew really.
What were the acts that inspired you when you were younger that helped shape your individual musical influences?
I think we've all got quite diverse interests that all help contribute to our sound. Obviously our younger tastes were all influenced heavily by our parents, but we all share that with each other and that starts to affect what we all listen to. We all love Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, Don Henley, Tears for Fears, Billy Joel, Michael Jackson, The Cure, there's honestly too many to mention. But I think personally I remember my Mum listening to a lot of 80's pop and soul records and hating them at the time, but then coming back to them now and realising that they are amazing.
Take us behind the Sheffield music scene and how active it is compared to other areas of the U.K.?
I think when a big band makes it from your city that can really help and hinder a lot of people within that city's local scene, and for Sheffield that band in recent years were the Arctic Monkeys. To this day there are still a lot of bands who sound like them, but that was completely opposite to what we wanted to do so that's always influenced our mindset a bit, we've never wanted to be labelled a "Sheffield band". Having said that the scene here is very very active, there's a lot of young bands coming up cutting their teeth in the smaller venues, and obviously with a festival like Tramlines it gives bands an opportunity to get involved in something big.
Let's go behind your latest single "Call Me When It's Over" and what it was like to shoot the accompanying video for it?
"Call Me When It's Over" was one of a few tunes from a session in London with producer Darren Lawson. He was one of the first people we've worked with who we felt really got what we were going for, and he added so much to our tracks. Those few days in London completely changed the way we think about our tunes and has altered the way we do things in terms of writing. The song is basically about a person who starts to get involved with someone whose in another relationship. We shot the video with our pals Cosmic Joke, and it was filmed in a freezing basement at the night kitchen ( a club in Sheffield) on Sam's birthday actually. We basically wanted it to look like something out of a Miami Vice episode, the lights and the smoke proper setting the vibe.
How well have fans resonated with your music and how do you translate your songs to a live setting?
So far the tracks are going down well with people! We've just supported King No-one on a few dates of their tour and all those gigs were class. Our tunes are quite dancey so it's cool to see people reacting to them live, we quite like the challenge of supporting people because you've got to win the crowd over a bit more, it makes you go out and work harder for people's attention. We've always written the tracks to sound big live so it was actually the opposite way round in terms of translation, we had to tweak them in to a studio sound. Working with someone like Darren was quite a challenge and we all came out of it better musicians so I thinks that's been reflected in our live performance. We just try to go out and impress people.
What kinds of things do you like to do in your spare time away from making music?
To be honest there's very little time outside of our jobs and music! We're actually very boring hahaha! We work full time to self fund the band so our lives pretty much consist of working all day to do music in every other spare minute we have.
What's coming up next for the group and any plans to tour the U.S. sometime soon?
We've got a few plans in the pipeline, more tracks being released, playing as many shows as we can, anywhere we can.
Where can people find out more info about you online?
Lastly, how has being in this band brought you guys closer together?
I'm the only band member without any brothers so I'm not sure if this is accurate but to me it's a brotherly kind of relationship we have! It sounds cheesy and cliche but we spend that much timeless with each other, all working hard that they feel like family to me. We do each others heads in sometimes but we're stuck together now hahaha, I don't think the band would work without one of us.
Thanks once again to Danny for being so amazing in doing this interview! As if I think the U.K. music scene can't get any more awesome than it already has, I was sorely mistaken until I came across these talented lads who are crafting a name for themselves and are beginning to come into their own as musicians. It's only a matter of time before people from all over, especially the U.S. become intimately familiar with these Brits. For more on Bayonet, please check them out at the aforementioned links above.