There’s a lot to be said for just not fucking off… that’s down to grafting, really.
It’s a relief when a band deliver in the face of high expectations — and Everything Everything did exactly that with their third record this summer. Theirs was one typified by festival slots and TV appearances, and now comes a massive tour to cap it all off. I spoke with Jeremy Pritchard to see how things are shaping up.
“The summer was obviously really busy as the record came out right at the beginning. It’s been quite benevolent really…” The record in question is of course the vibrant and vital ‘Get To Heaven’. It saw the band delve into the weightier, global issues, although upon first listen you might not notice — as the band’s precise, rhythmic sound can often mask it all.
“It’s pretty uncompromising in terms of the meanings. Jon [Higgs, vocals] was bringing different ideas and moods into the creative process and there was quite a dark picture building up. The rest of us were countering it with quite bold and bright music… Even before that first stage, just having conversations on the tour bus, we said we should make a quick, hard and hearty record. We came back to that.”
The album was due to be called ‘Give Me The Gun’, an idea which was forced to be shelved following the Charlie Hebdo shootings. Nevertheless, you can still sense the important nature of this album. Jeremy believes the record has connected with people in a more personal way than anything they’ve done before. “I didn’t necessarily expect that. I think it was maybe dealing with a lot of things that people could see around them, the kinds of international issues that people are feeling really used by. Jon was obviously feeling the same way and he wanted to put that into a record. I didn’t know if people would be up for that, but they were and I think they found it really alleviating. We’ve been so pleased with the way people have taken to it.”
The release is seen as a step up in subject matter, but also in sheer work. “There’s a lot to be said for just not fucking off. That starts to snowball in people’s consciousness. If you look at bands like The Maccabees and Foals, they’re a bit further ahead of us but we consider them our contemporaries. They’ve both really quietly and gradually established themselves the leading guitar groups in the country and that’s down to grafting, really.”
Jeremy comes across as very disillusioned with the whole chart process.”I think it’s all worked out well for us. It would have been nice to have made it into the top five, but in the end that dog-and-pony show doesn’t matter anyway. It lasts one week and everyone has forgotten about it again, what really matters to us is touring. Those two shows we did at Glastonbury for example. The one on the Other Stage was really extraordinary; it was probably one of our favourite gigs ever. Then the second one was on a much smaller scale, but very emotionally intense. It felt like something had occurred; they both felt like a victory.”
It’s nice to know where the band’s priorities lie as their upcoming Academy show fast approaches. “It’s going to be our longest ever show, with the most amount of ‘information’ in it; we’ve got three albums to pick from now. We want to play as much of this new record as we feel people will stomach and hopefully we’ve got a license to with this one. We could play every track from the new album every night and I don’t think it would seem like we were ramming it down their throats. We’re in a pretty lucky position right now.”
With that in mind, I pose one last question: the obligatory one about future plans. Jeremy takes a few moments before replying. “I think we’d be foolish and complacent not to follow this album up as quickly and to the best of our ability as we can. There’s no limit to our ambition — as long as we can do it on our own terms.” I think many of our favourite bands would agree.
Everything Everything play O2 Academy Bristol on 18th November.
‘Get To Heaven’ is out now on Sony RCA.
Check out ‘Distant Past’ right here: