Illustration by Lauren Radley
It's no surprise that Bombay Bicycle Club end up in a lot of peoples 'Ones to look out for' lists. Their blend of melodic and interesting indie music is a breath of fresh air in Britain's stagnant pool of three chord Topman indie bands.
We decided to find out more about them through a little interview.
Being a young band, what life experiences or influences have shaped your music and song-writing?
Girls. Every song can be attributed to a girl.
What musicians or particular era of music has influenced your sound?
90s indie and grunge bands like Dinosaur Jr. or Sonic Youth. A lot of folk such as Nick Drake and Joni Mitchell. Instrumental music, too much to say.
How important is it for you to have backing from the music press such as the NME?
I think it is important for any band to have backing from music press.
Now that youâve signed to a renowned label (Island) are you feeling pressure to become a commercial success?
Not at all. We all want to be successful in what we do anyway. Now we are concentrating on the band full time we can start to gain more success. Island records is helping us achieve what we want, we still have complete control over everything we do.
How was it working with Arctic Monkeyâs producer Jim Abbiss?
Amazing. He has produced all of our releases, so we have learnt how to work well with each other. Over the years we have developed our sound and come up with something we are very happy with.
With the music industry being populated with young indie bands, what makes Bombay Bicycle Club stand out as the next big thing?
Youâre currently on a UK tour. Are there any particular venues youâre most looking forward to playing?
Kings college London: we have played there quite a few times but have never played a headline show. Will be interesting to see how it goes as it will be our biggest headline show to date.
What would be your ideal venue to perform at, and why?
I always wanted to play at the Astoria as the first shows I ever went to were there. I guess we will never be able to do that now so I guess the Brixton academy is the next best thing.
You were recently quoted in the NME as saying your album âis as good as the Arctic Monkeyâs effortâ. A pretty bold statement to make. You must feel pretty confident about the album?
We are very proud of the album we have made and are confident that people will enjoy it as much as we do. O donât think its right to compare our album the Arctic Monkeys first album just because of our producer, they are completely different albums. people took what we said in the NME the wrong way, we aren't trying to say it's better than the arctic monkeys album. Just that we think its good.
You won the Road to V band competition back in 2006. Would you recommend young bands like yourself to get involved in this particular contest, or TV talents shows?
Yeah, I think itâs a good idea for bands to get involved in stuff like that. We had an amazing time doing it and learnt a lot. I donât think shows like that will make you a star or dramatically increase your fan base. But itâs a lot of fun to do.
Are you planning on playing any festivals this summer?
Yes. As many as we can. I think we like playing festivals more than any other type of gig. We donât know if we are doing any yet. But if anyone asks us to play we will say yes.
Of the current young bands around who do you really like?
Flash guns are good, we went on tour with them in September. I donât think they like us though, Suren sprayed Mr Muscle at them.
What was the last record each of you bought?
Ed- Tweez by Slint
Jack- A home made cd from a man in a restaurant in India. It's sick.
Suren- Noah and the whales album
Jamie- Kill em all by Metallica
Does music or lyrics come first for you?
The music comes a long time before lyrics, a lot of the time the lyrics are written right before we record them or have to play the song at a gig. This gives us time to perfect the music and our playing, and makes the lyrics spontaneous I guess.
Are there any further exciting BBC plans your fans should know about?
Hells yeah. We have nearly finished recording an acoustic EP. This should be released before the album comes out in the summer.
Lastly, have you decided upon your album cover? Was the end result an effort by one of your fans?
Nope, we havenât decided on an album cover yet. We are sorting out the artwork for our singles first. We have been sent some pretty cool stuff from our fans though.
You can check the band out at www.myspace.com/bombaybicycleclub