Interview: Little Comets

Exeposé Music Online (30 June 2014)

Upon hearing Salt, the latest musical offering from indie rock trio Little Comets, it was immediately noticeable that the band and their sound have changed a lot since I danced along to their blissfully energetic One Night in October

at a small festival in Leicester almost three years ago. I chatted to lead singer Robert Coles about the journey so far, how things have been going with the new EP, and what’s next for the band.

Your new EP, Salt, comes out this month. What are your thoughts on the EP?
Good, I think! We’ve spent ages mixing it, then an extra week to make sure everything was alright, then we were working on the video the next week, so we haven’t really had much chance to actually listen to it yet! It sounds pretty different for us. It’s a bit darker.

Do you feel like your sound has changed since your first album?
The music’s different now, but it’s like anything, really. We’re four or five years older now. It feels like we’d be letting ourselves down if we were still doing the same stuff. We’d get bored of it!

So how did you originally get started as a group?
Mickey and I are brothers. He started playing guitar when he was 11, and our dad used to write music. From being little we’ve always been in bands, and playing music. Then we met Matt [Hall] and Mark [Harle, former drummer], and things took off. We decided we’d go and play in different cities, but not in the usual places. We’d go and play in areas where people congregate, like public transport or university lecture halls – that really got people talking. It was crazy stuff.

University lecture halls?!
Yep – we’ve played a few gigs at universities. Lots of bands will go to a place, sit around all day and then play a gig in the evening, whereas during the day we went round and played in lecture theatres – as a lesser known band, we thought: we could play to around 50 people in the evening, or 700-800 people throughout the day!

Who would you say are your main musical influences as a band?
I don’t think we have any particular influences – we just kind of write songs. But we all love music, and we have a wide range of musical tastes. I’m a fan of Fleetwood Mac and Bruce Springsteen. Matt has a pretty eclectic taste in music, though!

You’re playing a few gigs in the US this summer – how are you feeling about those?
Yes – we fly out tomorrow for a week, and we’ll be playing four or five gigs over there. We’ve got a really busy summer ahead of us – when we’re not gigging and playing festivals we’ll be recording, and it’ll probably be difficult to adapt quickly between the two.

What festivals are you playing this summer?
We’re mainly playing at smaller festivals – such as Lainfest, in Leicestershire, as well as one in Oxfordshire. Getting spots at the big festivals is really hard for a band like us on their third album.
We’ve almost got the level of exposure of a new band, and most big festivals prefer new bands. We enjoy playing smaller festivals, though. I really like festivals where the site is quite contained. It’s nice to have these festivals in the city, too.

What has been your favourite gig venue?
That depends, really. We’ve played at the O2 Academy in Newcastle a few times, supporting bands, and that was amazing. That was where we’d go to watch bands while we were growing up, so it was lovely to be there on stage, actually playing a gig. Our first gig in New York was also insane – we never thought we’d get to do a gig in America, and so many people came to see us. It was incredible.
We also played at a pub in Sheffield last year – we used to play at a lot of house parties, and it was like that again. At small gigs like this, there are no tricks you can hide behind – people are right there in front of you, which is great. For us, the biggest gigs we’ve played haven’t been the best ones. It’s always the ones that you don’t expect, that for some unknown reason you just love. I think the best gigs have a lot of emotional energy.

Where would be your dream venue to perform?
That’s a hard question – we’ve never played in Japan, so we’d love to do a gig there. It’s also somewhere I’d love to visit. Apparently there’s also a venue in the middle of Colorado, which is like an amphitheatre, and that would be great. We played in St Tropez in an amphitheatre in July and that was amazing, just being able to play outside in the sun. So somewhere warm, I think!

Image: Flickr

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