With a stick of liquorice in my pocket and adventure in my heart, I got myself to the venue and waited patiently for the doors to open. It was only after spending 90 minutes stroking the hessian walls and blocking the way to the toilets that I thought of asking somebody what the darn heck was going on.
“The show? That’s next door, mate,” said the nice man with his craft beer.
This comeback was off to a great start.
Thankfully I didn’t miss any of openers CHAMBERS despite being a moron and that is a very good thing. CHAMBERS are loud as shit and that’s why their name is in capital letters. They’re certainly a capital band.
CHAMBERS describe themselves as a two-piece sister doom band which is probably one of the best things I’ve ever heard and tops anything I could say about them, so I’ll just add that they’re really good. Here’s a terrible photo to prove I was there.
Also, here’s a video to make up for the fact that I wrote my notes in the dark and helpfully smudged them all, leading to this section being a lot shorter than it ought to be.
CHAMBERS. As somebody behind me exclaimed when they finished, “shittin’ ‘ell!”
Shittin’ ‘ell indeed.
Fuckin’ love this band. They just keep getting better and better.
Their new single kicks so much butt that if my butt had a butt on it then it would also have been kicked. La Bête Blooms are clearly as influenced by classic indie rock and Sonic the Hedgehog as everybody else but they stand out with their superior songwriting and passionate performances. Alliteration.
Opening with the wonderful TV Speak from their debut EP, La Bête Blooms played a fast and powerful set full of new songs. A particular highlight was the second song of the night which I am assured will be appearing on their next EP. It was all dreamy and mysterious and it made me feel feelings. Always a good thing.
Sadly, all great nights must come to an end but memories are for as long as you remember them. La Bête Blooms put on a great show as they always do and CHAMBERS were absolutely superb. Give ’em a look for me, will ya?
Welcome to part two of the Adult Teeth interview! This comes out with some remarkable timing, as My Pleasure have previewed their new single this very eve and it sure is a smashing tune. This was one of my favourites from the live set I saw so I’m very pleased to get to hear it again. Have a listen, and you can find the interview below.
La Bête Blooms, My Pleasure and Grecian airplay.
Sean: It’s really refreshing to see a band like La Bête Blooms with Daniel running around and stuff when you see so many bands just staring at the floor.
Lewis: I don’t think there’s any pretension with La Bête Blooms. It always seems really genuine. There’s just a real vibe about them, like they really want to be doing this and they really want be here and it’s all about that gig that night, like nothing else exists.
Sean: I remember I got the demo tape and Wishing I Could Kill was the first track. It was just like, “There’s something going on here and I don’t know what it is but this is really good.”
Lewis: Yeah, that was the first single we put out by them. They did the tape and it was shortly after that they signed to the label. I was really nervous about getting them to sign because I’ve known Dan for years and he’s a really good friend. I think they’re incredible and they’re just on another level and I was like, “Will they want to come to my little label?” I just rang him up and said, “Do you want to do this thing?” and I dunno, it was almost like Sony rang up and offered to put out six albums.
It’s been amazing. That first single came out and all of a sudden people are paying attention to Adult Teeth, then they did the EP and it’s all because of that demo tape. I was just like, now’s the right time to be saying, “Come to the label and let’s do something together.” It seems to be going well, the whole BBC 6Music thing was amazing – they were on Tom Robinson and Lauren Laverne.
Sean: Living With You by My Pleasure was on radio in Greece, how did that happen?
Lewis: Yeah, bizarrely. I don’t know how it happened. I sent press releases to so many thousands of people that maybe it got picked up, but also my auntie and uncle and two cousins live in Greece. I’m just wondering if maybe that’s got something to do with it. The city it was played in isn’t far from their village, but I haven’t had the chance to ask them yet.
Either way, it’s pretty bizarre. I was listening to it, obviously it was all in Greek and I don’t speak Greek, so it was like, “Lalalala My Pleasure lalalala.” It was great. It’s the biggest radio station in that city and it was like, “Wow, this is like BBC radio in Greece.” I’ve not had any Greek fans as a result but I know that people heard it at least.
The whole thing with that first My Pleasure song, I was so nervous about starting a new project because this is my third one. I was in a band called Jesus Christ, we named it as such just to be annoying and no one could ever find us on Google. We had a nice following in Hull but we broke up. Then I’m in Glass Delusion which is semi-hiatus at the moment but it’s still a thing.
Then there’s My Pleasure which is just a solo thing, but yeah, I was really nervous about getting it out. I thought no one was gonna care but actually within a few days the single was on 6Music, it was on BBC Introducing and it was on BBC Radio 2 at 4:30 in the morning. I don’t know how or why. It wasn’t on anyone’s show in particular, it was just thrown on at 4:30. I can say I’ve been on Radio 2 at least, just ignore the 4:30 part.
Sean: Somebody must have been listening.
Lewis: They must have been. I don’t listen to Radio 2 but I read afterwards that it’s the biggest radio station in the UK. Y’know, Christ, that’s incredible! So even at 4:30 there must have been, like, truckers or something. All of this from one single.
It’s the best reaction I’ve had for anything so far and it’s just amazing to think how shit-scared I was. It’s the worst thing to kind of put so much love and time and energy into something and then nothing comes of it. It’s the worst feeling. That’s happened in the past, so this is just awesome. I’m kind of on a high about it – not trying to get ahead of myself – but I’m really, really happy with it.
Sean: That’s good, it definitely shows that you’re doing the right thing.
Lewis: Yeah, it’s all trial and error right now. It’s all about seeing what works and what doesn’t and you realise there’s no exact science to any of it. I think all of a sudden I feel like I know what I’m doing. The year and a half preceding the last six months, I was kind of thinking, “Nah, I’m not cut out for this, I’ve got no idea.” Then all of a sudden things started clicking into place and it’s great at the moment. Without bigging it up too much, we’re in a really good position right now and I’m very, very happy about it. It’s just persistence, I think that’s the key.
Sean: Maybe sometimes you have to give up for a little while and then you figure it out. Like, “With some distance I understand what I should have been doing all along.” I don’t know if you ever had a moment like that.
Lewis: Definitely. I mean, almost constantly. There’s been a lot of times where that self-doubt kicks in. I think there’s also a little bit of boredom sometimes, because when things don’t happen you’re just like [makes a downtrodden noise]. When that self-doubt kicks in, it’s like, “People out there are better than me and I’m not qualified to do this.” I think that stuff is what keeps you going in a way – that fear of not being as good as you could be.
Sean: It’s when you take that chance, when you’re really not sure about something right up to the point where you do it, and people respond to it. It’s a bit special.
Lewis: Yeah, exactly. It qualifies what you’re doing. There was a long period, maybe about a year or so, when we started Adult Teeth and it was almost like shouting into a bucket. There was no response from anyone. No blogs were posting about it, there was no radio covering anything, nothing even from friends on Facebook. That whole time I was thinking I was doing something wrong but I just kept trying things to see what worked and eventually got to the position we’re at now. It could always be better but, y’know, it’s comfortable now.
Sean: It seems that you’re on track for something…
Lewis: …I’d like to think so…
Sean: …whatever that is.
Lewis: It really is like stepping into the unknown. I mean, I know what I want – what I’d like is for people like yourself to come back and buy more, basically. That said, it’s not about sales, it’s about people listening to it and I think sales qualify it. Someone buying something, they’re saying they like this enough to spend their money on it and that’s the ultimate compliment in a way.
I’d love for people to come back to Adult Teeth like I go back to Domino Records or Orchid Tapes. There’s a thing about them that you can’t put your finger on, but you go back to it and you want to see what the next thing is. I want people to be wanting more from us. I think we’re kinda getting there. It’s a big ask and it’s not gonna come overnight. We’re not owed anything, just because Adult Teeth exists doesn’t mean people should be doing that, but I hope that we’ve built something good enough to qualify for that kind of status.
The Adult Teeth Recording Company is a pretty radical record label, in both senses of the word. Not Just Another Indie Record Label, Adult Teeth has released an impressive range of music for being only two years old – so far having covered spoken word, ambient field recordings and experimental/instrumental music. All this with a healthy lashing of rock ‘n’ roll. Mmm. Tasty.
It was the promise of excitement that lead me on an indie pilgrimage to Hull on a Thursday night.
I had a bit of burnt hotel pizza as I waited for my taxi, which was driven by a very nice man who almost killed us both a few times when he mimed playing the guitar as he told me all about his favourite Pink Floyd track. Fucking brilliant. That’s how I want to die.
The Adelphi is rock music history, and probably one of the few small venues to survive the waves of gentrification which have lapped our cultural shores since some bastard invented Milton Keynes. It’s great. It’s really great.
The back room of the Adelphi is something you should see at least once in your life. The front room is too. Go to the Adelphi.
I was able to peer through the telescope and watch the bands setting up, like I was Jimmy Stewart in a Pixies shirt. Ten out of goddamn ten.
I found myself at a teeny weenie table in front of the stage for My Pleasure.
My Pleasure is rock that wears a tie but is aware of it as a sort of silky noose.
They (or he) is really very good, with lyrics which are smart and sometimes funny without being obnoxiously so. There was even a reference to one of my favourite movies of all time, Falling Down (starring Michael Douglas before he melted).
All this makes for a very endearing package, and dude has the tunes to back it up too. For an artist who has only released three singles to date, goddamn.
It should be noted that My Pleasure is Lewis Young, who is not just a member of one of the other Adult Teeth bands (The Glass Delusion, also rad) but runs the label too. Sort of makes you feel bad for not getting out of bed on Saturday, doesn’t it?
I’m pretty excited to see what’s next from My Pleasure. It rocks, it pops, it’s great.
Foolish Atoms were next. It was meant to be a full band show but the bass player was sick, so two guitars was what we got. They were pretty damn amazing anyway.
Foolish Atoms have a sort of ragged folky thing going on, kind of like that third Velvet Underground album. Crucially, they don’t sound like fucking Mumford & pricking Sons. A major plus in my book.
They have a really special sound. You’ve gotta listen to them.
I’ve spoken a fair bit about La Bête Blooms before. I like them so much I even learned the code for the ê (alt+136).
Man, they’re just great. They make a bunch of loud and beautiful noise. The fucking drums, the goddamn bass, the bastarding guitars, the bloody vocals. They’re also just really, really awesome live.
Daniel is a great frontman. Sometimes he’ll hop off stage and go for a walk, sometimes he’ll have a lie down, sometimes you wonder if he’s ever gonna come back. Dude’s not all intensity though, and the band can often be seen laughing and smiling on stage. Both of these things are unbelievably refreshing and definitely reflect the passion they have for the music they’re making. Absolutely brilliant.
I’ve spent a lot of time travelling this year, and I’m so happy to end 2014’s travels in a great city like Hull with three great artists in one of the best venues I’ve ever been to.
I’ll be back.
Adult Teeth have a free sampler available which includes tracks by the bands who played and some of their other artists too, you can find it here. Did I mention it’s free?
A first class show demands a first class arrival. That’s how I found myself stuffing complimentary biscuits in my pockets. I’m not designed for luxury. I don’t know what to do with it, apart from steal from it.
There really was a person just for serving the milk. They even gave me macaroni. Just gotta tell myself that I’m worth it.
I’ve got a lot of pictures. Bear with me.
I was pretty excited about this show. I was good and did my research beforehand, so I knew I was getting into some pretty cool stuff.
Psycle were up first. I forgot to take a picture of them. Sorry, Psycle. Here’s one of their songs instead:
They’re a pretty amazing band. They take all the best bits of British and German psychedelic/experimental rock and stick it all together. Not a lot of singing, but a lot of great playing and sometimes some flute. Can you believe I hadn’t ever seen a drum solo before I saw Psycle?
I love ’em. They make the kind of music I could listen to for hours and hours.
That’s La Bête fuckin’ Blooms up there.
Yeah, they were amazing. Their totally excellent debut EP was played in full, with a couple of new tracks and classic-to-be Sigh Away in there too. This was their first proper tour, hopefully they’ll be back out soon. You should catch them if you ever get the chance. You won’t regret it.
If you do regret it, I’ll kick you. Then you’ll regret regretting it. That’ll learn ya.
That there is La Petite Mort. They’re pretty damn cool. They have a saxophone player. It totally works.
They sort of rolled on stage, casual as anything, with Pink Floyd’s Echoes playing over the PA. They were setting up, then they were playing along. That was how it all started. It was very classy.
First class, in fact.
See, I can tie this all together.
They’ve got a great sound, sort of like the first (best) Smashing Pumpkins album, with some lovely reggae bass for good measure. Did I mention the sax player? Very fucking cool. Billy ain’t got that.
Towards the end a mystery man appeared on stage. He had a harmonica. It all got a bit Peter Green. It was the best thing ever. Thank you, blues stranger. I’m sorry I don’t know your name.
Daniel and Lousia from La Bête Blooms were kind enough to give me a lift to the train station afterwards, where I met a nice man called Seyit who owns a catering supplies business in Sheffield and this angsty pigeon.
It seems a crime to pay only £3 for such a great night of music, so you should check these bands out and give them your £££$$$££$£.
I first heard La Bête Blooms when I was procrastinating in Aberdeen, sometime in late March. I bought their tape (you can still buy it) and I knew I was hearing something pretty special. They kept releasing great songs for free as I kept looking for ways to give them my money. It’s been an agonising wait, but La Bête Blooms’ debut EP is here, and it’s amazing.
TV Speak was a song I heard a while back, when the dudes did a session for BBC Introducing Humberside. I liked it. I heard it at work. It made me think of bats. My friend said it was ‘heavy’. I suppose it is.
And hold on a goddamn minute, because the video is just the greatest. I probably watched it ten times when it came out. It’s just perfect – great animation, great song and the band get eaten by sea monsters at the end. More videos should end this way. Life should end this way.
Everyday’s The Same is another song I was familiar with, this time because of this super-cool acoustic video filmed next to a bunch of shirts. It works very, very nicely with a full band – as do previous tracks like Sigh Away and Wishing I Could Kill. There aren’t any acoustic videos in clothing shops for those songs, you’ll just have to buy the tape. Go on. It’s £3.
Stay Away rocks to fuck. In some ways it sounds like a much faster version of the previous song, but in a strange sort of way that isn’t at all derivative, annoying or boring. It gets a little Mudhoney somewhere in the middle. It’s great.
All For You is the other kind of heavy. It’s murky like Humber sludge, I can’t write a lot about it. It’s kind of magic and stays away from distasteful guitar solos like so many similar songs do. I’m looking at you, Pink Floyd.
La Bête Blooms have consistently released some of the best music I’ve heard in 2014 – which has been a really crazy year for great British independent music – and I’m so pleased to have a little more of it. Check them out, it’ll be good for you.
You can buy La Bête Blooms’ EP through the Adult Teeth Bandcamp page. On the same page, you can find a smashing compilation – featuring La Bête Blooms and other Adult Teeth artists – which is available as a free download or a very cheap CD.