Kath and The Kicks are a 3-piece alt-rock band hailing from Leeds. They’ve just released their EP ’20 Years of Screaming’ so we take a moment to catch up with the band to find out more about the release and how it’s all going.
You’ve just released your EP ’20 Years of Screaming’. How did you find the process of putting it all together, and did you face any hurdles you had to overcome?
We’d been gigging the tunes prior to recording which helped to refine them before going into the studio. We’re pretty well rehearsed, so it’s just a case of focusing and getting the foundations down between me, Tom and Lee – the bass, drums, guitar and main vox. After that there’s room for creative flare with the opportunity to put some over-dubs in and second guitar lines. The only challenge we have sometimes is that we have lots of ideas and not enough time! We would love the opportunity to immerse ourselves in recording somewhere remote for a lengthy period of time. We’re working towards that!
What about tracks that didn’t make the cut; was it difficult to decide which tracks you wanted to include?
We based our track selection for the EP on what we feel most represents us now – they feel good to play; they’ve been going down really well live! Our primary goal is to make sure that we have our supporters entertained and that people can rock out to our tunes.
Where did your record the EP and who did you work with?
We worked with a chap called Ben Hannah local to us in Leeds, and we recorded at his homemade studio. Fun couple of days!
What’s your writing process as a band, and how do you all come together with your ideas to get the finished track?
We spend more time together now as a band than we ever have so we usually discuss where we are at ideas wise in the pub 😉
I’m (Kath) the main songwriter, and musically I create the ideas which we then work on together. Tom and Lee are very good to bounce ideas off. We know our style, we know what we want to create, so we pick up and run with an idea that I’m working on quite quickly. Within our music we can go from raw rock to fast punk, to outright off the wall to ballads, all mixed up with alternative undertones. Sometimes if we haven’t done a rock one for a while the guys will help me start with a direction, a thought or potential content – a beat a bass line. Then I’ll close myself off in my home studio to let the ideas flow. Once I’ve got something down I’ll share ideas and demos and we take it to the studio to see what we can do with it as a band. Once gig ready, we test them live. That’s what we’ll be doing again for the next EP.
How responsive are you finding the fans to your music?
We have some very dedicated followers and we appreciate how they keep in touch with what we’re doing across Facebook and Twitter etc. Our tunes are all about connecting with other like-minded people who love live music, like heavier stuff and enjoy what we create. I think our fans know that we buzz off that shared appreciation, so it’s a very natural and genuine appreciation, people seem to like that.
Who would you say influences you as a band? Do you all have different music tastes, or would you say your interests are similar.
As a band we all actually like pretty heavy stuff. But we’ve all been in bands for years and there’s been a lot of different genres playing a part in our lives from rock to mo-town, heavy metal to alternative. A few bands we really like are Skunk Anansie, Queen Adreena, Pearl Jam, Rage, Joan Jett, Slipknot, Muse and Royal Blood. There’s loads of great bands and influences.
How is your tour schedule looking for 2016, and when can we next catch you at a show?
2016 has been pretty cool so far with the highlight being Pandora Fest in Scotland which was an ace weekend camping with the band and playing in a man made medieval fort up in Duncarron. We love that side of it; meeting other bands like us, watching them play, them watching us and having a few drinks meeting new people. Next gig is in Dewsbury at The Old Turk on 6th August. We got this one because we did a fest at Dewsbury train station – lots of the goodens are word of mouth and from meeting people at other gigs. The next big one is Saltaire Festival which we’ve just announced – we’ll be playing the main stage in Roberts Park on 17th September.
Which are your favourite tracks to perform live?
Usually the new ones as they have a combination of nervous and fresh aggressive energy. So at the moment I’d say Basement Bullets is a fave and so is Bernard’s in a Ditch. The old classics are fun too. We seem to be really enjoying Your Delight at the minute!
Being a band in the early stages of their career, how are you finding the process and have you been given any lasting advice?
We’ve all been doing music for a long time. Some of us have been in bands that have been pretty successful or verging on the edge of ‘success’. So we’re seasoned musicians and have our heads screwed on – we’re serious about making it together. The best advice is the advice we give ourselves after having spent literally years in the industry; don’t wish it away, enjoy the journey and have faith in your own abilities.
What other bands or artists are you listening to at the moment?
Kath: At the moment it’s Joe Bonnamassa, ZZ Top, Tina Turner and I’ve been listening to a lot of Radio 3.
Tom: Drenge, Black Moth, Rival Sons and The Bronx to name a few.
Lee: Royal blood, led Zeppelin, the usual culprits!