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Little Comets PDF Print E-mail
Written by Emma Howe   
14 11 2010

ImageI got the chance to catch up with a buoyant and somewhat supercharged Little Comets, pre-gig at Northumbria University. After being assured that this frenetic mood was the usual for the lads and they hadn't just raided a nearby red bull fridge, we got down to talking about marriage, being kicked by angry drummers and all things 2010.

First of all for those who don't know you would you like to introduce yourselves
I'm Mark, I play drums.
I'm Micky, on guitars
Rob, I'm the singer
And I'm Matt I play bass

Is this your first time playing Northumbria?
Matt: Yeah, we've only done gigs at the Academy really.
Mark: We did the sound check and it was a bit daunting really, it's the biggest stage we will have played, we normally have to climb over each other to get to our instruments, so it's nice to have a big stage.
Matt: The Bridge Hotel is our favourite venue so far, but this has real potential I think
Mark: Look he's actually got a smile on his face
FS: Is he not normally smiley?
Mark: Not that smiley, he normally finds problems

How has leaving the big record label at the start of 2010 affected your year?
Mark: At first it was a bit of a kick in the teeth in terms of a big record label, like Columbia who have all this money saying look we don't really see a future. But it was really hard work with them, a tug of war and no side would capitulate. So once we got over the initial teeth kicking it was great because now we can do whatever we want to do, basically if we wanted to record ourselves taking a poo on our guitar then there is nobody to stop us. Not that we would ever do that.

Album release date?
Rob: End of January. We've got a date actually. We are going to release the single Joanna and then the album on the 31st.

What's been your highlight of 2010?
Mark: There's this really funny story that I heard the other week
Rob: Is getting married the other week not your highlight
Mark: Ah yeah I got married, aye I got married but this story was really good, I was trying to be an interesting quirky band but ok yeah I got married so that is definitely my highlight. October was ridiculous, we were touring and then we got married so I'm totally knackered now.

How was Split Festival?
Micky: Yeah that was a great one. There was no sound check it was basically there you go and we were off.
Rob: We got to stay at home as well, wake up in the morning and just go so it didn't really feel like a gig

Image

How was it forming the band in the North East, did you find the scene very supportive?
Matt: It's quite clicky isn't it?

Mark: Yeah the music scene in Newcastle is basically comprised of four people who sit in the head of steam and talk about which bands they like, and bitch about them on message boards.
Micky: It's changed now though, I think theres loads of good bands around at the minute, generally hearing bands around the area was great support for us. Being inspired by someone was great, I really like the Polarsets at the minute.

I actually interviewed Athletes In Paris recently and they mentioned Little Comets as one of their inspirations in Newcastle
Rob: That's the guy who took you down!
Mark: Ah yeah, the drummer. We try and have a game of football against other bands wherever we go, it helps get us ready to go on stage, and this drummer just went in for a late tackle
Matt: It wasn't a tackle he just kicked you
Mark: Yeah it wasn't even a tackle, he must of thought I'd nicked his Mam's handbag or something because he just totally took me out

Who were your local influences?
Rob: There was a band called The Embassy
Micky: We've got quite an eclectic taste as a band, Paul Simon
Rob: But really the Embassy, they were around when we were like 16, 17. We used to go watch them and we learnt a lot about musicianship and the craft of writing songs. It made us go home and think how can I improve? It's great for young musicians to have an accessible band and be able to pick their brains and learn from.

Who are you listening to at the moment?
Micky: Everything Everything, I listen to them quite a bit
Mark: Yeasayer, there was a band supporting them the other night called the suckers they are really good.

What would be your top tips for bands starting out in the area?
Rob: Generally just do what you want to do and don't listen to anybody's advice. Concentrate on what you want, songwriting or visually but make sure you perfect it.
Mark: Can you imagine if they read this and take the advice and don't take your advice.
Rob: It's just really hard, people write on our Myspace oh what should we do to get noticed and it's like all we do is work really hard on writing songs. You learn a lot about writing songs by recording songs yourself. We didn't have the money to go into a studio so we bought a microphone and without any time constraints just had a go to see what we got. So I'd say buy your own recording stuff, spend a few hundred quid on your own equipment and your going to learn so much more than one day in a studio that costs the same.
Mark: Its great fun as well, I always think its like being in a classroom when a teachers not there and you can just try what you want at whatever time you want.


How long did it take you to get your live sound where you wanted it as a band?
Rob: I think we've been playing together for so long now,
Mark: Yeah, me, Micky and Rob have been playing together since school and we met Matt a while ago and we have just done loads and loads of gigs.
Rob: I mean despite being musically tight through doing gigs, we learnt the most doing house parties. Because you have someone in your face and you have to adapt to get across your sound, it becomes really personal. So I think we learnt a lot more from that than playing in venues so pretty early on.

What is it that you love most about playing live?

Matt: We did a really good gig in Norwich the other day and I think moments like that, when everything comes together it's worth it.
Rob: When you have an audience in the palm of your hand and their listening and getting into it. That's when I really love playing live.
Mark: Its like something you cant take a photograph of, theres this film about a guy creating the photograph and its almost as if someone needs to invent a device to capture whatever was on stage in Norwich.
Matt: A feeling device
Mark: Ha Ha yeah exactly. It sounds corny but it was like everyone was listening, everyone in there was almost having a conversation with us as we were playing, like, right, oh, so what happened next? That's the best. All the bouncing about doesn't do much for us, it's when people are nodding along and really listening.
 

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