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Interview: Wolf Alice's favourite support act Vinyl Staircase



"Maybe one day we we'll make a modern day Pet Sounds with Wolf Alice."

Vinyl Staircase supported Wolf Alice last year, and the band's drummer Joel Amey has been heaping praise on the Surrey four-piece for a long time now, telling NME in 2015 he was "super excited" by their music.

We caught up with brothers Jake (guitarist) and Luke (drummer) Andrews from the band - completed by frontman Mike Thorpe and bassist George Ogle - just as they unleashed their latest single 'On the Radio', which we described as Stones-y, and ahead of their UK tour this month.


Here we talk about their journey so far, Wolf Alice's insane tour rider, if they will be working with the Mercury Prize-winners and meeting their idol, Matty Healy.


You’ve already garnered the support of Wolf Alice who have gone onto huge things - winning the Mercury Prize last year - Is that something you aspire to?


Yes, Joel and the band are a great inspiration to us. It’s great to have someone up at the top coming from the same place we’re at now, which gives us hope we can follow in their footsteps.

I really like the debate that the Mercury Prize Awards inspires, and if people were talking about our albums in that detail, that’d be an honour.


What was it like supporting them?

So much fun, felt like superstars. Eventful to say the least though, the drum kit we were borrowing from the other support band turned up 30 minutes before doors opened, and we managed to drop a full box of beers in the car park.

Never seen catering like that before too - waffles with toffee sauce backstage - absolute madness.


Do you plan to get into the studio with Wolf Alice for a collaboration maybe?

No plans to, but what a blast that’d be!

We usually discuss mixes with Joel, and I think he’s a producer in the making, so maybe one day we’ll team up and make a modern day 'Pet Sounds' (Beach Boys album).


Did you grow up raiding your parents’ record collections? What was your first experience of music?

We were definitely raised musically by our parents, long holiday car journeys listening to the Beatles ‘1’ album; it's a classic.

First time I can remember sitting up and getting adrenaline from music is when dad put on ‘One Hot Minute’ by Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Starts quiet, then BANG!


Which artists and bands did you start listening to yourselves?

Foals felt like music that we had ownership of.

It was a great mix of genuinely good music and feeling cool listening to it, not least because they were popular at school, too.


Is 'On the Radio' going to appear on another EP or are you working on your debut album?

'On the Radio' is a standalone single, like our single ‘Feel It’.

We’ve learnt a lot, especially recording wise over the last couple of singles, so we’d love to take that new knowledge and maybe put together another EP later this year. We have so many tracks that we’d love to put out soon.





Who would you like to work with producer wise?

Very inspired by Jim Abbiss, Ruban Nielson and Shampoo Press & Curl (the mysterious team behind Bruno Mars' '24K Magic').

We’ve always learnt so much working with producers, but we enjoy producing our own music so much that I’d say our aspirations, producer wise, would be to become renowned producers ourselves.


How has the band developed since 'German Wings' would you say?

In terms of songwriting, trying to write ‘hits’, developing our recording so it's more sophisticated and considered, and we’ve all developed our vocals so we can harmonise and sing gang vocals.

We’re learning more and more about the industry, too, managing to push on in a DIY way, partly because we are still completely independent of any industry representation.


Bands used to aspire to be on the cover of NME and now that doesn’t exist in psychical form. What are your hopes and dreams for Vinyl Staircase?

To be on the cover of So Young Magazine, to play to a packed out tent at a major festival and to headline a sold out show at The O2.

We would love to live off music.

To be the other side of my nostalgic memories of going to see buzz bands playing sold out shows at Concorde 2 in Brighton, then moving on and doing the same thing the next night in another city.


Have you met any of your music idols yet?

Jake and I met Matty Healy at The O2 show the other week.

What a guy, beaming with positive vibes.


We challenged Evan Stephens Hall from Pinegrove to a game of ping pong at End of the Road Festival, didn’t end up playing a game, but the spiritual connection was made none the less.


You’ve got your tour and festivals this summer. For someone who hasn’t seen your band perform live before, what can they expect?

A tight energetic raw rock band.


'On the Radio' is out now.


Check out Vinyl Staircase live at the following dates:

Mon 18TH – Headrow House, LEEDS

Tue 19th – Jimmy’s, MANCHESTER

Wed 20th – Sound Basement, LIVERPOOL

Thurs 21st – 60MPC, BOURNEMOUTH

Fri 22nd – Old England, BRISTOL

Sat 23rd – Moth Club, LONDON