ICYMI Interview // Introducing Neon Waltz
Updated: Jun 19, 2019
Words by Hannah Ryan
Scottlish lads, Neon Waltz, head back on tour this month, gracing Aberdeen first with their - and we quote - ‘Big, Ballsy, Beautiful’ sound. We had a chat with them late last year when they were on tour with Australian indie band DMA’s, check it out below.
Hey lads, how is the tour with the DMA’s going? Describe the tour in three words?
We're havin' a blast so far, yeah. They're really sound. Their whole crew are actually. It's a fact that no good tour could ever be summed up in three words...but, it’s been great.
What city do you look forward to playing the most?
We always love Glasgow and it's seems like the obvious answer, but we've never played the Barrowlands before so doing two sold out nights on this tour - it's truer this time more than ever.
The Scottish music scene is pretty notorious for being unapologetic and a bit mental, did it massively influence you as a band, if so, why?
Not really. People were either into us or not. If they aren't, then we're not gonna write to suit them. What's the point? We met a guy at Belladrum Festival the first year we started who referred to us (to our face) as ‘landfill indie’ or ‘pub rock’ or something. He hadn't heard either of the two tunes we'd released but he knew we were on the same management as Oasis, and, his mind was made up. From that moment I realised you're wasting your time trying to please everyone. Just do your thing.
Coming from a small town myself, I know the lack of a music scene can be a right bummer. Growing up in John O’Groats, was there much of a scene and how did you manage to ‘break’ the mould?
There wasn't a scene. There were a few bands making their own music that came along at different times and in most cases no two were ever the same genre. So a scene was never really on the cards. If I can give us credit for one thing that maybe some other bands didn't do, it's that we put all our eggs in one basket and went for it. But there's no doubt about it, that's not an easy step to take coming from so far north. I think right now though there are a few bands that look like they want to make that leap too which would be cool.
Any other main influences which inspired Neon Waltz’ sound?
I think that lack of a scene is a big one. We didn't have the other bands to bounce off of and because of that we were stuck in our own world. In ways was a little lonely but I think it was hugely positive and influential on what came out of it.
Describe your sound in three words?
I like this question 'cos we have a standard answer for it – Big, Ballsy, Beautiful. I think those 3 things will always be present in our music. We naturally gravitate toward them. And they all begin with the same letter so bonus points.
Your latest single ‘The Stranger Things’ came out recently, how’s the reception been?
Yea, it's been great actually. People seem to like it and it's going down well at the shows too.
How would you say the single has evolved since your debut album ‘Strange Hymns’?
I think it's probably a little straighter, less layering on the instruments to kinda get out the way of the vocals. We've given the song itself a little nudge to the front.
What’s the process that goes into the tracks, as a band, is it equal input?
It kinda varies but generally everything starts as one person's song or idea. We send it round the band first and then we all get in the same room and shape it into what it ends up as. I think whats coolest about the way it works for us is that although it starts life as one person's idea it never ever feels like that by the end. Everyone's input is crucial to the process.
Aside from the tour in March, what can we expect from Neon Waltz?
More new music. In whatever format feels right at the time.
Scottish icon that has inspired you? Billy Connelly
Best track to get ready to go out? Skin Of My Yellow Country Teeth – Clap Your Hands Say Yea!
Best love song? Love Is A Losing Game – Amy Winehouse
Studio or touring? Studio. Na, touring. Studio. Touring. Final answer. Ah I dunno.
Dream Glastonbury headliners? The Band.
One record you would keep forever? Joni Mitchell – Blue.
Catch them on their upcoming tour at the following dates:
14th The Tunnels, Aberdeen
15th PJ Molloy's, Dunfermline
16th Fury's Night Club, Ayr
17th Phase One, Liverpool
18th Leadmill, Sheffield
19th Prince Albert, Brighton
20th The Boileroom, Guildord
21st Heartbreakers, Southampton
22nd Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, London
24th Yes (Basement), Manchester
25th Hare & Hounds, Birmingham
26th Headrow House, Leeds
27th Northumbria Institute 2, Newcastle
28th The Mash House, Edinburgh
>> TICKETS <<