As we say goodbye to our September catalog shot in London, we wanted to give you one more thing we love from across the pond… The Vices.
I first came across these fellas while I was at Bristol University via Myspace, yes that’s right Myspace! I was drawn to them not only because they are quite handsome but because they had great energy and their music was pretty fun and free. With a sound that they describe as “alternative-trip-rock-swamp-soul” you can’t help but become interested in them. They have come along way since those days – supporting the likes of Everything, Everything and Band of Skulls and continuing to churn out great lyrics with captivating videos. Their latest release Hotel Monsoon is dark and mysterious with a sweet swing, listen here.
We wanted to introduce you to these five lads with a special postcard video they filmed for us in the UK while in the studio shooting a video for one of their songs ‘Airport’. Say hello to Sam, Ollie, Rory, Andy, and Oakley.
Five man British band. Rory on drums, Oakley on Bass, Leonard on guitar, Sam singing, and me (Ollie) on keys.
Where in the UK are you from?
We’re all in and around London. It’s a great place to be – so buzzing. And we grew up in towns and countryside near Reading.
How would you describe your sound?
Imagine alternative-trip-rock-swamp-soul. It’s alt-indie, its progressive, it’s sometimes bluesy and it’s sometimes five White boys playing hip-hop. We aim to be original and exciting, always trying to push our sound, and playing abilities. We’ve been together for a few years now, and like everything, the band has evolved. Everyone is more precise now with the sound and making sure it’s realized when we record- this is not saying we polish and filter every note- quite the opposite, sometimes a guitar just sounds better with people laughing in the background.
Your influences are?
Musically they are vast… John Lennon, flying Lotus, Strokes, Animal Collective, Tom Waits, Radiohead, Omar Rodrigues-Lopez, to name a few. Gotta put Wes Anderson on here, love his films.
What album changed your life?
This is a personal one so I can’t speak for the whole band, but mine is ‘To Record Only Water For Ten Days’ by John Frusciante. I recommend this album to anyone for its analogue, melodic guitar ‘sing your heart out’ vibe, it’s raw and unique, with awesome 90’s drum machine beats. Definitely struck a huge chord with me and some friends when we were getting into music writing.
What do you love about the UK?
Autumn, London, rain, James Bond, the history and heritage, Prince Harry keeping it real? The Olympics was great and of course there are masses of inspiring music coming in and out of our small island.
What’s your favorite British meal?
Definitely not petrol station sandwiches on tour. It could be Mum’s roast dinner of course.
And lastly… what’s next for VICES?
We’re releasing a video a month this autumn, leading to a limited edition luxury vinyl in December, which is going to be wonderful. Demoing a new album in our home studios as we speak. The way we execute it next year is going to be original and exciting- watch this space… there’s some fun ideas. We’re working with a great young management company in London, the energy is fresh. And we’re hoping to come and play in America again soon, so keep an eye on us FreePeople!