INTERVIEW: Lovepet Horror

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Laurie meets the lead singer of up-and-coming band, Lovepet Horror, to get some advice on how other bands in Bristol can make it.

Look at the Sex Pistols, they gave it a go and look where that got them.

People I talk to don’t seem very enthusiastic when they ask what I want do as a career and I say ‘be a drummer’. They have that look in their eyes, the look of superiority, as though they  think you only make it as a musician if you’re part of the illuminati. I bet they think you’ll only make it if you get a shout out from Mick Jagger in a Stones song because he’s your long lost uncle. They all say there’s too much competition when it comes to making a career in music. They are right, but sod it, you might as well give it a go. Look at the Sex Pistols, they gave it a go and look where that got them. Well not very far, they only made one album, but that’s not the point.

I recently had a conversation with Scott Clark, lead singer and guitarist of new Bristol band Lovepet Horror. We discussed his band’s new demos, Bristol’s music scene, some of Bristol’s best venues and how to make it as an upcoming band. Hopefully if you take all of this information in, you can slay Bristol’s music scene just like Lovepet Horror will.

I’ve listened to your demos and they’re very good. What was the purpose of releasing these demos on Soundcloud?

Just to reflect where the band is at. I think throughout the demos you can hear where we want to go as a band. We wanted to experiment with the sound of our music. So really these demos are to give people a flavour of the band’s sound. We’re also hopefully going to produce an EP by early August. We recorded  our demos at CellarTapes studios.

My favourite song off of the demos is ‘Detract’, because the lyricism is simple, a bit like ‘I Wanna Be Adored’ by The Stone Roses and also the guitar has a sort of Radiohead feel about it. Can I just ask what ‘Detract’ is about?

‘Detract’ is about devaluing something. I talk about devaluing a girl, so sort of forgetting about them in your head. This could relate to an ex-girlfriend. When we play live, we usually play songs like ‘Detract’. We’ve got a song called ‘Black Friday’ we play which is bit like the Pixies, if I can say that.

How long have you been playing music for?

Including my other band Carnaby, which I started in 2013 and this band, I’ve been playing for about three years. I started up with Lovepet Horror in February, so we’ve been playing for about seven months.

If you were to talk to up-and-coming Bristol bands what would your advice be for them to make it in the Bristol music scene?

I’d just say rehearse a lot and email people, but before you email venues sort out a Facebook page and a Soundcloud. So promote yourself as much as you can. I think with the album artwork it needs to be a decent standard but do whatever you want really. It doesn’t need to be amazing, not at this stage anyway.

So we’ve talked about the EP, that’s gonna be done in early August. What are your goals other than that with your music?

Definitely to try and play at different places to Bristol. We’re going to hand out free copies of the EP and the demos at gigs so people can get to know us before we start charging them for our music. It would also be nice to gain a small following in Bristol by constantly gigging.

Where’s the best venue you’ve played at in Bristol?

It changes in my mind. I think it’s got to be the Thunderbolt. I was going to say the Louisiana because of the size of the stage, but the Thunderbolt feels quite personal whilst performing. When you first look inside it looks like a normal pub with a small stage but when you pack the venue out it’s brilliant. Also the guy who owns it, Dave, is good at getting everyone up on their feet. We’re booked to play at The Thunderbolt in September supporting Little Triggers.

Who usually comes to your gigs?

That’s what I’ve been trying to work out. People our age usually, like people in their twenties. I’ve been trying to think what’s the best demographic of people to get as a band In Bristol. I think people from Stokes Croft are a good audience to gain, because the area they live in is so musical and vibrant. I wanted to try dance music to maybe bring a new audience to us. Maybe in a place like The Cosy Club.

How many people come to your gigs?

We started in February so we’ve only done three gigs so far. We usually have an audience of 20-30 people. I think it’s quite hard to bring an audience unless the venue promotes the gig as well as the band and especially if the venue ask the band to sell the tickets.

How did you get into music? And has Bristol influenced you in anyway to pursue music?  

I first got into music when I was 15, from listening to The Beatles, which then led me to having guitar lessons where I would try to write songs. I can see the visual side of Bristol eg graffiti, influencing many in music, but not me. With street art, I don’t really get along with it. I think it’s too early to tell whether I’ve been influenced by Bristol or not, but what I will say is that there is a lot of undiscovered talent waiting to be heard in this city.

 How do you gain inspiration for writing songs?

I buy albums. I get a lot of different inspiration for various albums. It leads me to write in different styles because It’s as if I’m studying the album when I’m listening to it and using some parts of the music in my own.

Finally, how do you act on stage? Do you improvise on stage?

Yeah I do improvise. Music energises you up so I let myself go on stage. I wanted to create a caricature of myself on stage so people are more entertained when they come to gigs, and also they can feel more personal towards the band.

I hope this article has inspired all you young musicians out there to start networking contacts or emailing venues. It is as easy as writing an email to a venue and asking for a gig. The Thunderbolt is probably a good place to start. I might do that now, write a 16-bar rap and rock up the stage. I won’t get paid and I’ll probably get chucked off stage, but at least I tried. You think I’m joking. Anyway, thanks to Scott for the interview, I learnt a lot about his band and  hopefully you have too.

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