Interview : DARMA – Mug Shots, Guitar Music isn’t dead and yogurt.
1. You’re a Manchester band but is it fair to say you are as well known in Sheffield?
I’d say so – maybe even more so in Sheffield actually. There are more bands similar to us knocking around which has meant we’ve found it easier to make in-roads into the scene in Sheffield.
2. What’s the major differences between the two cities you reckon?
The scene in Sheff is more vibrant and fresh. You’re still coming off the back of the Arctic Monkeys/BMTH surge which is still resonating around. We’ve not had a massive band come from Manchester since.. well, probably fucking Oasis.
Everyone around here tends to stick around for all the bands as well, which is pretty fucking decent. All the bands encourage it, there’s a feeling of doing it together which is seriously something Manchester’s been lacking.
3. Your new EP is out in a few weeks. What should we expect?
A modern, British take on a classic grunge formula. We’re obviously going to say this but it’s the best stuff we’ve ever put out. We knew we were going to really take these songs the distance and wanted to reach a bigger audience – we sit in a void between wanting to appeal to crowds with a pop sensibility and writing music that’s heavier and true to who we are as people. These songs are by far the most clearly realised version of that.
4. For some time people have been saying that guitar music is dead. As a very proud guitar band what’s your thoughts on that?
Guitar music will never die. Music diversifies and new genres come out but the people who gravitate towards guitar based music always will. And even then – why specify? Slaves covered grime songs – grime artists sample rock bands. We’re all creators, we can all appreciate and pay homage to all kinds of music.
5. Which of the band is most likely to get arrested? Why?
Isaac. He just does stupid shit. Plus he’d probably look the best having his mug shot taken…
6. It’s fair to say that your live shows are pretty phenomenal. Who’s the best band you’ve ever seen live?
Cheers! I’ll fucking take that! Christ, there have been a few and all for different reasons. Muse obviously stand out for the sheer levels of theatre. Tame Impala were a really tight unit. At The Drive In for energy levels. Now I think of it, I feel like I take something different from every band I see live. There’s just something about Dave Grohl that puts the Foo’s on another level.
7. Do you have any big shows coming up?
Tramlines is always a big one, the atmosphere and receptivity of people to new music over that weekend makes it special. We’ve also got the EP release coming up which we’re going to make sure is pretty. fucking. special.
8. What’s the plan for the next 12 months?
We’ve got another load of songs ready to go and we’re always adding dates to gigs here there and everywhere. Bigger picture is about growing the band to a point it’s financially self-supporting. Then we quit our jobs and hit it full time.
9. We’ve heard there is a bit of a bromance with Sheffield’s own TEEFF? How do you know each other?
Have you seen them? They’re gorgeous. We played a gig with them a while ago and they have some incredibly good tunes, Alex’s tone had Harry clambering to the front to try to see his pedal board and Ryan’s drumming and singing style was something we just instantly fell for. Simple, understated and absolutely perfect. Also – a garage rock cover of Are Friends Electric?! We were IN and have been ever since.
10. If you could play any stage/room in the world where would it be?
I think the Pyramid stage is the one where you’d walk out and be like “Yeah. We’ve finally made it” That’s the absolute ultimate flag in the ground for any band. Also given that we rehearse a stones throw from the Etihad, that’d be a personal milestone for all three of us. To have taken something from a tiny room in an old mill to a stage show fit for a stadium would be the greatest accomplishment.
11. Finally. Frozen Yoghurt? Fucking awesome or Fucking Depressing.
Ahh, fucking depressing innit. Ice cream for people who can’t face reality. (See also; wankers, sorbet)