Today’s track of the day comes from Glasgow four-piece The Van T’s with the excellent ‘Blood Orange’. Arguably their best song to date, the track comes from their new EP ‘A Coming Of Age’, released at the start of the month on Bloc+Music.
Having released their debut EP ‘Laguna Babe’ last year, ‘A Coming of Age’ appropriately shows depth and progression to the band’s sound with greater consideration of production and stronger levels of songwriting. With a real knack for melodic craftsmanship, they are able to build heavy, scuzz-laden tracks around infectious choruses that will get stuck in your head for days.
Their track ‘Blood Orange’ exemplifies everything we love about the band; bursting with intensity and attitude, it combines howling, grungy guitar riffs with fierce dual vocals from Chloe and Hannah Van Thompson, over the excellent interplay between bass (Joanne Forbes) and drums (Shaun Hood). It’s gritty, forceful and blistering with energy; a great example of the band bringing together their 90s influences and creating something layered, fresh and current.
GIGsoup caught up with drummer Shaun to discuss the track track and what’s in store for the four-piece…
‘Blood Orange’ has deservedly been getting rave reviews . Can you tell us a bit about it and what made you pick it as your next single?
We’re pretty blown away with the response that it has received so far! The track was initially going to be put out as our free download from the EP but after hearing back the first mix, we were really impressed with the production and were unanimous that this one was going to be the single. The song itself is about uncertainty within relationships and the worry and stress that can result from this.
Do you find that your sound is still evolving with each release?
Absolutely! We started putting music out basically as soon as we got together so it’s fun to look back and see all the progress and improvements over time. Every release gets treated as a lesson too so once we put something out, we’ll usually sit down together, have a listen and discuss what we liked about it and what we could do to make the next one better which usually results in the beginning of ideas for the following release.
There’s a lot of buzz around you guys at the moment. Does that add any kind of pressure?
Yes and No. It can be a little daunting to think about how many people are going to be listening and critiquing whatever we do but it’s not something that I would say is worth worrying about. Overthinking about things like that can have a negative effect on performances as well as writing and we’re all a lot more humbled that people are listening than we are worried about what they might think.
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You used to just be a duo but you added bass and drums to the band a while back. How has this affected your creative process/songwriting etc?
We’ve been playing full band for nearly three years now but Joanne (bass) only joined last year. Playing as a full band is a lot more satisfying as it provides an opportunity for creative collaboration and fills out the tracks with the instrumental depth that we always wanted.
What inspires your writing?
Thoughts and feelings, observing ourselves as well as others. The limits and possibilities of humanity.
You dip into a lot of genres as well which is cool. Who are your big influences?
We’re all into a lot of different music but I’d say our common ground is in the realms of alternative rock. Chloe loves the Smashing Pumpkins, Hannah’s into Ty Segall, Joanne enjoys the Pixies and Shaun’s a fan of The Bronx.
You guys seem to be a part of a new generation of awesome bands coming out of Glasgow right now. Can you tell us about being part of that kind of community?
The scene in Glasgow has really blown up in the past couple of years. It’s getting to the point where there’s a choice of local gigs to enjoy most nights and we often end up at more than one on the same night. It’s great that there’s a real hub of musicians and bands in the city just now and we’ve actually made a lot of likeminded friends as a result of it during our short time together.
What have you got planned in the coming months? Festivals, releases… any hint of an album?
We’ve got quite a few shows coming up and even more to announce so I’ll list the upcoming ones at the bottom. Working towards our debut album is the long term goal but it’s not something we want to rush into considering our latest offering has only been out for four days. The album won’t be done until 2017 so we might release another single before the end of the year.
09/07: T in the Park
16/07: St Lukes All Dayer
17/07: King Tuts Bar (midnight set on the Saturday)
25/08: Arts Festival, Edinburgh
27/08: Electric Fields
08/10: Twisterella Festival
08/10: Tenement Trail
25/11: Stereo (Man of Moon support)
This Van T’s article was written by Suzanne Oswald, a GIGsoup contributor. Photo credit : Martin Barker