Yak – Exclusive GIGsoup interview from The Loft, Southampton

After their new 7″ single ‘All I Need Is Some Sunshine In My Life’, Yak have started progressing through their second UK Tour, which initiated in Brighton venue Green Door Store, on the 4th of October. Childhood friends Oliver Burslem (singer/guitarist) and Andy Jones (bassist) have come particularly far together, with the band’s first UK tour last May for debut album  ‘Alas Salvation’, culminating in them selling out the London Scala Venue. With NME describing frontman Burslem as looking like a “young Mick Jagger” its no doubt this band has caught eyes on the scene, especially considering being under the production of Pulp bassist Steve Mackey. The exciting band’s next stop on their tour, supported by rock duo Skinny Girl Diet, is The Loft, Southampton.

As the venue fills with speculating fans, mainly of teenagers but partially scattered with a few matured faces, it is obvious this band has gained a loyal fan base, with t-shirts supporting their title being fashioned by many. Particularly frontman and guitarist, Oliver Burslem seems to be something of a God to the jittery teen fans who’s chants of “Oli” overwhelm the venue. It becomes apparent Burslem thrives off of this welcome as he smiles and subtly greets the front row, and begins into their most well received song ‘Alas Salvation’. Inevitably the devoted moshers begin their fun and as single ‘Victorious’ rolls into the set, beers start flying in the air.

As new single ‘All I Need Is Some Sunshine in my life’ the noise density lowers as the crowd focus on each vocal sliding from Burslem’s and bassist Andy Jones mouth. The song evokes a haunting tone but none the less it is well applauded by fans. Burslem inquires to the crowd “have you got anything left in the tank?” and laughs as it is obvious he has put his all into the performance. Anger, joy and emotion are all marinated in the set and executed perfectly, the energy dedicated is undeniable.

GIGsoup spoke to the charismatic band after their headline set at The Loft.

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What gig venue do you find most enjoyable to perform at?

Burslem: I would say Brunel in Leeds, nice little venue and it is independenly run which is cool.

Best new band at the moment?

Rawson: Skinny Girl Diet

How do you feel before you walk on stage?

Burslem: Before a gig I always think, shit… am I gonna remember what to do?

What is your favourite song to perform live?

Burslem: It varies every night. I’ve enjoyed playing the new one which is called ‘White Carnivore’ I enjoy them all. But I do like that one because its fresh. I even like ‘Harbour The Feeling’ because its different every night, people are always shouting out different things.

What was it like working alongside Pulp bassist, Steve Mackey?

Burslem: Yeah Steve is good, he gets involved. He’s a great Yorkshire man, makes a good cup of tea. He is just real down to earth.

Are you a fan of Pulp?

Burslem: Yeah. Jarvis is wicked too. He’s remixed a Baxter Dury song called ‘Miami’ which is really good. It’s worth checking out. I was in a club in Paris last weekend and Jarvis was there, everyone is getting drunk and he said “check this song out” and I didn’t know what it was.

What do you think of The Loft?

Burslem: It’s good. I like it. Good size. Has a nice wide stage which I like.

What about in comparison to Joiners as a venue?

Burslem: Well Joiners has got a lot of history hasn’t it.  I’ll play anywhere. I’ll play in my grandma’s front living room. But I do like Joiners just because of the history and it always seems to be falling to pieces, as if it is going to close at any point but it never does.

Yak’s new single ‘All I Need Is Some Sunshine In My Life’ is out now.