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Tuesday 30 August 2016

Interview: Egyptian Blue On Dodging The Military Police And Playing Brighton's Together The People Festival

At this year's Together The People festival, there's been a lot of talk about headliners Brian Wilson and Suede – but the festival is packed with unique and exciting fresh talent too.

Egyptian Blue certainly fit the above description - the spiky garage rockers from Colchester who have been referred to by NME as 'promising upstarts' and by The Great Escape as 'music to freak out to'. 
 
After dropping their first single last year - Do You Think You"re Worth Your Soul (recorded at Electric Studios in Brighton) - the band have been busy ever since with a further single released in February of this year, and multiple live appearances, including several festivals. 
 
Samuel M. Love caught up with the band's singer/writer/guitarist Leith to talk all things Egyptian Blue. 

Samuel M. Love: First of all, I have to ask…Is it true that when you were practising above a jewellers in Colchester near the beginning of the band''s story, military police raided the building thinking you had broken in to the premises? Seems like the sort of rock n' roll story that could go down in music legend… 

 Leith (Egyptian Blue): Yes that's true - we used to rehearse above a jewellers, in a dirty little empty store room. Next thing you know we had the military police in the building…it was pretty weird, armed police and dogs are not my ideal situation…but what can you do? 
 
SML: Crazy…But a suitable story for your dark style. Your genre is pretty hard to pigeon-hole. Rock, psychedelia and scuzzy punk all seem apt, while you proudly refer to yourselves as "garage vomit". Are there any bands or musicians who have influenced this unique style? 

Leith: Garage vomit seems about right…I'm not sure what we do, but that sorta sums it up for me. Musically though we are all pretty into The Birthday Party, and anything Nick Cave seems to touch. Also, The Cramps - gotta love "em. The Jesus and Mary Chain we all like a lot too, and Thee Oh Sees is a slightly newer band we like. 
 
SML:What do you think about playing on the same bill as legends like Brian Wilson and Suede, alongside a wealth of fresh local talent? 


Leith: It's pretty good, Together The People's line up is great. There are quite a few new bands on there that we like, as well as The Horrors. 
 
SML: You and the guys have been banned from several venues, so I guess there are some stories there?  

Leith: I mean there are a few stories, but they are ridiculous if you ask me. We got banned from one place because the front of house speakers where broken by a booze-fuelled mob, which isn't really down to us. What can you do though? 

Live shows are fun for sure, although I'm gaining a bit of a habit for coating my guitar in blood which gets pretty messy…But venue wise, we have played Lock Tavern [in London] a few times and that's always good fun. Shacklewell Arms [also London] too, actually. 
 
SML: Armed police, and being banned from venues…You've seen it all. With that in mind, someone has to ask - are you going to be behaving at Together The People? What can we expect from this festival appearance?  


Leith: You can expect the four of us to try and play some music of some nature…if we haven't all drowned of tinnitus by then. 
 
SML:  Your singles have been launched on Soundcloud, while you have a strong social media presence - what do you think about the internet's power in the music industry these days? 

Leith: The internet's power is pretty scary not only in music, but it's just everywhere. It's a great tool, but I imagine the world was a much better place without it. In terms of music industry though it has changed everything really…but we don't know any different. It's great though - it allows you to easily access all kind of weird things. 
 
SML:  Despite only having two official single releases behind you, you've certainly been attracting industry buzz – with NME labelling you "promising upstarts; fuzzy, upbeat and lysergic". What is your ultimate goal?  

Leith: We are just going to carry on doing what we do, it doesn't really affect us. If people want to write about us that's cool, and if they don't that's also cool. We have a lot planned, and it is coming. New music will be on all the normal places and then we are going to get some physical things made up. Like videos…you know the score. 
 
SML: Something to look forward to, then. Finally, the cliché – for all those young guys still jamming together in their garages, what words of wisdom do you have that could launch them onto festival bills alongside bands like yourselves? 

Leith:  Our only advice is take your time, if you want to do something just do it! 
 
The Together The People festival takes place in Brighton's Preston Park on the 3rd and 4th of September 2016, with Egyptian Blue performing on the opening day.

Day tickets are now available and can be purchased via the following outlets: 

Together The People www.togetherthepeople.co.uk 


by: Samuel M. Love


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