5 Questions With Laminate Pet Animals
2017 has been kind to the Leeds based electronic trio Following their 7" vinyl release with Leeds based singles club 'Come Play With Me', we were over the moon to chat to them!
I know most bands hate this question, but we have to ask... Where did the name 'Laminate Pet Animal' come from?
Haha that's okay! Well. We really need to come up with a better story for this one but... we thought the idea of using a Palindrome for a band name would be cool. So we Googled 'palindromes' and 'Laminate Pet Animal' really caught our eye. Sounds kind of electronic-y. A lot people tend to shorten it to 'LPA', which is less of a mouth full. We were pretty torn between LPA and 'No Lemon No Melon'... Joking aside, we do try to tie in the idea of symmetry in a lot of the artwork too!
Your single 'Eve' was released on a 7" split as part of the 'Come Play With Me' singles collection! How was that? And how did it come about?
This is a funny one really. Well firstly we'd like to thank CPWM, especially Tony Ereira the label owner, who have been so supportive and amazing! The readers should really check out CPWM and the other singles if they haven't already! We already knew Tony from meeting him at various gigs, so when we heard about the submissions to get a single on 7", we thought it would be silly not to apply. The track 'Eve' was a strange one because we felt it didn't really fit our sound. We knew we didn't want it on our EP, so we submitted the song not really expecting much. Turns out people actually quite like it haha and, to our surprise, we got accepted for a release! Working with CPWM was a great experience. Tony is a real genuine guy, always wanting to help and we continue to work with him now! The idea of a split single is great because it brings different bands together. We are now really good friends with Team Picture, who were on the other side of our single. Team Picture are just awesome too.
Your line up has changed this year, now been joined by UBER talented Charlotte Jones. How has this affected the band dynamic and writing process?
You're definitely right there! She is amazing and completely made the band 100 times better haha! (She can actually sing, unlike Thomas and Tom). Charlotte actually joined because of 'Eve'. Many people think that the vocal sample in the chorus is Charlotte, but it is actually our friend Eve May Rowlands. Thomas had a recording of her from years ago and the main inspiration behind the track was Eve's vocal sample (so we named the track after her!). Thomas and Tom thought the track needed a female singer throughout...and the rest is history!
As a well respected Leeds based band, you will have played in some pretty cool local venues. What are your thoughts on the Leeds Music Scene and where do you enjoy playing?
Aww we don't know about well respected, but thank you! Yes we are extremely lucky to have played in lots of awesome venues around Leeds! The Leeds Music Scene is packed full of great bands and opportunities. There is just a great community of musicians and like-minded individuals. It is especially good for electronic music, which is part of the reason we have stayed here. Our personal favorite has to be The Brudenell Social Club. The sound in there is incredible and the crowd is always amazing. We also love resident sound engineer Trevor Baines. He always makes us sound much better than we are haha! We are super excited to play the new Community Room on November 16th too for our next single launch party! (Shameless plug haha sorry!)
What are you listening to at the moment?
We thought we'd give three bands each that we are listening to:
Thomas – Just looking at the last three downloads on my Apple Music, we've got PEAKES, a local Leeds band who have just released a new single, Waves. It's real nice! Vessels' new album, The Great Distraction is really good! And lastly Daniel Avery, I absolutely love his unique take on Techno!
Tom – I'm listening to the Kiasmos EP, Blurred which is lovely. Can't stop listening to Nate Wood! And also Half Noise. They are so so good, every song is awesomely catchy!
Charlotte – I'm listening to LCD Soundsystem at the moment, but I'm always listening to them really. I'm listening to Bon Iver because I'm in love with Justin Vernon and I'm also listening to Bibio because he's great!
5 Questions With... STEALING SHEEP
We have been quite literally OBSESSED with this band for some time now, so naturally we were over the moon when they agreed to chat to us about their journey and their take on being women in music!
#1 Stealing Sheep was formed in 2010, it would be really interesting to find out what you were doing musically prior to this?
Bex was studying music in Liverpool and was part of an improv experimental collective called HapPytap. Emily was studying illustration at uni and playing bass as part of an all girl band called Bexy Sitch and her own surfy pop prog solo project too...called Emily and the Faves. Lucy was playing sit down kit in an all girl gypsy rock group called the Long Finger Bandits and playing her own solo, gentle jazzy experimental stuff on nylon acoustic guitar with a few other friends. All of us played regularly together in these other bands at The Kazimier and at an anti pop / alternative style cafe venue called Mello Mello. Both the venues were ran by our friends and there was a lot going on at that time, it was the beginning of a lot of people meeting and starting collaborations!
#2 You are based in Liverpool, we are based in Leeds! What is your take on the Music Scene up in Liverpool compared to places like Leeds, Manchester and London?
It feels like each city has their own pocket of subversive artists and musicians and these groups kinda move like waves, having a big swell at sum point and then settling in again. We're quite connected to Manchester's islington Mill lot. This is kind of parallel to Liverpool's art crowd now spread out between the Invisible Wind Factory and the Royal Standard / Baltic area. doing similar kinds of projects but in a different way.. we're close enough to collaborate which is really cool. There's a space called The Total Refreshment centre in London and a lot of artists based in darlston with a concentration of similar wave length artist like Snapped Ankles, Joey Four and Deep Throat Choir...most of these artists tend to come out of squat parties or areas with low rent or utilising abandoned or run down warehouse spaces like we do in Liverpool and these kinds of places are quite transient and usually threatened by urban development. We don't know much about the Leeds scene...what's going on there?
#3 PRS have recently confirmed that only 16% of their members are female! Does this statistic reflect the music industry that you know?
It doesn't surprise us, it's hard to have the confidence to put up with rigid view points in the music industry and it's mainly masculine attitude. It can be an oppressive and challenging game. It's hard to get your voice listened to and to be taken seriously, you don't need a male affirmation for what your doing but it can be hard to be confident and for others to be confident in your work with out it because of the major imbalance of men higher up in the industry and in the marketing and media teams. We have always been magnetised to other women in the music industry...strength in numbers! There's a girl band in Manchester called Pins who we toured with and we have been supported by Gwenno (a Welsh solo electronic artist who played many of her shows heavily pregnant), we have collaborated with Deep Throat Choir too and they're a female super group making original choral arrangements of pop hits and original material too.
Our label and team are really good but again, mostly men. They're all feminists and think a lot about our message and what we're trying to do, they do not try and dominate us or sway our decisions, there's no real gender inequality with them. They wouldn't dare fuck with us anyway. We feel very respected, trusted and supported by our gang which is extremely important.
#4 As a women in a very male dominated industry, what advice can you give to other women in music trying to make their mark?
DONT BE AFRAID
#5 What are you listening to at the moment?
Really into sum Gorillas tunes right now and a new band called SuperOrganism!! Tiga, Uffie, The Weekend also SOPHIE has got sum cool ideas going on. There's a lot of Major Lazer inspired raggaton dancehall pop going on that I can't help loving (even though there's way too much sameyness going on!!) oh yeah...and you guys (Park Fires).
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/stealingsheep
Soundcloud - https://soundcloud.com/stealingsheepofficial
10 Questions With... LUNA PINES
This week we caught up with the girls of Luna Pines to discuss their plans over the next 12 months and how they find being a DIY girlband on the Leeds Music Scene!
Luna Pines will be headlining our launch night too! So don't miss out on a chance to see them live!
#1 So what is your story? How did you girls start working together?
Lotte (Drums/Sampling/Synths): I initially started the project in my room in my second year at Leeds College of Music two years ago, just as ideas. We then got it to work live last year with a completely different line up, made up of three boys, Ellie and me. We only did a couple of gigs, and when uni finished most of us went back home. That’s when Ellie and me got Olivia in, and we just knew everything about it was going to work.
Ellie: (Synths/Violin): I initially just played violin on a couple of tracks when we were a 5 piece, but when the boys left, me and Lotte definitely wanted to keep going. We brought in looping on my violin and I started doing synths too, and its been super fun to become a fundamental member of the band.
Olivia (Guitar/Vocals): I remember we were all chilling in the lounge when they didn't know what they were going to do (after the boys left), in my head I was thinking “am I good enough? shall I just go for it?” and I’m glad I did, the girls have really helped me with my confidence and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can create.
#2 We love the name 'Luna Pines'... where did that come from?
Lotte: I came up with that name with our old singer, George. I can’t tell you how many names we went through before we landed on it! We each came with lists of names, and came up with Luna Pines. I think it’s cool because I feel our music is quite atmospheric and that goes with the nature vibe of the name. But it can kind of mean whatever you want it to, I guess.
Olivia: As I came into the band later on I didn't have any input in choosing the name, but I agree with Lotte, I like it. I think it links pretty well with the style of our music.
#3 We absolutely love your single 'Off Your Island'! Tell us a little bit about the process behind this song!
Lotte: That song was written and recorded in like a day, and I was collecting a lot of MPC drum samples at the time, so I just created the beat and bounced it out loads of times to batter the quality and give it a more lo fi sound over the more polished production of the track. I then started going over it with melody lines, and we added loads of detuned layers to the vocals. I also used this synth called Kairatune, which is free and you can create really cool sounds on it. We really wanted an 80’s vibe to it, so I sent it to a friend of ours and he recorded some incredible saxophone over it, which I think really makes the song. Lyrically it became quite ambiguous, but it’s basically about feeling unable to move on from people who are no longer in your life.
#4 You guys seem to be gigging alot lately, am I right in thinking you are very DIY and do alot of the gig booking & management yourself? If so, how are you finding that side of things?
Lotte: Playing live is definitely my favourite part, but booking gigs and getting people interested in your band is very hard, and you get ignored a lot. But it’s not supposed to be easy, or everyone would do it. I think we’ve definitely learned that it’s a networking game, and once your on certain promoters radars and you can prove your band is different and reliable, you will be asked back to play other shows. Perseverance is always key!
Olivia: I haven't gigged a lot before Luna Pines and I’m definitely learning a lot in regards to getting gigs and making sure we are professional and committed to playing a great show wherever we are, and having a great time with it too!
Ellie: Lotte definitely had a talent and commitment when we first started gigging- she seemed to have a knack for getting us great gigs and getting in with the right people. It has made the moving forward and getting more known so much easier now. We all definitely have an air of professionalism that we have always understood is essential. I suppose that comes from having studied music at uni, but you won’t get asked back if you don’t treat some situations like its business.
#5 Your sound is very unique, which music acts do you draw inspiration from?
Olivia: I think it works really well because we do all have an oddly similar but very different music taste, which is the main reason why I believe our sound is unique.
Lotte: Thank you! Personally I’d say I draw most of my writing inspiration from acts like Bon Iver, The Japanese House and Tycho. I also love 80’s music like The Cure & Cyndi Lauper, as well as Post-Rock bands like Explosions In The Sky.
Ellie: First and foremost I’m violinist and instrumentalist, I have always been in love with the alternative- instrumental music scene of the trip-hop era (90s- early 00s) ; Groove Armada, Portishead, Hooverphonic, Bjork etc. I guess that’s part of the sound that I bring to the table.
#6 You girls seem to be making big waves in the Leeds Music Scene at the min! How do you find it, being a DIY act based in the north?
Lotte: The music scene in Leeds is great! Coming from Leeds College of Music we have so many friends in bands and it’s all so diverse so it’s a very special thing to be a part of. It’s definitely hard being DIY in a big city with so many bands, but we love the challenge!
Ellie: I feel like there’s almost more appreciation for DIY acts, maybe its because of the very welcoming Leeds bubble, but doing everything yourself to me has always been something to show off, although it does have its difficulties.
#7 What does the next 12 months look like for Luna Pines? Are there any new releases on the cards?
Olivia: We have releases coming out and working on new material which is all really exciting. Even though we have only recently formed as a band in the past few months I can see our progression already so I'm mega excited to see what we can achieve in the near future.
Lotte: Yeah I’d say predominately we’re focussing on creating a very expansive and interesting live set, as you don’t see many bands with our setup around, so it’s something we really want to hone in on.
Ellie: Yeah, we’re definitely working on new sounds within the set. I’m excited about the next twelve months to be honest, we’ve already moved forward so much and incorporated our different styles, and that’s only a matter of months with the new line-up.
#8 As women in the male dominated music industry, what advice can you give to other women in music?
Lotte: I think women should see it as an advantage, not a hindrance. There are so many male focused bands out there; it’s hard to tell them apart sometimes. Being a woman in the industry automatically makes you stand out, even though it really shouldn’t. I find it easy to look past the people who get confused or laugh about me being a female drummer & producer, you’ll usually find you’re better than them anyway.
Ellie: Although I have not really had anything face to face, there is definitely a way that men talk to other men when it comes to ‘technical’ things. Unfortunately, with all the gigs we’ve done, we’ve only encountered one female sound engineer- its definitely a problem, but I think something within our generation that will be soon to change if women keep just being completely unapologetic about it. I really hope so anyway.
Olivia: Just go for it mate.
#9 If you were to create your own music festival consisting of only female performers, who would be your top 5 headliners?
Lotte: The Japanese House for sure, she’s amazing. Also probably Marika Hackman, Camp Cope, Maggie Rogers and definitely Julien Baker, she’s incredible and her lyrics have a huge influence on ours I think.
Ellie: I’d have to include Bjork in there- she’s about as female-head-strong as they come, and a bit of an idol of mine instrumentally. Maybe Imogen Heap, Ainslie Wills and Lianne La Havas. But I’d end the festival with the Spice Girls, because, it’s the Spice Girls.
Olivia: I’d definitely add Corrine Bailey Rae, Jorja Smith and London Grammar.
#10 Best song for heartbreak?
Olivia: ‘You Could Be Happy’ by Snow Patrol is lit.
Ellie: Lost & Found by Lianne La Havas lyrically is the most emotional break-up song out there to me. But in terms of getting over heartbreak, nothing cheers me up like some classic 70’s disco.
Lotte: “Pictures Of You” by The Cure, or “Palm’s Backside” by Toothless & Marika Hackman, that’s one of my favourite songs ever.
If you want to hear more, check our Luna Pines on soundcloud here! - https://soundcloud.com/lunapines
On Sunday 2nd July, we sat on the 'Industry Panel' at the 'Women In Music Event @ The Leeds Music Hub'. To say we were honored, would be a massive understatement. It was absolutely awesome to meet so many like minded, inspiring women!
Read what counterfeit magazine had to say here - http://www.counterfeitmag.co.uk/live-reviews/women-in-music-music-hub-leeds/