INTERVIEW: The Sherlocks talk songwriting and first music experiences!
Last weekend, I sat down at the box office / turned green room of the Middle East in Cambridge, to chat with South Yorkshire’s The Sherlocks! This talented band, comprised of two sets of brothers (Kiran and Brandon Cook and Josh and Andy Davidson), are currently on their first US tour despite playing together for seven years. While we did talk music as can be read below, the boys ooze charm and constantly had me laughing throughout our chat. Their playful personas carry over to their live shows which Cambridge was lucky to see that evening. They played a solid, straight music-filled, seventy-five minutes filled with track after track.
While the room held a bit of a smaller crowd than their shows back home, the performance didn’t change from the feeling I’m sure there is back home when playing to thousands. The set sounded phenomenal and the band’s chemistry is undeniable. The crowd was wrapped around their finger within the first few songs. The band pretty much ran through their catalog ending on what seemed to be their biggest track here yet, “Chasing Shadows”. There were clearly die-hard fans in the audience which made for a really great environment for the room and band as well.
Find some photos below that our friend Matt Lambert took, as well as our interview with the band. just a few days after our interview The guys announced that they’ll be out with legendary Liam Gallagher as his main support on his Europe run next year as well as playing their biggest UK headline tour to date. The West Coast will get a taste of these talented guys early next year, but hopefully, they come back over to our side of the country too!
This is your first US tour but you guys have been doing this band for seven years. Coming to the US, what are the three things you had to bring with you for this run?
Andy: Phone Charger…that I’ve lost.
Kiaran: Underpants. Just one pair.
Brandon: A neck pillow.
Andy: One of the inflatable ones.
And then I know you just got back from playing Canada but you were in the US before that. How are you going about these sets? I know the debut record is still very new, it only came out in August but you’ve been writing songs for so long. For these sets, is it just a focus on the new record, are you playing some older ones?
Kiaran: Just same as the UK shows. Just playing the album from start to finish. Just cause the album is out, we’re just trying to get as much out of this album as we can. We’ll be touring it for probably a while longer. Just get back to the UK to tour, go somewhere else and tour it and just keep doing that for the foreseeable future.
The songs that are on this record, were some of them written really fresh for the debut record or were some of them years older?
Kiaran: It’s a mixture really. The oldest song is “Live for the Moment”.
The title track?
Kieran: The title track yeah. “Chasing Shadows”, they’re like two of the biggest tunes probably to people and they’re the oldest ones. Then there’s a song called “Nobody Knows” which is pretty new. There’s a song called “Motions” which is very new. That one was a completely different song and when we came to do it in recording, we just changed the song completely. If you were to play the original, it sounds nothing like the “Motions” that everyone knows. Just a mix really. We ought to call it the soundtrack to seven relentless years of hard work. It’s true.
Yeah, they say it takes your whole life to write that first album then it just comes like that.
Kiaran: What’s special about debut albums really is that you’ve got as much time as you want on your debut album then after that, if you get signed and stuff, you’re on this like watched time to write your second album. That’s why there’s some great debut albums out there because you can take all the time you want, we took seven years.
So you guys have been together for seven years. You’re two sets of brothers. When it comes to the songwriting process, do you kind of each bring your own ideas to the band? does each person lead songs? how do you go about the songwriting for the band?
Kiaran: It starts with me on an acoustic guitar, (starts singing) starts with me.
Andy: He just breaks into song.
Kiaran: Just break into song. Then I take it to practice and just play it to the guys then they rip it for like ten, fifteen minutes. Then when we get that all right and done with, I try to figure out what I ripped off.
Kiaran: Once I figure that out, I concentrate on making it sound good. Just play it and play it until it sounds half decent in the practice room. Nothing ever sounds too good in our practice room. So if it sounds half good.
Brandon: Especially when you record it on your phone.
Kiaran: Just do that really. Some songs might take a couple of days or a couple of practices and some songs may take way more practices till they sound good.
You guys obviously have so much going on right now. The record is finally out. You’re on your first US tour, you guys are all still relatively young, maybe the first concert for many. For each of you, your first concert that you went to and your first album that you ever purchased?
Kiaran: Can’t remember the first album I ever bought.
Brandon: Mine was probably The Kooks.
Andy: I think that my first album that I ever bought and actually liked was American Idiot by Green Day. Liked it from start to finish.
Brandon: Was that the “Holiday” album? I liked that one.
Andy: Yeah, I liked every single track. When you fall in love with an album. I actually listened to that today.
Kiaran: Is that the one where it’s like doo dee, doo, doo. I never bought a lot of albums. I’m trying to think of what it was, I’ll tell you what I think it was. I think it was DMA’s, it’s called “Hills End”. They’re an Australian band called DMA’s.
Andy: DMA’s is your first record? (Everyone laughs.)
Kiaran: Yeah well I always had my records bought for me. I don’t have many physical albums, CD or Vinyl. The ones I have got, they’re vinyl and I don’t have too many of them. They’ve usually been gifts or bought for me.
Josh: I don’t think I’ve ever bought an album for myself.
I mean people aren’t buying albums anymore unfortunately, they’re not buying the physical.
Andy: Spotify. What was your first album, NYSNC?
No, but close enough, I think it was Backstreet Boys, I think it was “Millenium”. That’s the one I think where it’s like “Backstreet’s Back”.
Kiaran: (singing) Alright!
Brandon: I think mine was Eminem.
Andy: Good call.
Brandon: But it wasn’t the proper CD. I think it was, do you know what a car boot is?
Kiaran: That’s weird. That’s not a CD.
Brandon: You know that “Curtain Call” album?
Yeah, the “Curtain Call” album.
Brandon: Yeah that’s what it was, but it wasn’t like the legit album, it was like a copy of it.
So it was like someone burned it for you.
Brandon: Yeah but they were selling them on the market for like thirty quid.
Then to end things off, your record is finally out. You’re on your US tour, kind of what is the plan for the next few months. From looking at videos, I know you’ve been playing much bigger rooms in the UK but it is just your first time here. Kind of what is the plan for you guys in these next few months?
Brandon: Six months you said. Yeah January, come back. West coast.
Andy: Think we’re going to try and write a few more songs. We’ve got plenty of material to fool around with.
Josh: I think we have a few weeks off after this. Yeah, I think we have a couple days off for Christmas.
Kiaran: Days off to spend Christmas with our lovely families and have a lovely dinner and write some lovely songs.
Andy: Open a few gifts, I have two pairs of boxer shorts waiting and some pants.