Earlier this year, alternative-rock quintet Echotape released their debut album Collective. Echotape are now set to release their new single Love Is Leaving on July 22nd. To find out what the band’s been up to since Collective‘s release, AMBY spoke to Echotape’s drummer Mike Burford about table tennis, funny moments at a service station, and what’s next!
AMBY: Hello Echotape, how have you been and what have you been up to lately?
Echotape: Hi! We’ve been great. Our headline tour promoting the album went amazingly well and we’ve followed that up with a few festival appearances. Last weekend was Camden Rocks and we performed to a packed out sweaty venue. The way gigs should be enjoyed.
AMBY: You have just released your debut album Collective. Which tracks are your favourites?
Echotape: Halfway Home has great sentimental value. Simply as it was the first song we wrote together as Echotape. It fought its way amongst the 50 odd songs demoed for the album and became a stand out track. Angels Sent For Us is also another favourite, it showcases our whole musicality and was the perfect album finale.
AMBY: What’s the story behind your terrific song Far From Heaven?
Echotape: Far From Heaven comments on the reality that all is not as it seems within the world. The lyrics are quite sinister in places. It was written with Youth during a demo session at his house. We really enjoyed making the video for that song too. Even though it was insanely cold in the Russian snow!
AMBY: Who influences you as a songwriters and musicians?
Echotape: There are so many aspects of any individuals life that can be an inspiration. Musically, we all have a common love for bands such as Neu!, Echo & The Bunnymen and Chameleons but even mundane experiences such as a phone call or meeting with an old friend can inspire you. I recently read an interview with a band who said they have no musical influences which I find ridiculous. There has to be a common balance between life experiences and artistic influence.
AMBY: Which three albums changed your life?
Echotape: Neu! 75 has been a major influence on me. Klaus Dinger’s motorik beat is seminal and his groove cannot be matched. OK Computer was another album to have an influence. I was too young when first released in 1994 but discovered later. It’s such a landmark in time. Last of all I’d have to say Kraftwerk’s Trans Europe Express.
AMBY: What’s the funniest thing to happen to you at a gig?
Echotape: It’s been relatively trouble free with our Echotape shows. One funny story though… During our Ireland tour we stopped off at a Service Station in a place just outside Belfast to get some food and the waitress asked us “You guys look like a band?”, we joked saying that we were the Foo Fighters. She announced it to the whole restaurant! “Everybody, it’s the Foo Fighters here!”. We had to come clean after laughing. We’re about 20 years younger than them and English so not sure how she came to that conclusion! I reckon we could have gotten away with it though.
AMBY: Which artists have you been listening to lately?
Echotape: East India Youth is a new act who is very exciting at the moment. Also been listening to a lot of Way Yes and Eat Lights Become Lights. The latter we booked for our Psychedelic Sunrise club night, which we host in our home town and is building quite a buzz in our area.
AMBY: What do you do outside of music for fun?
Echotape: I run my own blog site which gets incorporated into the Psychedelic Sunrise fanzine and takes up a lot of time. Music is the main passion though. Outside of Echotape, it would be going to shows, hanging out with friends who are in bands and just generally having fun.
AMBY: What song could you live without ever hearing again?
Echotape: Anything with Simon Cowell’s name on it.
AMBY: What has you excited for 2013?
Echotape: We’re set to release a new single from Collective which we hope to announce shortly. We’ve also got an autumn UK tour lined up and after recently being signed out in the states we’re planning to go out there later in the year to tour which will be another great experience.
AMBY: If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
Echotape: It would be people’s perception on their own surroundings and life. We’re all quite positive as individuals and try to embrace each life challenge and experience it, as it’s to be lived. There’s no need to worry about trivial details such being low on money or your job. Do what you enjoy and embrace being alive.
AMBY: And last but never least, what’s something about Echotape that nobody knows?
Echotape: This is a very rare fact but.. our guitarist Bowman was Hampshire’s Table Tennis champion during his school years. We played lots of Table Tennis while recording the album in Spain. Nobody could beat him!
Thank you Echotape, for giving us your answers!