Exposed meets Prides.
With over ten years of experience in the music industry behind them, Scottish synth-pop band Prides really hit it on the mainstream music scene last year. Their performance at the closing ceremony of The Commonwealth Games propelled them into the spotlight – and 2015 is gearing up to be the band’s biggest year to date. We had a natter with frontman Stewart ahead of their gig at The Leadmill to get the low-down.
You’re kicking off 2015 with another UK tour, the final date being in Sheffield February 14. Are you looking forward to it?
Yeah, I’m definitely looking forward to it! It’ll be Valentine’s Day – you gotta’ spread the love! We last came to Sheffield when we supported Foxes on their UK tour last year, and a lot of my friends went to Sheffield University, so I’ve had a few messy nights out!
I can imagine! What can the folk of Sheffield expect from a Prides live show?
It’s energetic and fun. A big thing for us is that people have a good time – so there’ll be plenty of dancing!
2014 was a really big year for Prides. Any personal highlights?
We were really lucky – 2014 was absolutely amazing. Picking one thing is really difficult! We certainly hit a lot of milestones as a band. There was obviously closing the Commonwealth Games which was incredible, headlining the BBC Introducing Stage at Reading and Leeds, supporting Blink-182 in Brixton, our first UK headline tour which sold out – it’s all been amazing!
You’ve certainly been busy! When you played the closing ceremony of Commonwealth Games, it was viewed by about 7.5 million people. Was it intimidating playing such a huge show?
It was in a way. Obviously there were the millions of people viewing, and it was a massive opportunity, but I was probably more nervous about supporting Blink-182 at Brixton. At the Commonwealth Games we were only playing one song – so how bad can it go? It’s only three and a half minutes!
Do you have any funny tour stories to share with us?
Well, we’re all quite tame on tour these days! Unfortunately a lot of our funny tour stories involve getting drunk and being sick. We recently played in The Alps, which is bizarre, I know. Anyway, I attempted to clean up a pile of sick with snow, but the sick then froze and we ended up driving around for about three hours with this pile of frozen sick.
That’s pretty grim, Stewart! So, you’ve had a few EP’s out, are there any plans for a full album?
There’s going to be one later this year, before summer. We’ve also got another single out soon – but that’s all I can say for now!
Exciting stuff. You formed as a band in 2013, and have achieved a lot of success since. Does it feel a bit surreal achieving so much in such a short amount of time?
Sort of. All of us have been in bands before, which have achieved a similar amount of success, and Prides is the newest project. It feels like we’ve all been working in music forever – so in a way it does feel like a long time coming. I’ve worked with Lewis for about 10 years as well. But yeah, we’re very happy with the success achieved!
When did you get picked up by Island Records?
Me and Lewis were signed as a previous band about 4 or 5 years ago, and we didn’t really know what we wanted to do, so it didn’t really take off. We then started Prides and were lucky enough for them to still want us and sign us!
Your music has something of an 80’s vibe. Are there any bands or artists who’ve influenced your sound?
Tons! All sorts. Like you said, we have a big 80’s influence, bands like The Cure and Tears for Fears played a big part in our sound. Vocally and lyrically, I’ve been influenced by artists like Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush. But as well as the 80’s we like to bring a bit of fun. Growing up I listened to a lot of pop-punk like Blink-182 and Jimmy Eat World. When we’re writing we try and think about what will sound good live – so we like to write big songs that will fill a venue. The Killers are really good at that.
Other than the tour, the single and the album, is there anything else you have planned this year? You certainly sound busy.
Other than that we’re going to try and hit as many festivals as possible. We’re not sure which specific ones yet – you’ll have to wait and see!