Review and interview: The K’s @ The Leadmill
The world may have gone into panic and turmoil, but this didn’t stop fans of The K’s from having a good old bounce around in Leadmill on Thursday night. Exposed manage to grab a few words with the cheeky chaps from Merseyside before show two of their tour, and might I add the only band to offer me a can of red stripe and slice of pizza during an interview.
How are you feeling about tonight’s show?
Jamie: Really excited, aren’t we? We did Cafe Totem last year, which was a really small venue, so to play here tonight, yeah, it’s a really good venue and the soundcheck sounds good, doesn’t it?
Dexter: Backstage is all comfy and warm.
Jamie: That’s all that really matters. We’ve been watching how it’s made for hours – that’s not a joke by the way, we really are that boring. Nah, we’re all a bit rough today.
Oh, because you played Nottingham last night?
Jamie: Yeah, that was a great gig we just all had a bit too much to drink, all got a bit excited.
So, what have you done today to prepare for this gig?
Dexter: Absolutely f**k all.
Jamie: When you’re doing it night after night you don’t really need to do anything except get on the stage. The important thing for us is having that relaxation, not relaxation so to speak, but time to chill out and stuff, and have a couple of beers and stuff – that’s the best way to prepare for any gig. Its mint being on the road but it’s also f**king knackering, you know? You’re travelling, getting pissed, and travelling.
Yeah, you’ve definitely got to have that chill time in between.
Jamie: We did order a pizza half an hour ago now though and it’s still not come – we’re gunna be on stage with f**king pizza boxes!
Do you have any specific pre-gig warm up songs? Because I feel like if I was in a band mine would be ‘Fell In Love With A Girl’ by The White Stripes.
Jamie: Ooh La La.
Dexter: by the Faces.
Jamie: We all sing that together.
Dexter: It’s not a song that gets you in the mood but it’s just an iconic song.
Jamie: And we just love it, don’t we? ‘Cos we were touring somewhere in Europe, can’t remember where it was.
Jamie: Yeah, and we were bladdered and singing it. Now anytime that song comes on everyone goes “aaaah” we all just sing out hearts out to it.
How did you end up as a band? Meeting and creating music.
Jamie: Me and Dex have been best mates since, like, nursery and we’ve been together since then I joined a band, and I was just singing in a music lesson once. I didn’t even know that I could sing, still can’t, but these people thought I could so they asked me to join the band. Ryan went to the same high school as us but he’s a little bit older. We were together in school – not like boyfriend and boyfriend – and were in a band together then everyone went to college and uni and stuff and we f**cked it off then we just got it back together.
Would you put yourselves in a genre, and if so, which one?
Jamie: Errr the f**king best ha. No because we’re not punk, we’re not indie, we’re not like Brit Pop or anything. I know it’s a proper cliché thing to say but as soon as you hear us you know it’s us. We have got our own sound.
Dexter: Catchy choruses.
I think your voice is quite distinctive.
Jamie: Thank you very much.
How has the journey been so far for The K’s?
Jamie: F**king mental! The amount of sh*t that we’ve gone through, stupid stuff that’s happened, but a lot of it’s not our fault.
Dexter: We’re ready to retire put it that way… no, only kidding.
Jamie: I wouldn’t change it for the world though.
Dexter: Some of the best times of my life have been during this.
Jamie: We’ve built a team around us of people that we absolutely love, it’s not just people taking money off us or owt like that.We all get on so well and it’s just f**king mint… do you want some pizza by the way?
Ha, I’m alright thanks. What’s your favourite track that you’ve released so far?
Jamie: ‘Glass Towns’.
Dexter: Yeah… or ‘Aurora’.
Jamie: Or ‘Sarajevo’, it’s got a very special place in my heart.
Could you tell me what ‘Glass Towns’ is about?
Jamie: Where we’re from. We live near Warrington but also a place called St Helens. We live in the middle. Its main export has always been glass, like Sheffield and steel. It’s about how you’ve got your life planned out for you: you can have an apprenticeship at Pilks, go to school, go to college, and get an apprenticeship, and it’s just about us saying “We don’t f**king want to do that”. Not so much get away from the town, if you take it literally that’s what it’s saying, but we f**king love where we live don’t we?
How do you feel the internet has impacted your success so far?
Dexter: Massively. One sec, I’ve got a mouth full of pizza. Yeah, we really focused on social media at the start because we knew that’s where you get people asking questions.
Jamie: Negatively. No, only joking its good but f**k me it does my f**king head in. Jesus Christ, tell you what, I’d rather be a band before the internet. One: we’d be millionaires by now, because people would be buying the f**king songs not streaming them. Some of the stuff people put about us on the internet, bad or good, I just think f**k off. I sound a prick don’t I?
No, no I do get what you’re saying.
Jamie: The thing is hassle can explode from nowhere when you’re just sat in your bed, something happens on the internet on social media you think f**k sake I’m gunna have to sort this out.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Jamie: I don’t know.
Dexter: I don’t think we’ve been given any good advice to be quite honest.
Ryan: Live your life with no regrets.
Haha, have you just made that up now?
Ryan: No! It’s good advice.
What’s next for The K’s?
Jamie: A lot of big gigs – a lot, a lot, a lot.
Interview wrapped up, I imagine more cans downed, and a lot more laughter as the lads waited to grace the Leadmill stage. The band kicked off their Sheffield set with the powerful ‘Got a Feeling’. The crowd absolutely launched into full carnage mode and sent their drinks flying as they smashed and crashed into each other. They weren’t the only ones enjoying themselves though, it was clear the band were too. Each member giving their instruments their all with smiles from ear to ear.
In between each track, true Yorkshire style, the “Yorkshire, Yorkshire, Yorkshire’” chants started along with “The K’s are on fire”. This set the wheels in motion for ‘Glass Towns’ entrance to the party. Like the lyrics in this track, all the punters felt this one running through our brains and coursing through our veins – that’s the impact it made. Fans jumping, belting out every line and in the current climate we are in where there is so much fear amongst us all, for just under three minutes joy was captured thanks to this incredible band.
Waiting patiently backstage was something that every single person in the room was anticipating, yes, I’m talking about ‘Sarajevo’. Like throughout the whole show, the band showed that just because you’re not a big band yet, doesn’t mean you don’t know how to play to the crowd and display some fabulous stage presence. The band were not only charismatic during this performance, but gave it their all and hit every note with complete utter precision.
I left this show with my gob well and truly smacked. These lads are not only great performers and producers but have some of the best personalities I’ve come across so far. I believe they have everything it takes to not only go far but exceed expectations too, just like they did with me.
Good luck lads, what you have is really something.