Hey Affairs, so I know you guys all met at Hull University. What were you studying and what brought you all together?
Hi Born. Thanks for taking the time out to chat to us. We studied a variety of degrees really. varying from music related stuff to drama and media. Think we had the right cocktail of knowledge going on to bring us together. Me (Liam) and Daniel had been writing stuff before AFFAIRS began, dross that no one will ever hear looking back at it. Daniel also started throwing some bits together with our bassist Jack so we had the basics of a few tracks floating about. We happened to stumble across our singer at an open mic night and his voice spoke for its self to be honest. And our drummer Mike, auditioned for us. Everything fell in to place pretty naturally, nothing forced.
What did your collective parents think when you left university and decided to pursue music as opposed to your degrees? (Fortunately it has paid off for you)
We all come from pretty creative family backgrounds to be honest so they were all pretty supportive when it all started to kick off. Jame’s parents are both operatic singers and were pretty successful with it at one point. At the end of the day I think they support us doing what we love doing. The degrees are always there to fall back on should we need them.
You’ve already been noticed by tastemakers such as Chris Hawkins, Steve Lamacq and Janice Long, how has the support been for your music so far and how critical do you think it is to be championed by editors/radio presenters/introducing sessions etc?
As a new band I think you always look up to the big league radio play, which can be a tough hill to climb and even tougher to gain the support of some key names. Especially with new bands cropping up every day all fighting for a tiny 3minute slot of a radio show. At the end of the day these people can get your music in front of a keen listening audience it depends what you want from your band really exposure, or do you just love what you’re doing regardless of who is listening. We have been lucky in the sense that we write what we want to write and it’s paid off.
You have a sound that would be quite at home in the 80s, who would you say are your biggest influences?
The 80s thing is something that pops up a lot. There certainly are some 80s elements in there. We grew up with 80s stuff around us that our parents would play. I guess subconsciously this has come through, as it’s not something we focus on creating. To be fair though, who doesn’t love a good synth hook. We try not to take influence from any bands directly and more the world around us. So situations, literature and films usually get played around with. Any band that can make us step back and think ‘Fuck, what did I just see’ influence us to do better I guess.
You’ve recently released your ‘Stained Gold’ EP. Could you tell us a little about how you went about creating this collection and the inspiration behind it?
We had a few tracks in the pipeline before hitting the studio that we felt went together nicely. We do think that a body of music should create some form of feeling or emotion and take people from A to B. There are a mix bag of subject matters on there to be honest. The lead single Runaway, which the video has been recently released for is about kinda about being young and free, living for that point in time and not really caring what the consequences might be.
Play covers the breaking down of a relationship were both involved have given up, Out of the deep covers family issues and Brothers is based on themes present in the film Warrior. Maybe these are all things people can relate to in the own lives, obviously everyone relates to Warrior.
How was it working with Ed Buller, he’s obviously worked with some of the UK’s most prolific musicians (Pulp, Suede, Courteeners). Did you feel there was an expectation to deliver?
It was an eye opener, I’ll tell you that. We didn’t feel like we needed to deliver, as we knew the basics of the tracks that we had the demos for were strong starting points. The ideas he brought to the table though took them to the next level. It was more excitement really, seeing what could be done to the tracks that we initially put together.
You’re a Northern band and the crowds in Leeds/Manchester are usually very receptive, how has it been playing around the rest of the UK? What’s the response been like?
Generally we love going anywhere we can around the country to perform to as many new faces as possible. Our past few London dates have been insane. Responses have been off scale, everybody has been really up for it. It spurs us on even more to make the show even wilder.
There are some exciting bands breaking out of Manchester at the minute such as Spring King, Blossoms, PINS, Man Made. Is it quite a vibrant place to be making music at the minute?
Definitely exiting to be amongst it all as there is always something going on. It’s good to see so much stuff coming out of the city and bands really getting noticed. Tends to be so much going on that you end up missing something by going to something else. I think a lot can be taken from the city itself for inspiration.
What’s your next step? What can we expect from Affairs for the rest of 2016?
We have quite a few things in the pipeline that people should keep their eyes open for. We are going to be working with some very interesting people over the coming months which were pretty hyped about. We’re hitting the studio again shortly to record a load of new material we have been working on and will be touring off the back of that around August time so keep your eyes peeled.
And finally, if you could each take only one album on the road with you, what would it be?
I’d have to say the best of the Beatles.