The London five-piece discuss the path leading up to their debut single ‘Know’
Getting the bug early on is par-for-the-course for most musicians, but Sad Boys Club have been playing together longer than most. Having dabbled in writing songs together since their pre-teens, the London five-piece have committed for the long haul, spending their formative years honing their sound in the shed of Bombay Bicycle Club and experimenting with their hand-me-down equipment.
The band have just released their debut single ‘Know’, and it’s been a long time coming. Originally penned when they were 15, ‘Know’ is a laidback and moody ode to the pains of being a teen, all surmised in an angsty yet euphoric chorus. Luckily, the Sad Boys Club were willing to divulge how they came to this point. Read on to discover more about the band and the single…
We really got into your new single ‘Know’! Can you tell us a little about how the track came to life?
Thank you. The song started as a loop just consisting of the riff and the pad synth plus a much more sparse vocal line, but after Tom (Maccoll, drums) decided that was all a bit tame and didn’t afford him enough time to slam some shit pretty hard, it started to evolve into something more structured and has continued to do so ever since. It feels like it’s continuing to develop live, hopefully that’ll never stop.
It’s your debut single – congratulations on the release! What made you choose the track as your introduction to the world?
Cheers – we had to start somewhere, it felt like a good tonal exposition of where we want to orientate ourselves moving forward. Or something like that.
You wrote ‘Know’ when you were 15. Why are you choosing to share the track now?
We always wanted to share it but various managers I’d had in previous bands had said it was too moody, so we never got around to it. It was the only track I found myself still protective of by the time we started Sad Boys so it’s where we begin.
Lyrically, the song seems to touch upon a self-consciousness and vulnerability of young love. Can you tell us more about what you were feeling when you were writing it?
There’s no great story to the track, unfortunately. It’s not a love song. Throughout school, I was going through a weird time trying to seek some sort of validation as a lot of young people do – it’s not always straight forward, particularly as a young male, to say you’re not handling things too well on your own, so this was a way of getting that thought floating into the ether. I remained too much inside my head and ended up losing my mind.
You’ve been collaborating on music together since your pre-teens. What made you all start playing music together at that time? Were you inspired to start a band by any other band in particular?
Tom (MacColl, drums), was my best friend starting at secondary school but he never had the latest FIFA (he still plays Fifa 12), and he had a very temperamental N64. His family are all musicians so his house was full of these magical, weird looking instruments we’d just fuck around with. The years above us at school were already churning out some good bands (Bombay Bicycle Club, Yuck, Theme Park etc.) so it felt like the done thing.
We started out doing covers of Bloc Party, Franz Ferdinand, The Strokes so I’d say they’re probably responsible for us starting out. Jake, and particularly Pedro, who we’ve just recently begun working with come from different musical backgrounds – Jake is very much of the Manchester school of indie, and Pedro was brought up on some really, really terrible American emo bands.
You used to practise in Bombay Bicycle Club’s shed! How did that come about? (Are you still in there?)
Tom’s brother is in Bombay. He lives with him and Ed and Ed kindly lets us use his studio at the end of the garden to rehearse in. Legend.
We hear you’ve got some electrifying new material waiting to be released! Can you tell us anything to whet our appetite?
New single end of January. It’s called ’15/01′. Our very own Pedro C produced it and it’s a scorcher.
Have you got any live shows lined up? What do you enjoy most about performing?
There are a few things shaping up for the start of next year, watch this space.
Who is the best live act that you’ve seen this year?
Been to a lot of great shows, it’s pretty hard to pick out a single act – LCD Soundsystem, Shame, Lorde, Killers, Foals, Alex Cameron, Alex G, The Maccabees farewell show… they were all pretty immense but HMLTD are who I’ve seen the most this year, they’re something else, I’m thankful they exist at the moment.
Who is your artist of 2017 and why?
Lorde, no explanation necessary.
‘Know’ by Sad Boys Club is available now.