More about: Yourcodenameis:milo
Grabbing a few moments with guitarist Justin Lockey and drummer Paul Beresford before they took to the stage at the Camden Barfly for a mind blowing night of music, Gigwise talked with them about influences, America and espionage.
Gigwise: So tell us about the band
Justin: â€˜We could do it in 30 seconds.â€™
Paul: â€˜Go on then.â€™
Justin: â€˜From Newcastleâ€¦â€™
Paul: â€˜It started off, me, Adam and Ross met at school, just digging around in the school holidays and we went to university and Adam met this fellaâ€¦â€™
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Paul: â€˜Came together as a four piece instrumental and just rehearsed on Sundays.â€™
Justin: â€˜Then we got â€˜Frodoâ€™ in.â€™ (This can only be a reference to their unassuming front man Paul).
Paul: â€˜So we get the little hobbit in, recorded some stuff, sent it away and here we are!â€™
Gigwise: What about your influences?
Paul: â€˜No collective influences. Thereâ€™s no one band that we â€¦â€™
Justin: â€˜Thereâ€™s no band that we think â€˜we wannaâ€™ sound like themâ€™ cause everybody likes completely different stuff.â€™
Gigwise: What about you guys though?
Paul: â€˜Influence wise, growing up it would be Motown and The Beatlesâ€™.
Justin: â€˜I would say â€˜The Pixiesâ€™.
Gigwise: If there was one band you had to choose to play with, who would it be?
Paul & Justin: â€˜Smashing Pumpkins!â€™
Gigwise: When youâ€™re writing does one of you get an idea then build on it orâ€¦
Justin: â€˜We usually gotta rehearsal in a lockup in Newcastle and every thingâ€™s set up and arranged so if we come up with stuff or people have bit and bobsâ€¦â€™
Paul: â€˜It usually comes from a guitar riff.â€™
Justin: â€˜It usually comes from a guitar riff and then everyone chips in, then we do it five ways then record it. Then weâ€™ll listen back to it and go â€˜hmmmâ€™ and release a very good song.â€™
Paul: â€˜Just like that!â€™
Justin: â€˜We make it seem really easy butâ€¦â€™
Paul: â€˜If it doesnâ€™t work then we tend to ditch it.â€™
Gigwise: And youâ€™re touring at the moment arenâ€™t youâ€¦
Justin: â€˜Weâ€™ve just finished a tour with The Used.â€™
Gigwise: Howâ€™d it go?
Justin: â€˜F**king brilliant!â€™
Paul: â€˜It was a last minute one â€˜cause Head Automica pulled out and we were due to start, got the call and I was in Dubai at the time.â€™
Justin: â€˜We had to fly him home! Weâ€™re doing a show with My Chemical Romance at the Islington Academy- weâ€™ve toured with them twice, and theyâ€™re top boys and then a show at the Astoria with Presidents Of The United States Of America, then some more Kerrang! Shows, then a little bit of time off before we go back to Americaâ€™
Gigwise: So youâ€™ve been out there before then?
Justin: â€˜Yeah we did a month out there.â€™
Paul: â€˜The shows themselves were amazing.â€™
Gigwise: Are the responses that the American crowds have given you very different to the English ones?
Justin: â€˜Iâ€™d say theyâ€™re a bit more open to itâ€™
Gigwise: Obviously youâ€™re doing well over there, but have you ever found it hard to get the recognition you deserve over here?
Justin: â€˜Itâ€™s going well; when we first started off, we wereâ€¦it was one of those hype sort of things and we lost that soon, as over the past year weâ€™ve been touring and when we turned up at Reading we weâ€™re surprised to see the tent packed out- it was amazing; all the touring paid off. We kinda drop between indie or â€¦both sides of guitar music, like with NME and indie bands then thereâ€™s all your Kerrang! Funeral, Lost Prophets bands, so weâ€™re somewhere in there.â€™
Gigwise: So if you had to describe your music in five words what would they be?
Justin: â€˜Five words?â€™
Gigwise: Five words.
Justin: â€˜Hang onâ€¦guitar, bass, drums and vocalsâ€™
Justin: â€˜Hang on- three guitars, drums, bass, vocals!â€™
Gigwise: You say yourself that you donâ€™t slot into any particular music type, so do you think that when people listen to you they find it hard to place you.
Paul: â€˜When that album comes out and people have access to it and they can look at it and learn the lyrics I suppose, but I imagine as a first time experience itâ€™s pretty hard to digest it all.â€™
Justin: â€˜Thereâ€™s no in between; people either like it or they donâ€™t.â€™
Gigwise: How do you chill after a gig?
Justin: â€˜With red wine, Play Station 2 and Stanley - our ever wise tour manager; after gigs we usually travel to the next one.â€™
Paul: â€˜You just catch your breath back and stop sweating.â€™
Justin: â€˜Throw up!â€™
Paul: â€˜Change t-shirts, have some beer or wine and then youâ€™re good to go.â€™
Gigwise: Surely it must tire you out!
Justin: â€˜You donâ€™t really think about it â€˜till you get home, then youâ€™ve flu.â€™
Gigwise: What would you be doing if you werenâ€™t in the band?
Justin: â€˜I would probably still be working in the venue that I worked at before.â€™
Paul: â€˜I would still be working in a solicitors office, filing compensation claims for ex-miners or their widows and dreaming about being on a bus talking to you here, going ( he begins to mock cry)â€˜Why hasnâ€™t it happened yet?â€™!â€™
Gigwise: Where did the name come from? As not only is it a very long name, but itâ€™s quite an original one too.
Justin: â€˜We didnâ€™t want to start with â€˜Theâ€™ and end in â€˜Sâ€™ because thatâ€™s just a f**king cop out, as are most bands in the world.â€™
Paul: â€˜We opened it up to our mates and said have you got any suggestions, just chuck â€˜em in.â€™
Justin: â€˜Bez, Ross and Adam used to be in a band called â€˜miloâ€™ when they were f**king in between university and school, and â€˜yourcodenameisâ€™ bit came from an adventure book which our friend came up with, and then we just tagged â€˜miloâ€™ on the end.â€™
Paul: â€˜We used to be â€˜yourcodenameis:johnaâ€¦â€™
Justin: â€˜But that sounded too much like a weird song!â€™
Gigwise: If you were spies what would your individual code names be?
Justin: â€˜BLAZE! Thatâ€™d have to be in a proper 80â€™s font with like rivets in it and stuff.â€™
Paul: â€˜How about Blaze, and Iâ€™d have flames tattooed across my arms and Iâ€™d have a flamethrower!â€™
Justin: â€˜I wouldnâ€™t have one.â€™
Paul: â€˜Iâ€™d rather be an assassin and go kill peopleâ€™
Justin: â€˜Yeah Iâ€™d be a silent assassin!â€™
Photo by Linda Chasteau
More about: Yourcodenameis:milo
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