AN INTERVIEW WITH…MATT THOMSON (THE AMAZONS) PT.II

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THE AMAZONS – heading back out on tour

THE AMAZONS have grown into one of the most passionate live bands of 2016 since we last caught up with front-man Matt Thomson.

Playing a string of festival shows, releasing more banging tunes and planning an intimate tour – the Reading band are sure to become a household name by the end of the year.

Loose Cardigan of Ideas found out what was new in The Amazons’ camp this time around.

HOW DID FESTIVAL SEASON GO FOR YOU? I SAW YOU ON THE KENDAL CALLING AND Y NOT LINEUPS..

 “They were two of our favourite shows for two different reasons. At Y Not it was the scale of playing the main stage to a big field of a lot of passionate people at the front, but then you have a ton of punters milling around at the back getting some food and they are there for the taking if you feel like you should do it. That is the fun with festival shows – starting off with a small crowd and ending with a really big one if you are giving a good performance.

“On the other hand, Kendal Calling we were in a more intimate tent which was cool because it was the middle of the day, but we could still have a cool light show because it is nice and dark. You work the audience in a different way because people are more receptive. You have to go and seek out a tent, you have to go and check out bands.

“Both were super fun – it was more of a challenge on the big stage but it was more about having fun in the tent! Both were awesome!

NIGHTDRIVING CAME OUT RECENTLY – WHAT HAS THE REACTION TO THAT BEEN LIKE?

“Much better! Every time we put out a song we get Tweets and messages and people tell us in person that they love it. We have had years and years of putting out music and playing shows and no one caring – never anyone saying they hate it, but not being able to connect with people. Whenever anyone compliments a track it is a bonus and really cool.

“It is fun to be able to play a song in your set for eight months or so and then release it and people really engage with it. It does not really matter how much radio play or YouTube hits you get, the real gage of what we like to do is live and see people singing the songs. When we are on stage we can see everyone so when people have got their hands in the air screaming it is great!

Nightdriving has done really well at that in that respect – it is a good sing a long song!”

QUITE A FEW BANDS ARE PLAYING SURF CAFÉ AND TYNEMOUTH IN UPCOMING TOURS – DO YOU KNOW MUCH ABOUT IT AS A VENUE?

“We have done a couple of shows with Lisbon and they have said loads of good things about it! When we Tweeted about the show after it was announced they said it was a good venue and stuff. I heard it was intimate and there has been a great response online. We are really looking forward to this one!”

THE LAST TIME WE SPOKE YOU WERE ABOUT TO PLAY THINK TANK IN FEBRUARY! ARE YOU EXCITED TO PLAY AN EVEN SMALLER SHOW?

“Absolutely! I think this tour especially we have been trying to get a focus on intimate venues so we can create a good experience for the audience. We could book bigger venues but we want them to be sold out, sweaty and tons of fun. A gig is always better when you are packed in like sardines and there is a real energy with the band right in front of you! You can see the sweat on each other’s face! We are really excited for the tour!”

HOW DID YOU FIND THE NEWCASTLE CROWD?

“Really receptive! The first time we played Newcastle it was a bit thin on the ground but really fun nonetheless – I quite like Think Tank, it is a good stage and it makes a difference when you do not have to walk through the crowd to get on stage. It has a really cool backdoor thing which for a performer is everything. You can throw your instruments on the ground in rock n roll rage at the end and just walk off without having to walk through the crowd. I like that a lot.

“I think people have less of an obligation to look cool the more North you get – people wear their heart on their sleeve a little bit more – especially with guitar music. Everyone seems to be a little bit more visibly into guitar music. We as a band love that! In some areas you don’t want to not look cool. We just care about having fun and singing and positivity.

“My family from my Dad’s side are from Stanley so it is always good to go up and see the family.”

DO YOU THINK MANY OF THE SAME FACES WILL BE ABOUT?

“I hope so. I hope we did a good enough gig back when we played Think Tank? that people want to buy tickets for this show. We have only ever played Think Tank? as support slots so hopefully we have done our job and enticed people to come. I know a couple of people who saw us at Beatherder who bought tickets for Surf Café right after our show because they Tweeted us so I hope to see them. I would like to see loads of new faces too!”

WHAT KIND OF BANDS WILL BE SOUNDTRACKING THE TOUR BUS THIS TIME AROUND? IT WAS FOALS, QOTSA AND TAME IMPALA LAST TIME!

” The Last Shadow Puppets! I’m not sure if they had released the album last time we spoke, but recently they have been right up my street. The string section in particularly – if we do get to do a second album you might hear some strings. Right now it is spot on! I love how The Last Show Puppets use them to weave in and out.

“We have been playing with a lot of cool bands who we get to see three or four times. Catfish and the Bottlemen I am really into at the minute – 7 from the new album is one of the songs of the year. Clean Cut Kid from Liverpool have some sick tunes. They are just great and so underrated!

“Flyte are really cool. They’re from London and we have met up a few times. But, yeah, I still listen to Tame Impala and Queens of the Stone Age a shit load. I really like that new Coldplay album – it sounds really bad, but it is so cheesy and positive! I went to see them at Wembley as a guilty pleasure.

 “You can’t beat word of mouth, though! You have got to connect with people, both live and with records!”

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Tickets for The Amazons upcoming tour are available here.

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