Yorkshire-born newcomers DEADLETTER have moved on from busking around town centres in their early teens to making a racket in South London instead. The six-piece – newly signed to SO Recordings – are about to put their flag firmly in the ground with debut EP ‘Heat!’, coming this November.
Hi Zac, how’s it going? What are you up to today?
Hello, we’re getting ready to support Tropical Fuck Storm at Studio 9294 this evening.
When did you realise you wanted to make music, did you grow up in a musical household?
I regularly sang in school performances as a child and then, at the age of about 14, taught myself guitar. My mum always had music playing when I was growing up; my earliest musical memories being The Stranglers, Bob Dylan, Prince, and David Bowie.
Most of you are childhood friends, right? Whose idea was it to form the band? Did the others take much convincing?
I feel George (bass) and I grew together musically, having struck a real friendship after leaving primary school. I’d known Alfie (drums) all of my life prior to that, and he’d been playing drums with his older brother George, so when it came to forming a band, it made sense for the three of us to do so alongside one another.
Can you remember the first song you wrote together? What was it about?
I believe it was called ‘Oh Sam’ and was about an outlaw in Tennessee who was wanted for murder by a sheriff whose point of view the song was sung from. Not a trace of my actual accent stuck out.
What prompted the move from Yorkshire to South London? How are you finding it?
Living in small towns in North East Yorkshire left us with little hope of getting anywhere musically. George had moved to London for uni, so it made sense for Alfie and I to do the same. It was a struggle at first to find and then hold down regular work, but five years in, we’re just about used to it now.
What’s been the highlight of your time as a band so far?
Selling out the 100 Club the other day has been our proudest moment up to now.
Tell us about your debut EP ‘Heat!’ – what’s it about? Where did it come from?
The EP runs through various themes, from indulgence to materialism, the political climate to introspective reflection. It’s a collection of songs we’ve been performing over the past year and a half.
Music aside, what do you all do for fun?
I like to sit down with a good book. George and Alfie love watching and listening to the footie and the cricket. Will has a passion for woodwork, Poppy’s a DJ, so regularly spins the decks at various events, and James loves a good night out in Soho.
What are you working on right now?
We’re working on a lot of new music, which is inevitably forming the backbone of our debut album.
If you could check one thing off your band bucket list right now, what would you go for?
Being the first band to play on Mars when Elon Musk gentrifies it.
DEADLETTER’s debut EP ‘Heat!’ is out 18th November.