Image : Ryan McCardle [Used with permission]
Dark/electronic/bedroom pop act Future West on the soundtrack to his life
The last song you listened to?
Vertigo – The Libertines
What is your earliest musical memory?
Earliest musical memory has got to be when I was about 3 or 4 and my two older brothers were showing me the video for Paranoid Android by Radiohead. You know the animated one where the business man gets out of the taxi, climbs up a lamp post and hacks all of his limbs off? Then he’s bandaged up and sat in a tree by guy in a beanie hat and an angel in a helicopter? Yeah, probably not the best thing to be showing to a 4 year old.
Do you have a favourite song that was featured in a film or tv show?
Nick Cave’s Red Right Hand being the theme song for Peaky Blinders works so well! But I love that there’s one episode that obviously has that as the theme music but at two other points in the episode they use Arctic Monkey’s version and another cover of it too. Three version of one song in a singular episode was such a cool thing to do in my opinion.
Is there a song that instantly reminds you of a particular person?
There’s a lot of bands that i’ve bonded over very closely with pals and relatives etc. but one that stood out for me recently was The Escapist by The Streets. Me and an old school friend of mine called Hooch were notorious for going on the mitch and listening to Jamie T and The Streets on repeat all day.
One afternoon we were supposed to be in school but instead we opted to go to his house and do nothing for the day, We had a music channel on and without warning this new Streets tune, The Escapist, came on. We had no idea he was even releasing new music and the two of us were absolutely buzzing watching the new video with the tv up full blast. I’d forgotten that ever happened until I saw The Streets at Electric Picnic there in September and I was transported right back to that moment in Hooch’s living room when he played the tune.
It was pretty surreal but it was such a nice feeling that you can naturally grow distant from people you were so close with in your youth but still hold such fond memories of them. I couldn’t resist and sent him a very long winded text about that day with a live video of the tune included haha.
Is there a song whose lyrics resonate with you and why so?
Beach Life In Death by Car Seat Headrest has hit me harder than any song ever has. It’s a 12 minute fast paced joy ride of a song with a very, very extensive lyric sheet that delves into subjects such as dealing with mental health issues at a young age and trying to discover who you really are as a person moving into adulthood.
The band/musician that you grew up listening to?
There’s a lot to mention here but i’m going to say The Strokes and Manic Street Preachers. I’ve been listening to The Manics for as long as I can remember and used to have about 7 of their albums on repeat from the ages of 10 to about 14. My brother introduced me to The Strokes in 2001 when Is This It came out. I would have only been 8 years old but since then The Strokes have always ranked number 1 for me.
What song do you wish that you had written and why?
Again, there’s loads I could pick but I’m gonna settle with Human Sadness by Julian Casablancas and The Voidz. Kind of like Beach Life In Death which I mentioned above, it’s also a 12 minute thrill ride of a tune but it’s definitely a lot more complex musically and lyrically. It really goes deep into channeling inner emotions and expressing them through music. I also read an interview before where I’m sure Casablancas said it was very emotionally taxing writing and recording it.
What song transports you back in time and why?
No song in particular but Jamie T wins this one hands down. Anytime I hear his first two records I feel like i’m just back to being my 16 year old self, skipping school and 100% carefree with my school pals. Them two records are almost like an escape route when I put them on.
Which song makes you sad when you hear it?
This one I actually can’t answer. I’m not a fan of being sad, as i’m sure a lot of other people aren’t either so if music was starting to make me sad I just wouldn’t listen to it.
Which song makes you happy when you hear it?
This always changed but at the minute it’s gotta be You Only Live Once or Hard To Explain by The Strokes.
What was the first gig you went to?
When I was about 11ish by eldest brother took me to a free festival in Coventry. Headline band on the first night were The Human League. The second day I saw The Enemy and Super Furry Animals. A decent trio of first bands to see if you ask me.
What was the first song that you ever performed?
Primary school talent show, 12 years old, borrowed a leather jacket off my brother, electric guitar plugged in and turned up full. Stood in front of a room of teachers and parents and blasted through I Bet You Look On The Dancefloor by Arctic Monkeys. I hate to admit but there is DVD evidence of that floating around somewhere.
What was the first album/single that you bought?
Everything Must Go by Manic Street Preachers closely followed by Kiss This by Sex Pistols and the 12:51 single by The Strokes.
Is there a song that you always listen to whilst travelling in the car or on the bus/train ?
No particular song at the minute but currently i open Spotify, go onto The Strokes page and hit shuffle all. They’ve so much good stuff in my opinion that you just can’t go wrong by doing that haha
Is there a particular song/band/singer that made you want to be a musician?
I don’t know if the pattern in my answers has become apparent but it’s got to be Julian Casablancas. 5 Strokes albums, a solo album, 2 Voidz albums, a song with Daft Punk, loads of other guest appearances and somehow he still manages to re-invent himself and be super creative in taking leaps forward. To me, he’ll always be an interesting musician to follow and his re-inventions of himself always inspires me to keep being as creative as I can possibly be.
Future West – Soundtrack playlist on Spotify
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