As the hard rockers prepare a new album, we catch up with singer Laurence for a chat
The new EP seems like a real leap forward. Is that how it feels?
For me this EP does feel like a leap forward. Since the last record we’ve got 2 new members in the band, Jonno Smyth on drums, and JD on guitar. The vibe and energy is better than it’s ever been, and the musicianship has certainly gone up quite a few notches. Put simply Voodoo Vegas are a much better band than we were when we recorded The Rise Of Jimmy Silver.
The EP: is it a real taste for what’s to come, or are you throwing us off?
This EP is definitely a taste of what’s to come, that was the plan for this EP, record these new tracks with the new band and put the band back out there. Hypnotise is a reintroduction of Voodoo Vegas, our new sound and a sample of what’s to come in the near future.
Why an EP? Some bands have spoken about the problems with albums these days, is that a long term issue do you think?
Like I’ve said Hypnotise is the reintroduction of Voodoo Vegas. I don’t think there are problems with albums, I am certainly looking forward to starting work on Voodoo Vegas album number two. That work could be starting sooner than you think.
You must – like me – miss the feel of going to the record shop and waiting for a record on the day it comes out? Are today’s youngsters too reliant on technology and missing out on the thrill?
I think we are all too reliant on technology, the last physical record I bought on the day it came out was ‘Music From Another Dimension’ by Aerosmith. That is only because I’m a huge Aerosmith fan.It’s the devil you know, it’s so easy to go to Youtube and put on a playlist or check out a song, and that is great for discovering new music, or listening to your favourite artists but that puts no value on music and that doesn’t make music special.
You are from Bournemouth. Not really seen as a hotbed of rock n roll. What’s the scene like down there and does your location pose any real problems?
To be honest the scene in Bournemouth isn’t great. We always hear that it’s not very rock n roll coming from Bournemouth, it’s not like we are writing songs about the beach, or the bingo halls. To me the only reason it matters where a band comes from is if the band only plays its home town. We play all over the UK and Europe so the only problem we’ve got coming from Bournemouth is every gig we play we have to travel north.
You must be thrilled to tour with Gilby Clarke. I’m guessing you guys were big fans of early GnR?
We can’t wait to hit the road with Gilby, we played a few shows with him back in 2012. I even joined him on stage singing ‘Its So Easy’ for one of the shows. The tour will be great for the band, a ready made audience for us to play our music to. I’m sure we will make some new fans along the way.,We are all big fans of Guns ‘n’ Roses, especially the earlier stuff.
On that point: the last time I saw you live, you took a – shall we say – hands on approach to getting people to join in, can we look forward to any of that? (For reference,it was in Tamworth, you marched off stage and insisted a bloke clapped along and stood there until he did)
Brother, the day I stop getting the crowd involved and working with the audience to build the energy in the room is the day I should stop doing this rock ‘n’ roll thing.
A harder one to answer maybe: there seems to be a real Hard Rock revival these days. Have you noticed that too? And if so what do you put it down to?
I think the answer to this question goes back to your question about record shops. Music is so easy to get hold of these days. I also think it’s easier for bands to get their music out to the fans. Although its easier for bands to get their music to their fans, they need to make sure they do it right. Their so much music out there, you have to make sure your ducks are in a row and make sure the content you put out is top quality. I’ve learnt that since our first record, and I’ll make sure all our content going out to our fans is top quality.
Where next for Voodoo Vegas? What’s your aims?
We have got a lot of plans coming very soon after the EP comes out. There is a lot of work going on behind the scenes in the Voodoo Vegas camp. All the plans will become clear very soon.One thing I would love to happen is for the band to get onto one of the big UK festivals in 2016. We’ve played all over Europe but have never had a shot to play one of the UK’s top festivals.
Finally, any bands out there you might want to give a shout out to, let us have them!
Back in June we played a festival in Holland called Kersenpop, a band I would love to give a shout out too is called the Rectum Raiders. Imagine Electric 6 turned up to 10 and you get the idea. They were thoroughly entertaining.
“Hypnotise” is out on October 12th