By Danielle Gibson
October 29, 2013
Eight years, four albums (including one in the UK top ten) later and Deaf Havana are as strong as ever. Muso’s Guide recently caught up with guitarist and singer James Veck-Gilodi to ask questions about the band’s new album, their 2013 tour and what we can expect from them in 2014.DG) Firstly congratulations on the top ten hit with Old Souls.
JV-G) Oh thanks very much.
DG) What was the process for writing the new record?
JV-G) It’s pretty boring really. It’s me, my brother, we wrote the whole thing. It was just me and him in my house and we wrote the whole thing on the acoustic guitar, made some digitals on my iPad and took it to everyone else and they did what they wanted on it and I guess that’s how it turned into an album.
DG) Old Souls was the most anticipated album for you guys. It’s a departure from first album Meet Me Halfway At Least. How do think this differs from your other releases?
JV-G) I think that it’s somewhat more mature than our other stuff and a bit of a representation of what we wanted to sound like. We were heavier before and we had to make a bit of a transition but this was always the music I wanted to create. It’s a better representation of where we want to be and it’s more mature.
DG) What has been the biggest challenge so far with this album?
JV-G) Getting our heads around the change and hoping that people would enjoy it. When we wrote it I thought all our fans would hate it because it’s different. It’s not been that laborious, it was quite a natural song writing process. The recording wasn’t easy but relaxed and the reception from our fans has been amazing. So it’s better than I hoped for really.
DG) Was there a specific concept behind Old Souls?
JV-G) Not really, just the same things as always. The only difference really is I’ve written about other people as opposed to me. I’m more comfortable now and I know how to do it.
DG) You’ve been with BMG Records for 2 years now, have you noticed any changes in the way you guys work since signing with them?
JV-G) We’re a bit more relaxed now. They give us a lot of freedom so we’re more relaxed and less on edge. We’re more together than we ever have been really.
DG) You’ve supported a number of bands from a huge range of styles and genres, such as The Cure, Bruce Springsteen, Muse & Enter Shikari. Who else is there on your bucket list to perform with?
JV-G) I’d love to support the Foo Fighters. That’d be good. I dunno really, there’s so many people. Most of them are dead, there’s Nirvana but we obviously can’t do that. The Smiths but they’re not a band anymore …
DG) What was your favourite festival to play this year?
JV-G) Oh that would be Reading, it was ridiculous.
DG) Do you prefer gigs to festivals?
JV-G) I think I prefer festivals. I do like our own gigs obviously but festivals are more relaxed and you can have a laugh. But headline shows you have to be a bit more professional and play what they [the fans] want.
DG) On the tour this month what city are you looking forward to playing the most?
JV-G) London will be good. It’ll be nice to go back to Scotland, we haven’t been to Edinburgh in ages so that’ll be nice. But London is always a ridiculously good show for us so I’d say there.
DG) Who are you currently listening to?
JV-G) Yeah, the new Placebo record, Kings Of Leon album, London Grammar, those are cool bands at the moment. The 1975, they’re pretty much the best band in the UK at the moment.
DG) What can we expect from Deaf Havana in 2014?
JV-G) There will be another headline tour about mid-year but we’re hoping to hit more countries like America and Australia. I dunno, I’m like the most disorganised person in the world I dunno what I’m doing.
DG) How would you best describe the band to those who have never heard you?
JV-G) Honest rock music but we’re telling a story. Folk influenced rock music.
DG) Is there anything you would like to say to the Muso’s readers?
JV-G) Thanks for buying the album if you bought it, downloaded it or whatever you did. Thanks from all of us and hopefully you like what we do.