Recently signed to the ever brilliant One Little Indian, Bath-based five-piece Kill It Kid are, well, how do we put it, er, STONKING? Stonking is the word, yes. To utilise a standard music journo cliché, they are like a feverous Antony Hegarty gone on holiday to New Orleans. That’s actually pretty accurate.
And we were lucky enough to have them answer a series of questions for us. Here’s what happened…
Do you get excited if you hear your song on the radio/someone talking about you?
It really is a thrill to hear praise coming from someone you admire, to some extent it’s a relief to know the effort and hope you’ve put into a band and the songs is being appreciated and accepted! Also it is pretty strange, it’s a personal thing and hearing peoples first impressions. A lot of people say my voice sounds “whiskey-soaked ” for example. I hate whiskey. I’m not very good at eavesdropping but it seems a lot of people are glad we are doing something against the grain. Something separate from the indie bands that seem to have a monopoly over young music fans right now.
Who would be your dream person to work with?
There are so many. I guess Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, Jack White… pretty big dream!
What did you grow up listening to? Do you think it would’ve been different if you were growing up now, what with unlimited access to all sorts of music?
I mainly grew up to my ad’s stereo. That mean’t JJ Cale, Led Zeppelin, Peter Green, The Beatles. On the other hand my Mmum being a chorister and piano teacher meant that the rock ‘n’ roll was weighted with a healthy dollop of choral music and piano music played by students from 3pm to 6pm EVERY DAY.
I’m not sure it’d be that different growing up now; I still think kids will still take lead from their parents, friends and what looks good scratched in a pencil case. I do think I’d probably have listened to more music. These days (christ i’m only 20!) it’s all about sourcing out a new band that you’ve never heard before and discovering you love them – such a fantastic thing.
If you could transport yourself to any year, when would it be?
The 1920s in Georgia, Mississippi and Arkansas. Being able to play bottle neck with the guys who first tracked songs like ‘My Black Mamma’,’ High Water Everywhere’, ‘Shake Em’ On Down’ and ‘Poor Boy’ would be where I would want to be.
What records are you looking forward to this year?
Definitely Mumford and Sons, whatever they choose to release… thats about it! I should keep more up-to-date.
What made you sign to One Little Indian?
One Little Indian are a label unlike so many today, being one the biggest and longest running Indie labels in the country and signing music they are passionate about, regardless of its immediate implications on the bank account. We just felt as a label they could provide everything we wanted and needed, and they’re all lovely chaps which makes the artist/label relationship really productive, one big happy family [Ed-aaah].
Album-wise, what can we expect?
Well, we had about five months to put the album together. We were picked up by our label at such an early point that what people will hear on the record is literally what we had at the birth of the band. We had no opportunity to overthink it, it’s what the five of us were doing at that point in time. It’s quite liberating but also absolutely terrifying!
We wanted to pull a new sound out of the old country blues and jazz records from the 1920s to the ’40s, trying to build on this anthology of music but approaching it with an aim of making it our own. A lot of our songs, just like the blues or country ballads, focus on love and loss. However I wanted the protagonist to take an assertive, almost aggressive tone placing them in a position of power. It lifts the songs out of the typical ‘I’ve been hard done by, but I still love her’ mindset that dogs people coming out of relationships..and It sounds pretty scary.
How did you end up involved in the John Parish guinea pig experiment and what did you get out of it?
Well, each year our course gets in a guest producer to work with a band and run a sort of workshop with those going into production. We were lucky enough to be the band chosen by him to work with. It was a really valuable experience for us all; having literally only formed weeks before, it gave the band a chance to record together for the first time and work in a studio enviroment. One thing I left with after the session was a sore throat as you can tell from the recordings, 12 hour days singing the tracks over and over.
Do you think your influences are immediately obvious in your music?
I think to people who listen to a similar sort of music to us, yes. I mean we wanted to follow on from bands like The Black Keys, The Raconteurs, Tom Waits. If you haven’t heard those bands i guess it isn’t so obvious.