Showcase: Creatures of Love
Published on August 26th, 2013 | Jonny Abrams
When Tony SoapCo recommends a band, we jolly well listen. True to form, we investigated the thumping, scorching electronics and enraptured melodies of Creatures of Love, and came away really quite taken with what we’d heard.
Inquisitive souls that we are, we fired some questions over to the group’s producer/guitarist Chris Willsher and topped them off with a couple from Tony SoapCo himself…
How would you describe your music, if pushed?
For me I find it really hard to describe our music ’cause the sound I go for ends up getting compared to Yazoo, which was not the intention at all! So lets say, a bit like Yazoo. Unintentionally Yazoo.
Where are you based, and what do you use to record with?
Based in Camden/Kentish Town, north London. All the music has been made in my flat just using Logic and an old dusty Yamaha sequencer, mostly singing into the microphone hole on the top of the screen of my Mac.
Are you signed to a label? If so, how did you come to their attention?
Nope, we would like to be signed, or least be within a company that would help us make an album. I really don’t want to make an album unless it is released by a label that cares for our kind of music otherwise it will just vanish a week after it’s made.
Is there a full album in the works? If so, what can you tell us about it? (Feel free to be as abstract as you like…)
I think ultimately there will be a collection of songs recorded over time that will form an album one day but it is not in the planning as of yet. I don’t believe there is any point in spending thousands on studio time and artwork to release it on Facebook or Bandcamp and have thirty people listen to it and pat you on the back. This is where a label would come in handy.
Where can we hear your music online?
If you hate visuals then go to our SoundCloud page.
Other than that I’d say just type our name into Youtube, we spent a lot on those videos so best to go there.
Which have been your most exciting gigs and/or overall moments so far?
There was a nice bit of momentum leading up to our tour with The Joy Formidable a couple of years back, lots of people getting involved, management, a sound tech. Enter Shikari released a remix we did and then we got to play some massive venues all over the UK. The glory days, you might say
Got any more coming up? (Gigs, that is…)
We’ve decided to take a break from playing shows for a couple of months while Bonita moves house, and focus on writing and rehearsing new material to play live. We mostly want to show everyone our new music video for “Sutra Sweat” which we worked on for months and focus on that for now.
Are there any obscure and/or up-and-coming acts that you’d like to recommend or give a shout-out to?
We, as a band, end up finding some bands at the very beginning of their career through playing shows at horrible little venues; this is where you discover the light and hope of the future, like Bird, a four-piece from Liverpool that seem to mix Kate Bush and Enya, so well.
And we played Wireless festival this year with a band called Curxes who are somewhere between the style of Zola Jesus and World War II, if you can imagine such a thing. Amazing bands.
Finally, if you were forced to spend the rest of your days in solitary confinement, but were allowed to bring the entire works of five different artists along to tide you over, whose would you choose?
Bat for Lashes brought Creatures of Love together so that would have to be number 1 for me; then Kate Bush, Deftones, At the Drive-In and Glassjaw to give me some energy to bust out of the cell. Just no Yazoo.
Now we hand over the ‘reins of questioning’ to Tony SoapCo…
You’re quite unique for a band playing smaller venues for going the extra mile and carting around an elaborate light show, and the effect is pretty awesome.
If you were headlining huge venues with unlimited budget, what sort of ideas would you like to realise in this area?
Since day one I wanted to have lighting as a big part of our set. Most little venues in London just provide a static stage light and if this was the case at say, Wembley Arena or Brixton Academy, you would notice the difference. The show would be lifeless & dull; lighting provides movement within the song & defines moments of heightened tempo and volume.
For quite some time I’ve wanted an LED screen to have at head height wrapped around us on stage to silhouette us completely and focus the audience’s attention on the visuals on the screen rather than our boring faces.
Your sound is unusual in that the music is really powerful and is both cacophonous and abrasive, yet Bonita’s vocals are really soulful and would give most mainstream RnB artists a run for their money.
This gives you a distinct edge over many bands because the tracks operate on more than one level and it’s incredibly effective.
With this in mind, basically, is this aspect something you’ve worked hard on to highlight or does it actually come naturally? And if so, which are your favourite bands and influences to have “made” you this way?
I appreciate that compliment, I can honestly say that is a complete accident. I produce the music in the way that comes naturally to me; I’m still only in my fourth year of making music using computers and my sound hasn’t changed at all in that time. Bonita’s vocal is just the one she has had since she was a kid.
The way we write the music is in the tradition of The Smiths, I make an instrumental track, I send it to her and she sings something over it, job done…next track.
Chris Willsher, thank you.