White Room are a difficult one to describe as “New Noise” as they’ve been causing a lot of buzz for quite some time now. Based in Brighton, the psych-rock quintet have been making music together in their current line-up for about a year and a half, dropping their debut album Eight last year to universal acclaim.
Now set to conquer 2018, we caught up with Jake and Tristan to find out all we need to know.
Give us a brief overview of each member of the band.
Hen: Grumpy Pawn broker with every watch you’ll never need.
Josie: Never know where’s she’s gone.
Jacob: Eats, sleeps and shits god awful puns. The worse, the better.
Tristan: Questions. Too many questions.
Jake: Loves his cat more than his band
How did you all meet?
Jake: We all met at various colleges and schools. Except T and Hen, they’ve been cousins since they were born.
What does a day in the life of White Room look like?
Jake: We all wake up together at the crack of dawn in a large padded room, all dressed in straight jackets.
Tristan: Usually takes us the remainder of the day trying to get out of the jackets, but if we succeed early enough we’ll spend the rest of the day cooking up some tasty treats and serenading each other.
Brighton is a breeding ground for new music – what makes it so good?
Tristan: Gotta be the fresh salty air.
Jake: I reckon Brighton has the perfect balance on big city life mixed with a seaside retreat so really it’s a perfect environment to source inspiration.
Tristan: There’s also always a load of great gigs on, both local and out of town groups coming through.
Jake: Yeah, I think anywhere with a strong music and arts scene you’ll find creation will thrive.
How would you describe your sound?
Tristan: With words! No, I dunno, I always find this a hard one because I don’t really know myself.
Jake: We always thrive to the progress and develop our sound so it’s hard sometimes to put it into a specific box. But I guess I’d say experimental rock with a healthy helping of synth pop and dance groove.
What inspires your songwriting?
Jake: Lyrically, Eight was inspired a lot by escapism and positivity. I like to write in character form and almost become someone else, so often ideas might spring from something I’ve seen or heard that i then attempt to empathise with.
Tristan: For me, it’s what mood I’m in. On a Monday I might be feeling some funky business but Tuesday I might be stroking my darker side. Nick Cave has been a recent idol of mine.
“I always want to play a gig, and if I don’t, I get some serious withdrawal symptoms.”
In a time when streaming has become huge, how important is the live aspect of your music?
Jake: Crazy important. And it always will be. There’s not many feelings like getting up and playing to a packed room, or even just a few people. You feed off it and, for me at least, it’s one of the main parts of music that makes me want to keep working at it.
Tristan: Even if we were a band before streaming was around, the live aspect would still be as important as it is now. I always want to play a gig, and if I don’t, I get some serious withdrawal symptoms.
Likewise, how much importance do you place on things like radio and online support?
Tristan: Well now blogs and online magazines are one of the best ways to get your name out there and gather support. It’s all about casting the net as wide as possible and hoping you pick up some ears along the way and really online is one of the best ways to do it.
Jake: Online playlists on Spotify or whatever are key too. When you can get it, radio has and always will be one of the vital distributors of music.
Favourite venue to perform and dream venue?
Jake: Moth Club for me was probably my favourite London venue to date. I’d love to go back there to play a show, or even just to watch. Such a brilliant atmosphere and decor there. I think my dream venue would have to be Royal Albert Hall for UK and maybe Radio City in New York.
Tristan: Moth Club too. And Royal Albert Hall. Great minds, eh?
What made you choose to sign with Deltasonic Records?
Jake: Deltasonic just felt like the right home for us, you know? Ann and Martin and the rest of the team all believe in what we do and where we want to take our sound so when we met for the first time it was just an obvious choice.
Tristan: We’ve developed a really strong working relationship with them. Brilliant roster too.
What’s planned for the rest of 2018?
Jake: We’ve got some festivals coming up in April and May, including Portsmouth Psych Fest, which by the way anyone and everyone should get down to if they want to see one of the best line ups of the summer. Also Sound City, Live At Leeds, SFTOC too, amongst others.
Tristan: We’ll also be getting our heads down for a while working on a load more new material.
What’s been the best moment of White Room so far?
Tristan: Reading 2016, Festival Republic stage. I practically grew up at that festival.
Jake: I think because they’re still fresh in my mind the last two shows at Patterns and Moth Club were really special. Such a great turn out and so many new faces. Of course holding our own vinyl for the first time will never be a moment I’ll forget.
And just out of interest – If you were to add a sixth member to the band, who would it be and why? Dead or alive…
Jake: Ruth Underwood, from Frank Zappa and The Mothers Of Invention. She must be in her late 60s now but imagine getting her and her Marimba skills involved, now that’s a flavour I’d love to throw in the mix.
Tristan: John Cleese. Comedy warm up and he’d be great in a van.