The UK and Irish trio discuss their UK headline tour and new single “Really Wanna Dance With You.”
Photography: Jimmy Fontaine
Every generation has their own boy-band. From Take That to One Direction, there has never been a moment where our screens haven’t been dominated by enough hair-gel and bleach peroxide locks to last a century.
So, who will be the next boyband to take over the airwaves? Enter New Rules, the UK and Irish pop trio who are set to become the next big thing. The band, which consists of Alec McGarry, Nathan Lambert and Ryan Meaney, are currently embarking on a UK headline tour – which includes a show at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire on November 19th.
“We have a lot more songs we’re excited to play, and for us there’s nothing better than playing new songs and seeing how they go down with the crowd,” says Lambert. “It’s usually how we determine what the record should sound like, or what should go out because ultimately, it’s down to the fans.”
With bold voices, upbeat hits, sly wit, and enough energy to bring any crowd to its feet, New Rules infuses pop with unbridled spirit and undeniable charm. Racking up millions of steams last year for their hit single “Pasta” and “Emily,” the trio have since gone on to sign with Elektra Records. Due to drop their new single “Cheers” on December 3, the boys are gearing up for a new era next year.
Recently releasing their single, “Really Wanna Dance With You,” the boys sit down with Wonderland to discuss their latest track, touring around the UK, and their love of Greggs bakeries.
Hey guys, how are you? How has this past year been for you all!
Alec: It’s been as crazy as everyone else’s I think – quite productive. We got signed which is pretty cool and we’ve been writing a lot of music, and TikTok has been crazy for us too. Ready to hit the road again! We just got off a UK tour supporting Picture This, and now ready to get out on our headline tour.
With everything that happened last year, was your creativity affected at all?
Ryan: We took a lot of positives out of it! It kind of forced us three to be alone in our house together and of we weren’t allowed to go to the studio or anything, so we started to learn how to record and produce – writing all our demos. We found that a lot the best stuff we were writing was when it was just the three of us, and that’s where ‘Really Wanna Dance With You’ came from. We went on a night out just the three of us and sat and wrote a song about it the next day.
How did you guys all meet, what sparked the interest?
Nathan: I guess I kind of started the band…I’ll take the credit. I saw some videos of Alec on Instagram doing covers and I messaged him and said, ‘where do you live – do you fancy meeting up and doing some writing some songs together.”
Alec: I wouldn’t usually respond to messages like that…
Nathan: On this occasion he did…At the same time I saw a video of Ryan on YouTube doing a cover of a Hozier song and I didn’t know he was from Dublin but messaged the same thing saying do you fancy meeting up and doing some writing.”
Ryan It was all very flirty.”
strong>Nathan: All very flirty. And then one weekend we all met up and wrote as many songs as we could…wrote a few things we loved, and it became obvious we should be a band.”
You guys all have different inspirations, how do you go about fusing your ideas and sound?
Alec: We all grew up listening to Indie and Rock bands like The 1975 and The Kooks. Whenever we’re writing songs, we pull inspiration from all those places, but keeping it in a world that’s still kind of pop – because we love pop music as much as we love all the cool music.
Nathan: Pop music is the most fun to write but the hardest, I think. Trying to think of something that might have mass appeal and we just love pop music.
And now you’ve built a huge fanbase, do you guys feel a pressure at all to be a certain way?
Ryan: we love chatting to the fans and engaging with them on socials all the time. And I feel like they really do know who we are. I think what they expect from us is to be honest with them, and fun and they know our dynamic and our personalities – so I don’t think its expectation, but they know that when they come to a New Rules show they’re going to have fun.
You’ve just dropped your new single “Really Wanna Dance With You”, take us through the production process?
Alec: Ryan touched on ‘Really Wanna Dance With You’, but that kind of started after a night out, which was full of inspiration if nothing else. The next day, we had a little home studio which we’d set up, it was very makeshift. The desk was made from parts of Nathan’s wardrobe, but we made it work.
Nathan: It was charming!
Alec: A lot of character…we got writing that song, and it came pretty quickly cos it was an honest story.
Ryan: We wrote the chorus the first night, just on the guitar. And then came back to it the next day, but we were really scared because we’d done that before where we start a song and say we’re going to finish it and then we come back to it and can’t remember what the song was meant to be about. But it worked that day. We actually recorded it through an iPhone – put it into logic. It started as pretty much a guitar demo, but then we got all the vocals and brought it Josh Murty.
Nathan: Yeah Josh Murty out in America. We wrote another song with Josh, and we really liked him. So, we sent him ‘Really Wanna Dance With You’ and just said do you fancy giving this a go, and he sent us back a little demo he did and it was perfect.
Ryan: He’s sick. His guitar playing is insane, so we knew he’d smash ‘Really Wanna Dance With You’ and that vibe.
What do you want people to take away from your sound?
Alec: Fun, energetic…a band. We just love writing pop music, we love making it feel like us. We always say whenever we’re in a room writing a song it doesn’t really feel like a New Rules song unless the three of us are in there, because we all have our own stuff to contribute.
Nathan I hope people can relate to our songs because our best songs come from real things that happen to us. Whether that’s a night out, relationship things we’re going through – it’s always real things we’re talking about. From us, we’re just trying to talk about what we go through, and I hope other people can find some kind of familiarity in that.
Ryan: And I think because of how much we love playing live, we always write with that in mind. One of the first things we say when we get in the room to start writing a song is how would this go down live, and we want to make it as fun and exciting as possible.
And you’re soon about to hit the road for your headline tour, what are you most excited about and what can fans expect?
Ryan: Greggs…most excited about Greggs. Greggs is a staple of tour.
Nathan: New, New Rules. Every time we do a tour, especially given the fact it’s been two years since we’ve been able to do a headline tour, we’re growing and learning who we are all the time – so every time you come to see a show its going to be a little bit different.”
Ryan: A few surprises in there, a few new songs.
Nathan: We have a lot more new songs we’re excited to play, and for us there’s nothing better than playing new songs and seeing how they go down with the crowd. It’s usually how we determine what the record should sound like, or what should go out, because ultimately, it’s down to the fans…what do they want to hear, what do they like.
Ryan: We saw quite a few of them on the Picture This tour and quite few of them came out to support us which was really nice. But it’s going to be the first time in two years seeing a lot of these fans who’ve been very patient, waiting to hear new music and spend time with us. So, I think that’s one of the things I’m most excited about.
Lastly, is there an album or project in the works, if so, what can we expect?
Alec: We’re going to be doing a lot more writing, so a lot more music. We’ve got bags of it.”
Nathan: we want to see new places, play some shows in places we haven’t before. Just excited to get out in front of as many new people as possible and show people are songs.”
Ryan: And probably some TikToks.. way too many TikToks.