Liverpool alt-rockers Red Rum Club release their third single, ‘Friend of a Friend’ on 29 September 2017 on Rooftop Records. The new single brings to the fore a development in their sound which they have been perfecting all year; a much more pronounced Americana feel, not dissimilar to the likes of Calexico. Jane Davies caught up with them prior to their first headline national tour later this month.
Hello Red Rum Club, there’s six of you. Can you tell us who’s who and who plays what?
We have Francis on lead vocals, Michael and Tom on guitar and backing vocals, Simon on the bass, Neil on the drums and Joe on the trumpet!
How did you all get together?
We all played in various different bands for a while so we were all aware of each other. We decided to form a band from what we thought were the best musicians from each band. When we first got together in a room some of the lads had never met. Now we’re all buzzing chums.
That’s quite a name you got there and I take it it’s got nothing to do with the famous racehorse of the same name? Can you tell us where it came from?
We wanted to come up with a band name that went with the dark, cinematic side to our sound. We watched a load of old horror films looking for a key word or something to give us inspiration. When we watched ‘The Shining’ we liked the whole thing with ‘Red Rum’ being ‘murder’ spelled backwards. That’s how we landed on Red Rum Club.
Fran, you play guitar left handed, how do you all manage to avoid banging into one another on stage?
I think we all just know each other well enough after the years we’ve been playing together to know when someone is going to be moving around on the stage so we manage to weave our way around each other in that sense.
I understand you all attend boxing club together. Has anyone ever got seriously knocked out? Is boxing a good sport for bonding with your band mates?
Boxing is a good tension breaker. When we’re all arguing over what chord to play next and someone doesn’t get their own way they can rest easy knowing they get to punch everyone else in the ear later on in the week. Neil doesn’t come the gym. He’s part of an aqua aerobics team.
Judging from the videos on your Instagram, Mike appears to be the joker behind the camera. Has anyone ever caught him out? What’s the funniest thing that has happened when you have been out as a group?
He refuses to sleep on the van when we’re touring because the moment he falls asleep he’s losing an eyebrow.
A couple of years ago Tom had no money for a pint so we told him we would throw him a £10 each if he played our whole set with a cocktail sausage wedged up his left nostril. He did. And he had a great night.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Whenever we’re touring we have a democratic playlist, otherwise there’s murder. We like to listen to other hard-working bands and artists. Until Si puts Backstreet Boys on.
There has been a shift in your sound since beginning of the year. Can you describe that shift in sound for us?
I think we’ve definitely indulged a lot more in the western elements to our sound over this year. We’ve been recording and producing the tunes in a lot more of a contemporary way without losing the spaghetti western thing.
You have been very busy this year with festivals and gigs inside and outside the Liverpool area. What has been your most memorable one to date and why?
We’ve been up and down the country for most of the year. Got a big tour coming up in September and October. From Brighton to Glasgow. Obviously we’ve played some boss Liverpool shows as well. We played a sold out Liverpool show at The Zanzibar in January which was sweaty. We’re gunna do the same with our next Liverpool headline at O2 Academy on the 28th of October!
You’ve put a lot of new tunes down of late, are there any plans for an EP or album?
We have got about 5 albums worth of stuff. Only one of them albums would be any good like. We’ve enjoyed releasing singles though. Gives everyone a chance to listen to each song properly.
You are due out on tour soon, are you visiting some new places this time that you may not have played before?
We have a couple of cities on the tour that we have never visited as a band before! Glasgow being one of them. We’ve heard great things about the scene there so we can’t wait to see it for ourselves.
What’s next for Red Rum Club?
We have the single to be released digitally on 29th September so we’re really looking forward to seeing the response that gets. The tour will be running through October including the hometown show at O2 Academy. Then we’ve been doing lots of writing and working on the live set while we’ve been home. After the single and the tour we have some big announcements involving branching out further…
‘Friend of a Friend’ is out on 29 September. See Red Rum Club live:
1 – Hoxton Square Bar and Grill, London
2 – Green Door Store, Brighton
18 – Jimmy’s, Manchester
20 – Albert’s Shed, Shrewsbury
26 – Mother’s Ruin, Bristol
28 – O2 Academy 2, Liverpool
10 – The Garage, Glasgow