Oxjam is a charity music festival that takes place across the UK during the month of October, raising money for Oxfam, which is then used to combat global poverty.

This year, Impact have organised an Oxjam gig of our own, which will take place in Mooch, the University of Nottingham Student Union bar on Tuesday 22nd October, with a minimum £3 donation payable on the door. We have four great bands: the grungey Kagoule, the jaw-dropping Georgie Rose, the jazzy Cheshire and the Cat and the punky The Angry Seed.

See the Facebook event HERE.

By way of a preview, we had a chat with Cai (guitar and vocals) and Lucy (bass and vocals) from headliners, Kagoule.

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HOW DID YOU MEET?

CAI: We all met in school in Nottingham when we were around 15. We had mutual interests and gravitated together.

LUCY: I was best friends with Lawrence’s sister, and I met Cai just by chance.

CAI: We combined on the PE fields…and created a mega-human, that became Kagoule.

WERE YOU ALWAYS GOING TO FORM A BAND TOGETHER?

CAI: Lawrence and I had played drums and guitar for a few years, but then Lucy just got given a bass. Lawrence and I had played together briefly in a ‘band’, but not anything serious.

HOW DID YOU START AS KAGOULE?

CAI: We began as a cover band. You know, all the classics: Arctic Monkeys, Bombay Bicycle Club, The Maccabees. NO NO NO, I mean Sonic Youth, Fugazi…[laughs]

We combined on the PE fields…and created a mega-human, that became Kagoule.

EVERYBODY COMPARES YOU TO 90S BANDS, IS THIS A CONCSIOUS DECISION?

LUCY: The only reason we started listening to 90s music is after people started comparing us to those bands.

CAI: I wrote ‘Monarchy’ when I was fourteen without really listening to the bands that people have compared it to. I guess, I’d listened to stuff that was influenced by the 90s. For example, we’re still big Biffy Clyro fans; The Vertigo of Bliss is one of those albums we listen to every day.

LUCY: When you’ve heard it once, you have to it again…and again…and again.

CAI: Even, like Sonic Youth, I’d never really listened to them before people started saying that’s who we sounded like.

LUCY: I’ve been compared to Kim Gordon before, and that’s like the biggest compliment.

DO YOU AGREE THAT YOU SOUND LIKE SOME OF THESE BANDS?

LUCY: …some of them. We have some Smashing Pumpkins riffs and I can sort of hear the Nirvana comparisons. You know, the whole trashy thing.

CAI: I suppose it’s the song structure and the whole melodic-but-heavy feel, it means that they don’t have anywhere else to go but 90s music. It’s funny, because 90s bands aren’t even the bands that we listen to the most.

LUCY: Recently, I haven’t been listening to anything from the 90s; it’s been all 2006 techno. I’ve gone completely off the rails. It’ll be over soon and then I’ll go back to 90s music.

CAI: I’m really into krautrock right now too. Bands like Amon Duul II.

LUCY: When we were in London, I was in a record shop and I bought a Sparks single and a Caan LP. God knows what they thought of my music taste, because Sparks and Caan are so fucking different.

WE CAUGHT YOU TWICE IN LONDON OVER THE SUMMER. HOW DID YOU ENJOY PLAYING IN THE BIG SMOKE?

CAI: We’d played there before with Dog Is Dead and Drenge. This time, we stayed in Greenwich with a friend for ten days, met some people. It was really good, all the shows got better and better as it went along.

LUCY: I felt as if we got better as a band too. For the first time, it felt ‘proper’. It was just really tight.

WHICH HAVE BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE GIGS?

CAI: They’ve all been good for different reasons. In comparison to now, some of the early gigs were terrible. But you can’t really call any of those terrible, we’ve never had any that have been a real disaster.

LUCY: We’ve had amps blow up, but we’ve always managed to fix them.

CAI: That Rock City one last week – my guitar broke, my amp broke and two leads broke, all between soundcheck and playing. The first Rock City gig we ever played, supporting Dog Is Dead, was amazing. It was only my sixth or seventh ever gig on bass and we were playing Rock City! That was crazy.

ANY PLANS TO EXPAND TO MORE THAN A TRIO?

LUCY: No, certainly not. It’s difficult enough with two of them. There’s never been a time where we’ve thought ‘oh, this could do with a synth or another guitar’…

CAI: I couldn’t deal with another guitarist…unless he was a clone of me. Or some slave that only obeyed me!

I couldn’t deal with another guitarist

WOULD YOU SAY THAT NOTTINGHAM’S MUSIC SCENE IS IN A HEALTHY STATE?

CAI: Errrrr…yeah? There are some really great labels, like Gringo. Everyone helps each other out.

LUCY: It’s better than a lot of places…but…there are only a few venues. The Chameleon and Bodega are really good, but there isn’t enough underground stuff.

HOW ABOUT YOUR FAVOURITE NOTTINGHAM BANDS?

LUCY: Hang! Definitely Hang. Grey Hairs. Cantaloupe. Kappa Gamma!

ARE YOU SATISFIED WITH JAKE BUGG AND DOG IS DEAD FLYING THE FLAG FOR NOTTINGHAM MUSIC RIGHT NOW?

LUCY: Yeah, I think it’s good to have some bigger bands representing Nottingham and pointing out what’s going on.

CAI: But it’s not a fair representation. Nothing else here sounds like Dog Is Dead or Jake Bugg. They just haven’t made it big yet.

WHAT ARE THE PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?

CAI: You’ll hear (and see) a video for ‘Adjust The Way’ released next week. I’m not spoiling anything though, just teasing. Maybe even a free download, but no promises! Then there’ll be a single next year.

DO YOU HAVE PLANS FOR UNIVERSITY?

CAI: I kind of do, but we’re going to see what happens, how things go. There’s no timescale.

LUCY: Everything’s been moving so quickly.

HAVE YOU BEEN ON CAMPUS BEFORE?

LUCY: Yeah, we used to look around with the college sometimes, and then do some activities on campus. It’s modern, not grotty – very spacious and clean.

CAI: We haven’t been to Mooch before though. We’re looking forward to seeing it.

CHEERS FOR SPEAKING TO US, AND SEE YOU NEXT WEEK!

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Impact’s Oxjam will take place on Tuesday 22nd October in Mooch bar. It promises to be an exceptional night of local Nottingham music in great surroundings with a range of drink offers. With entry, you will be automatically entered into a raffle to win a pair of tickets for Sigur Ros’ show at the Capital FM Arena. Doors open at 19.30.

Check the event on Facebook HERE. Follow @impactmagazine and @ImpactMagMusic on Twitter for all the latest news.

Alex Neely

Follow Impact music on Facebook and Twitter

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