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Friday, 12 August 2011 08:30

Wired in #21: Ice Black Birds

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I know this isn't really the first band from Brighton I'm reporting about and definitely not the first British rock band. But all the rock and blues fans need to check them out: If you’re into dirty guitar riffs and a bluesy sound, Ice Black Birds is your band. They already have a bunch of highly acclaimed singles out there and are either working hard in the studio or touring the world for concerts, they certainly always living the rock’n roll lifestyle. For all the other fun things the guys are up to, check their blog and make sure to watch out for their very first record which is coming out soon!

E&M: Tell us a bit about your trip to NYC and Austin, Texas in March. Did you ever have a moment where you felt particularly European?

IBB: Yeah, it was very different in a really good way. The culture is great and the country is so vast you really feel like you’re on an adventure. There was one culture shock incident where we were in a very busy deli in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to get some food and Sam brought the impatient queue to a standstill when innocently spotting and asking for a "pain au chocolat" to which the clerk and whole queue went blank to the elusive choice, in their haste and confusion the clerk pulled out numerous pastry based confectionary for Sam to give a simple yes/no answer, after going through all the possibilities eventually sourced the request. To which Sam confirmed the choice and already feeling guilty and embarrassed for holding up twenty people,  the Clerk responded "Oh, you mean a ‘chocolate croissant’!'" and a woman in the queue piped, "He ALREADY pointed at that!" of course being corrected about the correct name is a bit of a shock! And a mistake made by their part towards a European food, yes, makes you feel particularly European.

E&M: Your tour around Europe this year was very successful. Do you still remember your very first concert together as a band?

IBB: Yeah it was in Brighton around Christmas time a couple of years back, it was great fun because all our friends came down and we were so rough and raw, but it was a very fun night. We also pocketed a profit of £70 which was excellent. This wasn't consistent though and we played a run of gigs for free in those early days. You are always climbing that ladder.

E&M: Did you ever play in a city in Europe where you thought, "Hey, I should move here!"

IBB: Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Vienna, Nuremberg, Prague, it happens a lot.

E&M: Your music's influenced by rock n roll and blues. Was there one particular group that motivated you to start your own band?

IBB: Lots of different groups really. We all listen to different genres, and our roots are buried in psychedelia, rock 'n' roll and blues like The Doors, Howlin' Wolf, Cream, The Beatles and the Rolling Stones, Velvet Underground era.

E&M:  Do you ever get ideas from other genres of music as well?

IBB: Yeah, absolutely. Much of our music influence comes from Talking Heads, Paul Simon, New Order, Yes, Devendra Banhart, Grizzly Bear, White Denim and Animal Collective.

E&M: Sam and George, you started the band whilst at university. What did you guys do before and how did your life change?

IBB: We were at school together, where music was a smaller component and now our lives have been absorbed by music really, we are fascinated by music and we love having the time to study it in our free time. Of course we travel more due to tours and there are more hangovers than before; we do like to join in on the fun.

E&M:  What's next on your agenda, recording wise?

IBB: We are currently recording our first album. Right now! We are sitting in the studio. 

E&M: Great, we’ll look out for that! You already have a bunch of music videos up. I like that you have alternative videos for 22:22. How did that come about?

IBB: It was a friend from art college who really liked the song and wanted to do a video for it and then we already had someone making one so we thought we might as well just have two!

E&M: And finally, what does Europe mean to Ice Black Birds?

IBB: Mainland Europe is beautiful and inspirational. Europe feels like an extension on home and we love it, it was the first time we really played to big crowds and the people are always so welcoming and responsive, we actually enjoy playing in Europe more that the UK at the moment!

For more on Ice Black Birds check out their website at  http://www.iceblackbirds.co.uk/wordpress/.

Last modified on Friday, 12 August 2011 08:50

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