Exclusive Interview: Scottish Indie Pop Band, WHITE Announce Debut Album

Scottish new wave/indie poppers, WHITE have announced the details of their forthcoming debut album, One Night Stand Forever.

WHITE are a new band hailing from Glasgow and they play the kind of glittery, edgy, 80’s new wave-influenced indie pop that’ll make you want to dance till you drop. They’ve already impressed with singles like “Living Fiction” and their debut EP, Cuts That Don’t Bleed, which included hits like “Private Lives” and “Recreational TV.”

The band are led by charismatic frontman, Leo Condie (who has impeccable hair that even Suede’s Brett Anderson would be jealous of) who formerly recorded with The Low Miffs (which featured Malcolm Ross from Orange Juice) and several other members of WHITE were previously in a band called Kassidy. WHITE came together in 2014 and their lineup was completed with the addition of Kirstin Lynn on drums.

Their debut album will be released on April 21 via Gentlemen Recordings and it’s available to preorder now on CD or MP3 (but if you get the digital version through the label, you’ll get a download link to the album a week before it’s out).

The album is 12 tracks long and six of those tracks are ones that fans will already be familiar with. It features two songs from their Cuts That Don’t Bleed EP (“I Like You Better When You Needed Me” and “Private Lives”), and four previously released singles (“Living Fiction”, “Fight The Feeling”, “Blush”, and “Future Pleasures”). The band also just unveiled the album’s title track, “One Night Stand Forever”, along with a raw and dangerous accompanying music video.

One Night Stand Forever artwork and track listing:

C63gF4fWwAAj5z4.jpg-large

1. Living Fiction
2. Fight The Feeling
3. Future Pleasures
4. Blush
5. This Is Not A Love Song
6. Be The Unknown
7. I Liked You Better When You Needed Me
8. One Night Stand Forever
9. Sweat
10. How Can You Get Love So Wrong
11. Hit Hit Hit
12. Private Lives

 

WHITE are a five-piece band consisting of Leo Condie (lead vocals), Chris Potter (guitar), Ruaraidh Macfarlane (guitar), Lewis Andrew (bass), and Kirstin Lynn (drums). I was able to interview the band’s lead singer, Leo Condie, and we talked about their forthcoming debut album, overthrowing right-wing regimes, and the biggest disco ball in Europe.

Read my full interview with Leo below:

Can you describe the album in three words?

Leo: Blush. Sweat. Pleasure.

What was the writing and recording process like? Was it written and recorded over a long time period?

Leo: Since we started playing together we’ve been hammering out songs in our Glasgow studio, lathering them in synths, tweaking, polishing them. Then, we had to throw about 25 of them into a pit and let them fight it out. These 12 are the winners.

How did you decide which previously released tracks were going to be on the album?

Leo: We went with whatever worked as an album and we’re so proud of tracks like “Future Pleasures” and “Living Fiction” that we couldn’t miss the chance to build them into it.

The band seems to have a very clear, visual aesthetic. Who made the album artwork and what can you tell us about it?

Leo: I put it together using some paints, tinfoil, scribbles and a lampshade in my room made out of test tubes. An artist friend made it and one day I was lying on my back looking up, thinking, “that…is the album cover.” Of course I had to turn it pink first…

Your sound has elements of 80’s new wave, rock, pop, and funk (artists like David Bowie, Haircut One Hundred, Talking Heads, Orange Juice, etc.) What is it about that type of music that you love?

Leo: I think there’s adventure and experimentation in a lot of these bands, post-punk, new wave or whatever, where they are still writing pop music, but it can go anywhere. It’s so exhilarating to listen to, but free of the pomposity of heavy, technical, muso bands. Just idea after idea, clean, tight, and precise. Heroes by Bowie is an album I often played to psych myself up for going into a studio with an attitude of anything goes. Which is why our album has a second half that is all moody, industrial, eastern-European instrumentals (not really).

Your music is also a bit dark, sexy, and dirty, but it’s still fun, catchy, pop music. Was that a conscious contrast?

Leo: I’m not sure I even see it as a contrast. The best pop music has always had an edge to it. Listen to the raw emotion in early Phil Spector productions, or “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore” by the Walker Brothers – huge pop sound but there is a rawness, a darkness there. Or the original recording of “Heartbreak Hotel” by Elvis – the sort of production you’d think was a bit too weird if Angelo Badalamenti had recorded it for a David Lynch film.

What’s the band’s songwriting process? Do you all pitch in ideas for music and lyrics?

Leo: We all bring in ideas for music, sometimes 4 chords, sometimes full recordings, then together we tear it apart and see what’s left. I then lock myself in a room until the lyrics happen. I can’t explain that part of the process because even I don’t understand it.

Were there specific records that you guys were listening to while making the record?

Leo: Arcade Fire – Reflektor was on a lot when we started, aforementioned Heroes, lots of LCD Soundsystem, Caribou, Kanye…Producing it was a learning process for all of us, especially Lewis, who manned the desk and took production inspiration from so many different genres.

How have the live shows been so far? I know you guys played a big co-headline show with Baby Strange in Glasgow, you’ve played shows in Europe, you played at Reading Festival, and I saw recently you played a show at a museum.

Leo: So much fun! The co-headline was in front of 1,200 people. We hired a 12K projector  and made 40 minutes of videos to project over us, interact with, and kick the live show up another level. We turned on the biggest disco ball in Europe because of course we did.

Does it feel like your music is starting to connect with people? Have you started to notice certain songs that go down really well live?

Leo: “Living Fiction” was one of the first where we noticed people shouting the chorus back to us. I had to pinch myself. I hadn’t even realized when we were writing it what a perfect call-and-response that section was. It sent us back to the rehearsal room to add an extra chorus just for the gigs. “Future Pleasures” as well really gets any room moving – even rooms in Edinburgh.

What are some of your favorite tracks on the album and why?

Leo: I really love “This Is Not A Love Song”, it’s a big, defiant ballad and I was really delighted with how the lyrics came out. “Sweat” is another one that is a real head-turner. It was the last song we wrote for the album and as soon as we had it down, we knew it had to kick off something else. It’s a dark, sexy, electro bastard. It was going to fight us if we didn’t put it on the album.

Did you find it easy to get backing from record labels and management since you guys have been in bands before this?

Leo: Having a bit of knowledge about the music industry really helped us to get a much better plan together for launching WHITE than when we’d been in bands previously. We had learned from some of our mistakes and when it came to launching the band, we made sure we had everything in place at the start – songs we were proud of, a look, an image – so we would look like we had properly come out of nowhere, fully-formed, like a UFO landing outside your door.

Are you bothered by the rise of streaming? Would you prefer people that people bought your physical record or are you just happy for people to hear it?

Leo: That horse has definitely bolted. I love having a physical album, but I can’t pretend I didn’t grow up listening to thousands of MP3’s. We definitely aren’t in it for the money and anyone that is these days will really struggle if they’re not one of about five musicians in the world. But we are very happy that people want to hear our music and if they want to give us a boost by buying it, all the money goes straight into a van to drive us to the next gig.

Do you already have a lot of shows and festivals lined up for the summer?

Leo: We’re going to tour Europe! Just two weeks to start with, but we can’t wait. Netherlands, France, Belgium, Germany. Hopefully it’ll lead onto more. Then, back to the UK for festival dates, writing album number two, and then, more plans for shows.

What do you hope to achieve with your debut record and more generally, as a band?

Leo: WORLD DOMINATION. If the record could topple some right-wing regimes too, that would be great. But if we can’t get those, we’ll take the Nobel Prize for Literature…


For more on WHITE, you can check out their links below:

Album Preorder

Merch

Twitter

Facebook

iTunes

Instagram

Spotify 

SoundCloud

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