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Introducing…The Drums

Line-up: Jonathan Pierce (The Singin’), Jacob Graham (The Stringin’), Adam Kessler (The Twangin’), Connor Hanwick (The Bangin’).

Origin: Brooklyn, Noo Yoik!

Vibe: Fine looking boys, whistling, American cool, slouching.

Influences: The Smiths, The Wake, The Legends, The Shangri-Las, The Tough Alliance, The Embassy, Joy Division.

Sounds like: Beach Boys, The Cure, Wham!

Background: The Drums have gained a phenomenal profile for a band who have only been together just over a year. Their blend of laid back beats and heart wrenching lyrics all set to the tone of being ‘ New York ’s Coolest Band’ (bet they’re thanking NME for that!) means that they’ve definitely succeeded in whetting appetites around the UK.

We recommend you don’t just run head first and listen to ‘Let’s Go Surfing’ but also take the time to settle down and hear ‘Down by the Water’ and the almost Joy Division-esque ‘Submarine’ to see how fully rounded (and unlike the surf-tastic Beach Boys) the band really are! Setting the bar high, the band currently feature on the NME tour bill. Their rise has been meteoric as well as deserved; The Drums playing two other gigs in the same night during the Manchester leg of the tour,  showing themselves to be as hard-working as they are perceived to be chilled.

Listen: Buy ‘Summertime’ by The Drums at zavvi.com

MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/thedrumsforever


Same Teens grabbed The Drums drummer Connor Hanwick for a quick chat about touring, the hype and The Strokes…

On the NME Tour…

“It’s going great; we just played our show earlier tonight. We open the show and tonight we’ve played three shows – The NME show, Sound Control and another one at Factory. The NME tour is great though because we hadn’t really heard much of the other bands until now but the guys in the other bands are amazing- everyone gets along really well. It’s like a rock’n’roll summer camp! Everybody just hangs out together…”

On being an American band…

“I feel at the moment with the UK and America, ones up and ones down. There are not a lot of bands in the UK which impress me whereas five years ago I thought all the bands in America were crap. And ten years ago there were bands like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and The Strokes who everyone wanted to sound like so it really fluctuates. I feel like there are some really good US bands like The Smith Westerns, a really good band called Girls. There’s basically just some really great music coming from there and it’s really great that we get to represent that on the NME tour.”

On the hype…

“We don’t really let that affect us. We only started about six or seven months ago. We just keep our heads down and don’t allow that to affect our creative process. It’s amazing that people come out to see us play though.”

On their songs, surfing and the Strokes…

We’re constantly writing. John the singer, Jacob and myself are constantly together- we’re often writing in the hotel and stuff. We all work together constantly. Our songs are all about being lonely and hopeless for the rest of your life. A lot of people just think we’re like a fun surf band and the fact is we don’t really listen to the Beach Boys. We never listened to beach music or surf music… none of us surf, we all think it’s kinda cool but none of us do. Our lyrics are melancholy but who wants to hear about another band complaining about their lives. There are too many bands at the moment who are sitting around crying wearing black leather pants or tight jeans with long hair but that’s just boring. There’s one band (The Strokes) that came out in 2001 who changed everything out in New York and for the next ten years everyone just tried to sound like them.

On the UK …

Britain has had some really original music which changed everything. But even bands like The Libertines don’t really do it for me… The Strokes were really genuine and did a lot for music but The Libertines just wanted to sound like them. People in the UK have all heard The Smiths and Joy Division, bands like Orange Juice and The Jesus and Mary Chain. We’re making pop music and for people in the US pop music is Lady Gaga – so we’re big in New York and big in LA but in the Middle States it’s a bit harder. Here everyone just loves that kind of music and so it’s a bit easier to play in way.

Watch ‘Let’s Go Surfing’ by The Drums here…

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Team Zavvi

Team Zavvi


A collection of thoughts, opinions and news from the staff at Zavvi.