The dreamy quartet of Alex, Paddy, Dan and Cain are making huge strides as one of the leading lights of the Jacaranda Records roster.
If you had to describe your style in a sentence, what would you say?
Alex: Sad and horny.
Have you always wanted to make music?
Alex: No, I think I wanted to be an architect when I was a kid. Or something to do with space. A space architect.
Dan: I used to sit and watch my dad’s Kiss DVDs and it all went from there.
Can you pinpoint a live gig or a piece of music that initially inspired you?
Alex: I saw Tame Impala a few years ago. I can’t remember what song it was and it has this mad, five-minute breakdown live and I just remember closing my eyes and thinking, ‘This is fucking beautiful…’
Cain: Playing Guitar Hero 2 when I was a kid thinking I was the fucking shit. I used to play the same song over and over again – John The Fisherman by Primus.
Do you have a favourite song or piece of music to perform? What does it say about you?
Paddy: Yeh, I got given this absolutely unbelievable guitar. It’s a 12-string Rickenbacker and we played My Birthday, which was brand new at the time and it was beyond perfect how it sounded. A real dream to play.
What do you think is the overriding influence on your songwriting: other art, emotions, current affairs – or a mixture of all of these?
Alex: Emotions, definitely. To make ethereal, vulnerable music on, like, a large scale. There’s nothing better than listening to a song or seeing it live and you can feel it through your whole body. For us to make that for other people, I think the songwriting process generally goes through a level of like, do we feel this inside us and if not then it gets thrown away. It makes it more honest and genuine I think… music is meant to invoke emotion and if you can’t do that for yourself then what’s the point?
Do you have a favourite venue you’ve performed in? If so, what makes it special?
Alex: We’re playing a venue this month in Manchester that’s like Bido Lito! – pink all over. The stage, floor, ceiling, everything. That kind of millennial pink. Suppose everyone uses it nowadays, it’s all just a big fad.
Why is music important to you?
Siri: OK, I found some results on the web for ‘Why is music important to you?’.
Google Assistant: Music is important because it helps us in many ways; also, it’s funny to listen.
Paddy: Music is an art form. We are emotional beings and every child requires an artistic outlet.
Cain: Ear food.
Alex: I think the Google Assistant gave a more profound answer than I could give.
Reflections is out now. Shards play Kendal Calling in July.