The Statue Thieves Interview

The Statue Thieves

Formed in 2012, London-based The Statue Thieves latest EP “Where Did The Sun Go?” Is available on all digital platforms from the 25th of November 2021.

Its a soulful blend of Psychedelia, garage and Indie Rock with textures of blues, noise and soul.

The EP has been recorded with the band performing live during one weekend at the Otterhead Studios and is the band’s most personal release so far.

The bands previous releases have achieved international radio play, and were featured in press outlets like Classic Rock Magazine. The band has also toured in the UK and Europe, including Italy and Spain, and has been invited to the Phe Festival in Canary Islands.

The EP comprises of five new songs, which utilise the five elements of life as symbols to narrate a journey of self-discovery. Through a string of metaphors and free-stream-of-thought lyricism, lead singer Craig’s soft vocals guide the listener in an exploration of dreams and existential topics – questioning the purpose of life, and celebrating the beauty of our surroundings and the fire that burns within each of us.

The last album, Laniakea, which was recorded on tape and released on vinyl, has been selected for the The British Library Sound Archive as a part of the nation’s audio and cultural heritage.

We are are new fans of The Statue Thieves so we were intrigued to find out more about them in an exclusive interview below.

Introduce yourself and what instrument you play?

The band consists of four members from four different places in Europe: Craig Ingham from the UK (vocals, guitar), Iván Muela from Spain (guitar), Gennaro Oliviero from Italy (drums), Michał Domin from Poland (bass).

Photo © Julián Corro Martín

 

The Statue Thieves – What Does it mean or symbolise?

The name was originally meant to symbolise justice and injustices, and to play with that contrast in imagery but it has, over the years, taken many meanings and right now it is open to interpretation.

Who Are Your Biggest Influences?

Our musical tastes vary and each one of us listens to many different genres. It’s hard to pinpoint one main influence but it’s definitely worth mentioning 60’s psychedelic rock, grunge, soul and folk.

How Did You Meet and can you tell us how the band formed?

The band was formed in 2012 by Craig and two other members and was soon joined by Ivan who saw an ad on Gumtree. Since then drummers changed a couple of times until Gennaro joined in 2014 after, just like Ivan, seeing an ad online. Michal met Ivan in college, where they studied Music Technology, and started coming to most of London gigs to support the band. At some point in 2015 the original bass player left and the band existed as a trio for a few months. After several attempts Michal joined as a new bassist at the end of 2015.

Photo © Kaddy Jatta

 

What’s Your Songwriting Process and how do you nurture your own creativity?

In most cases it’s Craig who brings a new idea to the rehearsal. He is the type of person that constantly comes up with new stuff, and spends most of his spare time with a guitar. Sometimes it’s just a melody or a simple riff, but very often he’d present a complete chord progression and a fully structured song. Then, during the sessions, we work on our parts, explore different approaches, arrangements and structures – and try to figure it out together until everyone is happy. There were also a couple of situations where we would write a song collectively during a long jam session, which is one of our favourite things to do as a band. Shame that no one can see it!

Tell is about your latest EP “Where did the sun go”

The EP has been recorded with the band performing live at the Otterhead Studios. We approached it a bit like a reaction to our previous album Laniakea, on which we had worked for a couple of years, we had written over 30 songs for it and it was fairly conceptual. We wanted to then make an EP that was more about capturing the here and now of the band. We wanted to capture the energy that we were feeling and channel the ideas that were stimulating us at the time. So we wrote these five songs, developed them, went into the studio and recorded them all in one day.

The five tracks on the EP utilise the five elements of life as symbols to narrate a journey of self-discovery through a string of metaphors and free-stream-of-thought lyricism. Sonically, it swings around our different influences, from straight-up garage like Where There Is Light to the gentle soul touch of Rattle.

“Just Need To See His Face” from the E.P has been released as a single. Can you give us an insight into the meaning behind track?

The message behind the song is, again, quite open to interpretation but originally it was about looking for something you’re not able to see. Another single, “Rattle” talks about relationships and opportunities. Like most of our songs, the lyrics are a stream of thoughts that oscillate around certain topics.

What is your proudest accomplishment as a band?

Probably releasing the previous album, Laniakea, was our biggest accomplishment so far. It took time and patience to prepare and polish the songs until we were happy with it as an entity, not just a collection of songs. The album was recorded on tape, engineered by Luke Oldfield in Tilehouse Studios, and released on vinyl.

But in hindsight our proudest accomplishment probably is having had the privilege of having performed for so many people in so many different places. Seeing some people connecting with what we do and enjoying our music is one of the best feelings.

You have toured across the UK and parts of Europe and performed at a variety of festivals. Tell us about some of the places & venues?

We played a couple of different festivals, including some local ones (like The Hanwell Hootie Festival in London and Into the Void in Birmingham), and in 2019 we were invited to Phe festival in Puerto De La Cruz in Canary Islands. As a band, we enjoy adapting our music to different spaces – we’ve performed in some prestigious venues, many sweaty basements, coffee shops, public squares and even living rooms. Taking our songs to a big outdoor stage like Phe in such a dreamy setting (the stage was sandwiched between the ocean and a 3,7km tall volcano) was a real thrill and it’s one of our fondest memories.

Photo © Julián Corro Martín

 

Touring abroad is in general an amazing experience. We’ve had the chance to play several times in Spain, Italy and France for audiences between a dozen or so, up to a few hundred people, and the reception is always great – people always approach us after the gig, to share their impressions or just to chat about music and life. We’re all avid travellers and exploring that curiosity through music is a real privilege.

What can potential new fans of the band expect from a live performance?

Our performances tend to get quite lively and energetic, with a touch of unpredictability. Most of the songs we play end with an extra jam session, and there’s lot’s of of noise and effects pedals involved.

What’s next for the band and what can we look forward to?

After releasing two singles from the upcoming EP we’re looking forward to the EP launch at the Servant Jazz Quarters in Dalston on the 29th of November. This is going to be our first gig since February 2020 and the only show we will be playing this year. We can’t wait to share the new music with our audience and to play some older stuff as well. Also looking forward to seeing how 2022 unfolds, if we can go back to more regular playing, and of course hoping to play abroad again. Once we’re back on a more “regular” track it is very likely that we will start creating some new music.

Please include anything you feel we haven’t covered that you wish you to mention.

Our EP is coming out on 25th November, so do keep an eye out for that. We’re really excited to share it in full with you. But also, in the meantime, why not head to Bandcamp and listen to a random new album today? One thing we’ve learned over the years in the scene is that there is a mindblowing amount of great music being written every day. So head out there and explore some new sounds!

Photo © The Statue Thieves

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