Written by Mercedes Shackleton
21-year-old Josh Noble, vocals and guitarist for Larkins, gives us an insight into one of Manchester’s favourite indie bands. With a new single on the way, and great reviews of their previous work, Larkins are set to have a great year.
Q: You’ve got a very curious band name, how did you come up with it?
Josh: “It’s the poet Philip Larkin. We were in college together and the bassist and the guitarist were doing English, one day they were looking around the room and they saw a picture of him with his spectacles on. We got the idea from that, really.”
Q: Have any of you had a formal music education?
Josh: “Yeah, the drummer and the bass player are studying music at the moment, and the guitarist and I studied music at college.”
Q: Tell us about your newest single Wasted Years, what was the creative process for it?
Josh: “I’m not sure really, it was the idea that we didn’t want to be wasting our youths. We’ve met a lot of people that have said, oh I wish I’d done that and we didn’t want to be like that, we don’t want to waste our years.”
Q: What or who are your main influences at the moment?
Josh: “We listen to a lot of Fouls, a lot of Wolf Alice. We’ve also been listening to a lot of Fleetwood Mac and Led Zeppelin.”
Q: How were your gigs in London and Leeds? Will you be playing the same stuff in Manchester?
Josh: “London was amazing, Leeds was also the same, and one of the best gigs we’ve done for ages. And yeah, in Manchester we’re going to try to make it special, we’re excited and nervous.”
Q: Do you feel like your music style has changed since you formed the band?
Josh: “Yeah, definitely. If you’ve listened to Velvet you’ll be able to tell we sound slightly different. We were trying to be a 60’s rock and roll band, because we were listening to a lot of that at the time. But I think we found our sound with Wasted Years, it’s kind of indie pop but I’d like to think there’s something original about it, something we can’t really put our finger on.”
Q: How would you say you differentiate yourselves from other indie bands in Manchester?
Josh: “I think we’re very effects based, we don’t use any backing tracks, we do everything live. We make sure that if we can’t do it live we find a way of how to do it live. I think we come up with a lot of energy and we do shows rather than gigs, we don’t like the idea of playing a set of songs and then leaving.”
Q: What has the reception been to Don’t Leave The Lights On?
Josh: “It’s been okay, but I think it was probably too early to make an EPR. We weren’t experienced enough, but it still went really well. Hit and Run just hit 100.000 hits on Spotify. Also, I think Sapphire from the same album is really good, we normally use it to end our shows.”
Q: Can we expect a bigger project from you in 2017?
Josh: “We’ve definitively got another single coming out in the summer. We would also like to sit down and write an album but we’re searching for a label at the moment to take us to the next level. We’re hoping 2017 is going to be a big one because we’re going to do a lot of festivals.”
Q: if you were a cocktail, which one would you be and why?
Josh: “I think we would be an Old Fashioned, because that’s what we all drink.”
Q: What advice would you give for musicians who are trying to make it in the industry?
“We play with a lot of new bands, so we try and help them out as much as we can. I would definitely say gig as much as you can. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but there’s a football saying that goes, “A player can be fit and then they can be match fit”? It’s the same with music, you can be rehearsed and be gig ready, but when you’re on the stage everything can be very different.”
“Try to write as much as you can and try to refrain from covers unless you have to. Play original music, show people what you’re all about. Go to loads of gigs as well, make sure you introduce yourselves to as many bands as you can, you can never know what will come from it.”
It is clear to see that Josh and the rest of his band have a goal in sight and along with their growing catalogue of music and long line of gigs and tours, we think Larkins are set to become the hottest thing on this of the Pennines. Look out for new music from the Manchester band and also when they’ll be in a town near you!
In the meantime, check out the video for Velvet below.
Photo Credit: Priti Shikotra Photography