"We just really want to get our name out there."
This interview originally appeared in music blog Denon Wing. For this and more music profiles, you can reach their site with a click here.
Words: Rosie Mulhern
Get Inuit are an exciting, new, slightly heavier take on guitar-pop, four-piece from the Sittingbourne/ Folkestone area of Kent. Currently on a UK headline tour, they have released two EPs and four singles and are already becoming the masters of catchy hooks and unmistakable riffs that will be left bouncing off the walls in your head for ages after listening to them.
It's difficult to 'label' these guys or categorise them too much as although they would seem to fall under the 'dirty-pop' genre, nothing compares to the unique and intriguing vocals of frontman Jamie Glass; however, if you're into the likes of Vampire Weekend then you're sure to like this band. I stuck around after my interview with these guys to catch their performance at The Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham and I was thoroughly impressed with their set. As each song begun, a feeling of unpredictability became apparent as each song was as refreshing as the other and no two songs could have been mistaken for eachother; the only thing you're sure of when watching these guys is that it's gonna be powerful hit after hit.
Although the band have only been together for two years, I was impressed with how refined and tight they sounded on stage. My favourite song played was without a doubt 'Barbiturates' as it entailed a sense of bravery with constant adrenaline fuelled build-ups throughout which lead to a powerful note from Jamie and the occasional hearty scream now and then. I would certainly recommend seeing this band live and I'm placing my bets now that they'll be big this year.
Taking time out for a few words, Get Inuit's vocalist Jamie and guitarist James Simpson. (Also in the band are James' brother Rob on drums, and Ollie Nunn on bass).
Jamie: I wasn't really good at anything else. I didn't want to go to college or uni and this was the only thing I was bothered about. And so, what feels like an eternity later, here we are now.
I saw on Twitter today that you've been announced as a support act for Vant, how do you guys feel about that?
Jamie: Brilliant! We've been gunning for some more support tours. The last one we did was with Broken Hands which was such a fun time. We just really want to get our name out there. We really love Vant at the moment and there's a big hype with them and we're all buzzing; like today - we were singing their songs in the van. It's fun to play with bands like them that are on the rise but it's even better to play with bands that you actually really enjoy and we've listened to Vant a lot, way before any talk of touring together came about so it's really cool. We've also been listening to Tigercub, we're playing one show with them but I really like them, too.
Is there anyone who you'd like to support or have as a support for your own shows?
Jamie: The only people who we really wanted to support us are Fish Tank so we asked them - and now they're supporting us on this tour. There's also a band called Skies who are also from Kent; we kind of keep it quite local as it's mainly Kent bands. However, I've seen that Pixies have been announced to play Brixton so I'm gunning for that. I bet every other guitar band in England is probably going to wanna do the same, but yeah.
The name - Get Inuit - that's quite an unusual one, where did that come from?
Jamie: Yeah, it is quite strange. Oliver came up with it randomly and it made us laugh - and I guess that's it really. We knew from the start that it was a bit of a stupid name - no offence Oliver - but if you type it into Google it's the first thing that comes up so that's good.
Your newest release 'My Oh My' follows your upbeat, fastn-paced style that you're known for. What was the process behind that?
Jamie: That's quite an odd one because it's actually the first ever Get Inuit song. Me and Ollie worked on that about two-and-a-half years ago but we never did anything with it. We just didn't feel like it suited our sound but then we thought, well why don't we make it fit our sound? So we re-recorded it, added a theremin and it fits perfectly now with us.
James: The idea of that song is that we were doing a 60s Beach Boys/The Beatles thing so we wanted to try and explore that a bit. I mean, we try but me and Rob don't quite have the voice like Jamie does.
Jamie: I have the most feminine, high-pitched voice so to try and harmonise with these two is pretty tough. They can do low ones but when I tell Rob that he has to go higher than me, you can just hear him sigh. It's quite a good one to play live, too as it gets the people going.
Do you have a favourite song to play live?
Jamie: We have a song called 'Barbiturates' which I wouldn't say was my favourite, but it's always the one that seems to be the most well-received; it always causes a reaction, whether it's good or bad. It's one that I get excited about because when we get to the end of it we know whether we've had a good show or not judging by the audience's reaction, because it's either really good or a bit...scared? It's quite a strange song but it'll most likely be on our album.
Obviously your setlist is changing all the time due to new releases, but is there anything that makes a song stand out in particular for you to want to include it on there?
Jamie: I think it'll often jump out at us in the rehearsal room because obviously we rehearse the songs a lot before playing them live and it becomes pretty clear. But sometimes it's hard to say 'that's gonna be brilliant' or 'we need to work on that a lot' like, I don't think there's ever a right or wrong answer with that one because a lot of the time. The ones we really struggle with are worth it at the end but some of them you instantly know, I think. Don't you think it's weird as well how bands are always the most excited about playing new songs? I mean, so am I, but the crowds never really seem to. It's almost like a weird juxtaposition by playing a brand new song because you know you'll enjoy it but they won't so it's like are you doing it for yourself or are you doing it for them?
Is there anything you'd like people to be able to take away with them after listening to your music?
Jamie: Hopefully, guitar music is still alive and we're not playing a retro genre. I think it's coming back though with bands like Vant and Spring King, definitely. But I think for people to realise that you don't have to be loving music from the 90s to love this kind of music. Obviously there's influences there, but that we're not old relics I guess - even though we might look like it, but not the lead singer cos he moisturises, of course!
You mentioned the album earlier, what can you tell me about that?
Jamie: It's still very early days for us but we were very fortunate enough to receive a grant from the PRS Foundation which funded us so we could record our album this year. We're taking things very slowly because we don't want to rush into things, which obviously is an important thing cos there's no point in releasing an album if no one's gonna hear it. After this tour we're going to have a couple of days practice to start getting some ideas together and then go into recording. It's very exciting, but I'm terrified. I've never done anything like this before in my life. I had to quit my job at Christmas so I could do this, so it's like I'm constantly questioning whether or not the songs are good enough - if I'm not talking then that's what I'm doing.
Other than the album, what do you have planned after this?
James: We're going to Texas
Jamie: Oh yeah! We're going to SXSW which we only found out about last week, which is...
James: Pretty exciting
Jamie: ... Terrifying!
James: There's a lot of great new bands doing it so it's gonna be fun cos we've never really been abroad before as a band.
Jamie: I've never been to America before - I've barely been outside of the UK, so I'm a bit nervous but James is gonna show me the ropes.
James: Always look the other way when crossing the road
Finally, where would be your dream place to play?
James: I'd love to do a tour of America, that'd be amazing
Jamie: I'd like to tour Japan because that seems huge. It's such a long way away though but I've always wanted to go.
Get Inuit play The Boileroom, Guildford tomorrow night (February 4) on the last date of their current tour.
See below for Get Inuit's dates with Vant in April.