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Interview: Wild Front

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You may have heard Wild Front’s name echoed along the grapevine ever since Emily Eavis handpicked the four-piece to headline the BBC Introducing Stage at Glastonbury last year.

You may have already been lucky enough to catch one of their eclectic live shows, or you may sit in the camp yet to hear the dreamy blend of ambient pop that Wild Front are heralded for. Either way, you’re sure to be searching their name on Spotify, in eager anticipation of their debut album’s release, once you’ve read our interview with the band’s frontman Jack Williams.

Southampton’s Wild Front have been making music together under different guises for close to ten years and within the last two years have released an impressive run of singles and EPs under Wild Front to great acclaim. With standout single ‘Rico’ which the band humbly did not anticipate the love the atmospheric, slow and shimmery track would receive, reaching over a million streams, talk of a debut album is long overdue.

“I think we just ended up with a body of work that we wanted to be an album and thought this was the right time to go for it.”

The band are yet to drop the album’s lead single, ‘Simmer Down’, a glimmering summer anthem building on the passion of the singles that came before and providing an enticing slice of what is to be expected from the album.

“The chilled, summery and driving vibes heard on 'Simmer Down' are certainly a theme that will run throughout the album. We have a few different aspects to our sound, so the album will be a real mix of that. Expect a lot of chilled ambience, but also a lot of bouncy tunes! I won’t give too much away…”

Jack remains tight lipped, but we are assured that of the many different influences the band cite as inspiration, he doesn’t “think too many have snuck into the album”. For the record, we should perhaps be expecting the album to dip into the fruitful sounds of a band who listen to plenty of Gretchen Poulito, Kendrick and Tame Impala.

To date, the band have written, produced and mixed everything at their home studio to wondrous results, but have placed production responsibilities in the more than capable hands of Fred Cox who is known for his work with Kasabian, Janelle Monae and Rag N Bone Man and guaranteed to lift the album to even greater heights.

“He’s so easy to work with and such a nice guy! All of us are loving the process of taking songs we have written into the studio with Fred and taking it from there.”

With music so smoothly produced, it comes as little surprise that most often when a track is born, the music comes first. Though writing feels like something that comes naturally to the collective.

“We tend to all write the tracks together and then I’ll take them away and do the melodies and top lines.”

Though their writing takes more inspiration from the personal than 'the political', Jack’s personal favourite lyric the band have penned comes from track ‘In the Dirt’ which confidently combines both.

 “I was brought up in a fairly religious background, which I’ve always really battled with. There’s a line in our song ‘In the Dirt’, which is “I’d rather move the dirt than go to church ‘cause it’s not as simple as best or worst”. On a personal level, I really love that.”

Aside from tightening up the album, the band have a busy schedule over the coming months, including festival slots at the Great Escape, Neighbourhood and MadCool.

“I think we’re all a bit itchy to play some festivals right now. To be playing the main stage at The Isle of Wight on it’s 50th year as a festival will be something to remember forever!”

The band spent their bank holiday weekend navigating their way across the country; playing sets at the best metropolitan festivals the north has to offer: Live at Leeds, Hit the North and Sound City.

“We love those kinds of metropolitan festivals that are spread across loads of venues ‘cause you get a real feel for the cities. They’re great for smaller bands too, we stumbled across some real gems, there’s so much brilliant music out there.”

And their favourite of the three?

“Hit the North was amazing! We love playing in Newcastle so much and have been fortunate to play there a couple of times supporting James and also Fickle Friends, so it was good to go back.”

It has been smooth sailing for the band so far, their strangest touring experience being the time their whole sound system went down mid-gig. The future promises big things for Wild Front, who recommend we should all listen to Tom Misch’s new album and ‘Think Too Much Feel Too Little’ by Jaws as we patiently wait for their debut album to arrive in our eardrums

 Simmer Down’ will be released on Humble Angel Records on all streaming services on Friday 18th May.

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