Interview: You Me At Six
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It's hard to believe that it's nearly been ten years since You Me At Six made their debut. A decade of rollicking riffs, emotionally charged lyricism and punching choruses. The Surrey quintet kicked their way into the hearts of many, with roughened up tracks to soundtrack our equally turbulent teenage years. The secret? Frontman Josh Franceschi wishes he knew. “We'd bottle it up and we'd give it to other bands,” he says, a sense of bafflement and disbelief in his voice, as a guy in his mid-twenties still making music with his teenage mates. “I'm sure that there's a lot of other bands who would love to have a ten-year career and be lucky enough to have the fan base that we've always had; that grows with us and also trusts us to try new things and have supported us. Not many bands are as fortunate as we are… there's been so many bands that I've seen come and go that have been great friends of ours - who could've and should've and made a lifetime out of it and been successful.” Describing their run as an “anomaly”, Josh notes the power of You Me At Six. He never expected that not only would fans be falling over themselves for the new records, but still poring over the old. The classics; thunderous ‘Underdog’, barbed ‘Take Off Your Colours’ and the taunting ‘Loverboy’ are still beloved – “It's just bizarre, well not bizarre, but strange to us still that we are who we are and we're still going.” Last year, the lads locked themselves away to work on latest record, Night People. “I think just giving ourselves time to be who we wanted to be and write the songs that we wanted to write ultimately just gave us the freedom to try new things,” he reminisces. The album feels bigger, swelling with passion of the dedicated musicians. It acts as a statement of intent; that this is a band who know what they’re good at, but want to push that to the limits. ‘Brand New’ feels anthemic with a rousing vocal, ‘Make Your Move’ bites with thrashing instrumentals, whilst the title track moves like a slick predator. “When you don't have the distractions of the internet or other bands, you can really figure out who you are and what you want to create. With we worked really hard to challenge ourselves.” It's a step in a new direction; sharper and even more venomous. From slow burning to stadium filling, the album is versatile but truly knows itself. It’s unafraid to expose emotions, and uncage inner thoughts. Ballsy without being cocky. You Me At Six have led generations; they’ve been the staple musicians in many lives. “Whether it be the coolest thing in the world or not, we pride ourselves on just trying to be nice guys and be the way that our families raised us,” says Josh, exploring how the band have always focussed on longevity – to be there for the fans. “In the position of You Me At Six, collectively and individually we try and treat the band as if it were our favourite band because we know that there are people where You Me At Six has been at a point in their life, or are now.” Acknowledging that there’s a YMAS staple that works, the band have a thrive to evolve and strengthen even after all of these years. With reflection in his voice he says, “Maybe that's why we still appeal, because we're meeting and reaching people at different times in their lives but we're not just trying to regurgitate the same old shit all the time.
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