Band Of The Week #0078 - Peakes

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This week’s Band Of The Week is Leeds alt-pop trio Peakes, who have released their new EP ‘Absent in Person’. We had a chat with them about the release. 



Where did the inspiration for the EP title 'Absent In Person' come from?
In both ‘Hole In The Floor’ and ‘Still Life’ we write about the feeling of isolation and detaching yourself from your surroundings. They both talk about the sensation where your body is fixed in one place but your mind feels like it’s floating above you. But more broadly the phrase Absent In Person seems to sum up the last year or so for us so well. It exemplifies our experience of our twenties where time seems to be passing us by so rapidly and yet our personal control over our futures feels like it’s diminishing.

You very openly discuss anxiety and depression in your lyrics and those kind of conversations feel very much in the zeitgeist at the moment, why do you think you find yourself drawn to exploring those topics in your music?
We’ve always wanted to portray realistic and tangible emotions in our music and we’ve never wanted to shy away from exploring the darker side of the human experience. With ‘Hole In The Floor’ and ‘Still Life’our intention was to capture a feeling in our music that others can relate to and everyone has experienced anxiety or sadness at some point. It is a part of being human. 

I read an interview with Robyn where she talked about making music to cry-dance to and 'Hole In The Floor' combines that sense of deep sadness with an uplifting pop sound, what made you decide to pursue that kind of juxtaposition between the lyrics and the instrumentation?
It definitely started out more melancholic and heavily reverby but as soon as Pete added the drumbeat underneath I think that really brought the lyrics to life. Also we had so much fun with synths on this track so using arpeggios really pushes the feel of it. There’s an eerie quality when the lyrics contrast so greatly with the instrumentation, and we think that really works. Also who doesn’t like a cry-dance?!

Who are you listening to at the moment?
We’re loving Karen O & Danger Mouse’s new album Lux Prima: it has qualities of Air’s Moon Safari and Karen O’s voice is just exceptional. Methyl Ethel’s album Triage has been on repeat for weeks and we recently went to see them at Heaven and they were incredible. We’ve also just discovered Patrice Rushen and can’t quite believe we’d never heard of her before - her album Posh is soooo good. 

Looking ahead, what have you got planned for after the EP is released?
We’ve been writing a lot recently and have been in and out of the studio making demos. Right now we’re very focussed on creating and having fun with new sounds and ideas. We’d love to get some new music out there but we have no immediate plans to release anything yet.  Gig wise we’ve got two shows coming up in early May. Expect a sparkly new set with songs from the EP and maybe even some unreleased stuff too…Catch us supporting Ora The Molecule at The Waiting Room on the 1stof May and at Door 77 on the 9thof May for The Alternative Escape.

Feature by Hattie Long