Ireland may be a tiny country, but it’s got more than it’s share of talented musicians. Add to that list the young lads who are The Klares, from Dublin.
I first featured The Klares as a new music find in an October blog story, https://r8singer.wordpress.com/2015/10/08/young-irish-bands-crafting-killer-tunes/. Since then, they have come a long way.
Making up the group are Andy Burke (vocals/rhythm), Jordan Lawless (bass/backing vocals), Eoin O’Shea (lead guitar/backing vocals) and Cormac Sheridan (drums/backing vocals).
“Sparks Alone” is the first new tune for the boys in a while and really shows how they have grown musically from their two previous EPs, “Dirty Birds” and “Cookoo.” Great guitar work, quality drums and stand out vocals and harmonies. This is a group that works well together and proves what I already knew.
As the lads were busy with schoolwork, Jordan, Andy and Eoin graciously took time to answer questions I had emailed to them recently. (Cormac was unable to participate — I will get him too next time!)
The new song, “Sparks Alone” definitely shows you’ve matured, musically, and gone a step forward. Tell me more about it.
Jordan: Sometimes when you go into the studio with a song, you leave it with something completely different. I don’t think that was the case here – we wanted the song to sound exactly how it does live, and it does. It’s also a more commercial song than the music we have recorded in the past. I think it’s suited for radio play.
Andy: Yeah we’re starting to take more control in the studio and as a result we are getting the right sound we’ve all been looking for. “Sparks Alone” is a big step forward for us and you can clearly hear the difference between now and a few years ago.
How do you write songs, as a group or separately? Does it just flow when you get together?
Andy: Usually one of us will bring an idea to the band and we all just bounce ideas off each other.
What are your musical influences?
Eoin: Arctic Monkeys, The Stone Roses and Oasis.
Jordan: Pretty similar, I’d say Arctic Monkeys, Oasis and Catfish and The Bottlemen.
Andy: Yeah we all love the Arctic Monkeys and Oasis so I’d say they’d be the two biggest influences. Other bands like The Stone Roses and acts like Jake Bugg are big influences as well.
Do you get to play many live shows?
Jordan: Yeah, sometimes we go through phases of having tons of shows in a week and then an absence of gigs for a couple of month. We’re in our last year in school so we don’t get to play as much as we used to.
Eoin: Yeah, we usually take every opportunity we get, however we have important exams coming up in June so we’re taking it easy at the moment.
Andy: In the next year we’ll be doing way more, as we’re taking a year off between school and college.
Do you have summer festivals lined up?
Jordan: Yeah we do but unfortunately can’t mention any as we haven’t been announced yet by promoters.
What have you learned since making the last EP, “Cookoo”?
Andy: Since “Cookoo,” we’ve learned more about putting the sound that’s in our heads into the record. We have much more control in the studio now and don’t feel held back at all.
Eoin: I’ve learned to be a fussy as possible when recording a new song.
Jordan: We definitely went out of our way to get a specific sound out of “Sparks Alone.” I think that what we have taken from the first couple of EPs is a more confident approach to working to get certain sounds in the studio.
How many songs do you have ready now? Is another EP planned?
Eoin: Ideas floating here and there. Just release our single “Sparks Alone,” and another single will be released in July. Hopefully an album by summer 2017.
What are your audiences like? How is the response?
Andy: We usually get a good crowd that likes us which is always encouraging. We’ve got a small following now as well so the crowd singing the words back to us is great.
Eoin: I’d say rowdy, loud and good craic.
Jordan: Yeah, we take in a wild crowd at certain venues, where everyone goes mental for the drink and the music. The response can be great — people know and sing, every lyric. Then at other venues it’s quiet. I think that’s the same for every band at this level.
It’s been a while since your YouBloom experience … what did you takeaway from it that you’ve been able to use, and would/could you do it again?
Andy: YouBloom was cool. I’m not sure if we really learned anything from it, but we all had a blast in the past few years at the festival and hopefully will in the future.
Eoin: I learned that being in a band is expensive, but can take you anywhere. I would do it again providing we have the money.
Jordan: It’s always great to be able to turn around in an interview and say that the band went to LA aged 16. That’s almost certainly the most valuable part. But we really did have great fun and I would definitely do it again.
What do you want to be doing in five years? Where do you want to play?
Eoin: I want to be doing this, except in the world’s biggest venues/festivals.
Jordan: Touring and making more money than I can spend. Would love to play the Reading/Leeds festival.
Andy: I want to be headlining Electric Picnic and touring everywhere. I don’t believe that’s beyond the realm of possibility and in the next few years we should hopefully dominate band music in Ireland and the UK.
You can find The Klares on Twitter at @TheKlares , on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/The-Klares, on the web at http://www.theklares.com/, on Spotify at https://play.spotify.com/user/1155999249/playlist/2TQlKdCtd7YkYtgQHtd2cc, on Soundcloud at https://soundcloud.com/the-klares and on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/theklares.