Interview: Blanket

We like to shake things up as much as we can, we’re never going to be one of those bands that make’s the same album over and over, our taste is always changing and so is the music we write.

Blanket have recently brought out their latest album Ceremonia on Church Road Records and it sees the band combine post rock and shoegaze in an utterly euphoric fashion. Gavin Brown caught up with Blanket drummer Lucas Fletcher to hear all about Ceremonia and what the reaction to it has been like so far as well as delving into what Blanket are up to for the rest of the year, including a look at their live shows.

E&D: Your new album Ceremonia is out now. What has the reception to it been like so far?                      

Lucas: Honestly, we were worried about how current fans would perceive this record, it’s obviously very different to Modern Escapism and we were worried the major shift in sound would drive current fans away. When we released the first couple of singles we soon realised that wouldn’t be the case, fans welcomed the new sound with open arms and we are so happy to see current and new fans enjoying this record. It’s different yes, but we like to shake things up as much as we can, we’re never going to be one of those bands that make’s the same album over and over, our taste is always changing and so is the music we write. 

E&D: The album tracks ‘Euphoria’ and ‘Sea Of Bliss’ are perfect examples of the joyous nature of the album. Did you feel this was an important trait for the album to have?

Lucas: Honestly, we wanted that summer festival vibe on these tracks, something you can drinks beers with your mates in the sun too, I think we nailed it pretty well! 

E&D: In the other side of the coin, tracks like ‘Kaleidoscope’ and ‘Loom’ are harder hitting, did you also find it important to have that different aspect to the sound of the record?

Lucas: To be honest with you, they felt heavy when jamming them in the room. So we wanted that to translate into record and that’s why these songs hit harder in a way. 

E&D: What were the biggest influences on the sound of Ceremonia

Lucas: A lot of influence came from late 90’s Brit pop but also mixed with a lot of stuff like Foo Fighters, specifically The Colour & The Shape and also bands such as Cave In, Superheaven and more. its all dependant on what we are listening to at the time and since all our music tastes vary so much it’s hard to pin point it in the final product, but you can definitely hear some if those influences coming through. 

E&D: Did you feel any pressure following up such a well received in Modern Escapism

Lucas: I don’t think we ever feel any pressure following up albums, at the end of the day we make what we like and if people don’t vibe with it then that’s alright, if people online care so much as to comment that a previous album was better, so what? I take it as a compliment, what’s the point in making the same record twice to please other people, we do this for ourselves and will forever be changing styles depending on what we are listening to at the time, at the end of the day we still made that record, and we’ll make many more. 

 

E&D: How does it feel to be part of such an eclectic roster at Church Road Records? 

Lucas: We love the guys at Church Road, Justine and Sammy are basically our mum and dad! They’ve helped us more than we could’ve ever imagined, it’s cool to be a part of a label who really care about their artists and the artists music, it’s a good feeling. Also to be given freedom in what we do, it’s made the release of Ceremonia as exacting as it could’ve been. 

E&D: How did the hometown album release show in Blackpool go and what were some of the highlights? 

Lucas: The hometown show was awesome, it was nice to see lots of friends and family there that never really get to see us play and for it to be such a special night too. It was just good vibes all round. 

E&D: How was the experience of playing Ceremonia in full?

Lucas: It was cool! Something we’ve not done before and a few of the songs off the record that we hadn’t played live up until that show! Nerve racking as you get so used to the same set and the same routine on a tour, it was also nice to relax especially being at home. 

E&D: Is that something you would do again in a live setting? 

Lucas: I’d say so! Although it’s a lot of planning on our part, it’s definitely worth it. 

E&D: Are you looking forward to your upcoming live shows and festivals in Camden, Middlesbrough and Torquay and unleashing the Ceromonia material at them? 

Lucas: I’d say so, to be frankly honest I’m not completely up to date with the diary haha. I am excited for Burn It Down festival I can tell you that, also to see our buddies in Split Chain again and have some cool hangs. 

E&D: You are also headlining your own tour in October, you must be excited about that? 

Lucas: Excited and nervous I’d say, we’ve not done many UK headlines so we don’t know how the reception will be, but if it’s anything like the reception from the record I’m sure we’ll be fine, we just love playing shows and I can assure we’ll be pulling out all the stops to make it the best show we can for people who buy tickets, because at the end of the day we owe it to them for continuing to support us on this mad journey. 

E&D: How did your recent show with Greg Puciato go? 

Lucas: It was cool, we had a great time and it was nice to see our buddy Greg again, he’s been very supportive of our band since the Better Lovers tour last October, I’m sure it won’t be the last time we see him. He doesn’t know it yet but the question for a feature on the next record is coming his way. 

E&D: You also played a few shows at the start of the year. How did they go and did you debut songs from Ceremonia there?

Lucas: We debuted a lot of Ceremonia on our tour with The Intesphere back in January, as soon as we have the songs show ready we like to start playing them live even if they haven’t been released, it helps us get a feel for how people are gonna react, the reception was cool, it definitely gave us hope for the release. 

E&D: Have you had any thoughts about potential new music yet? 

Lucas: Yep, new music begins the second an album is completed. We never really stop, we love doing this too much. Drums for album 4 are compete, I wouldn’t be surprised if we drop a single before the end of the year. 

E&D: What have been some of the most memorable Blanket live shows to date? 

Lucas: For me personally I’d say the tour with did with Better Lovers in October last year will stick with me forever, especially the last show in Leeds when Greg let me get up on stage with him to sing ‘30 Under 13’, touring with your idols is something you only dream of when you start doing this so that was really cool. I’d also say our recent EU tour with The Intesphere was pretty memorable, every show has us feeling blessed when we came off stage. 

E&D: What is the music scene like in Blackpool like currently and what bands would you recommend to check out? 

Lucas: The music scene in Blackpool has been dying for a while now, unless you count BGMedia. There’s not many venues about either really apart from The Waterloo Music bar and Bootleg social so it’s hard to create a scene when there’s nothing for it to thrive in. Although I think Boston Manor have definitely brought some attention to our little town, and since they’ve blown up I’ve seen a lot of new cool bands appear, including our good mates in Bloodmoon. 

E&D: What is your all time favourite post-rock album?

Lucas: The Earth is Not a Cold, Dead Place – Explosions in the Sky. 

E&D: What music are you currently listening to the most? 

Lucas: Haha good question, to be honest my music taste alone is a bit all over the place. At the moment I’m currently jamming Superheaven’s Ours Is Chrome, the new Knocked Loose tracks and Code Orange’s Forever. I can safely say the new Blanket stuff (which is close to being finished) is back on the heavy side. 

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