Interview with The Lilac Hour
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
Jake started off at school as a classical pianist before adolescence took over and he abandoned Beethoven for Green Day, when he began playing bass and eventually guitar. Jamie always had a passion for music but only a few botched attempts at piano exams to his name when he left school. It was at university where he found his true calling...Jake's cover band were looking for a bassist and in he stepped, learning the instrument in a couple of months. Matt's played drums since he was young, but they don't really count as music do they?
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
Listen to music! We're always keeping an ear on what's popular in the rock charts to see how we can improve our sound.
How long has your band been around?
About 3 weeks...The Lilac Hour is the reincarnation of our previous band, “Emergency”. Having welcomed drummer Matt into the band and taken huge strides in our production and songwriting, we decided a change was required. We are releasing an EP in 2022, for which we have written a lot of music which we believe represents a big step up on our currently available catalogue.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
Jamie and Jake live together in London, which is our main area for gigging, whilst Matt is finishing his course at Oxford Brookes university. However, it's Birmingham, where Jake is originally from, which has had the biggest impact on our sound. The Midlands have produced an eclectic mix of famous bands over the years and is certainly responsible in part for the variety in our sound, which mixes both pop and rock influences.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
We spent months arguing about what to call it. We oscillated between rhymes, double entendres and dramatic metaphors before settling on The Lilac Hour…which is totally random, made up and meaningless.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Our first gig as a band at 93 Feet East in Brick Lane! This was as the previous version of our band, "Emergency", but was the first time we'd ever played our own music live. Coming out of lockdown, our friends had had plenty of time to listen to what we had on Spotify and knew all the words. It was a surreal feeling.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
The Victoria in Dalston is a fantastic venue. The music area is very spacious but also intimate, hidden behind a bookcase like something out of a film, and they have a great selection of home brewed beer, which is obviously essential...Check out the pictures from our gig there in February: https://www.instagram.com/the_lilac_hour/
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
People who are critical of you doing something creative are only scared you'll succeed.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Our new track, "Call Me", which is out Friday 22nd July. This is the first track we've ever recorded and produced to a really high standard and it has made us genuinely excited about the future.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
"Your Crazy Mother" is a favourite amongst the die hard "Emergency" fans. It's catchy but most importantly has an interesting backstory which really winds up Jake's girlfriend, so naturally everyone loves it.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
Our singer, Jake, is the main songwriter. That said, when we get together and play the songs as a band, they never turn out as they were originally conceived. Jake has written slow, acoustic songs which have turned into heavy rock tracks, and vice versa. In this sense, the rest of the band make a huge impact on how the songs ultimately turn out.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
While we'd like to pretend the songs are deep and meaningful, they more often than not centre around Jake's grievances with other people. In this respect, Jake needs to get over himself.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
We obviously disagree on certain things, usually the structure and vibe of the songs, but we're pretty good at coming up with a solution that suits everyone. These disagreements are actually really important because everyone's vision is reflected in the music rather than just one person's.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
This year, we will release our debut EP. The first single, “Call Me”, is out Friday 22nd July. It’s a sort of soft rock ballad with a strong tune, but the guitar solo in the middle is the highlight. Pre save using the link! https://linktr.ee/thelilachour
We already have one other track recorded and ready to go and will be heading into the studio very soon to complete the others. This EP marks a significant departure from our previous works in terms of style and quality and we’re really looking forward to its release.