London bunch Anteros make glitzy indie-pop that on the surface dazzles with catchy hooks and shimmery melodies, but addresses the stress and heartbreaks of being young underneath. Huge shows with Two Door Cinema Club have put them through their paces this year, and a busy end to 2017 lies ahead, with their own headline tour already confirmed. At their last Norwich visit, I nabbed the foursome for a chat about festivals, tour antics, and the ever present pressures of being in a band.
HOW DID THE BAND GET TOGETHER?
LH: Josh and I first wrote together three years ago and decided this needed to be a band project. We met Harry through our friend Ben from Two Door Cinema Club. Our old bassist Charles left to do session stuff, but we’d known Jackson for about a year, so it made sense for him to join.
YOU KICKED 2017 OFF ON A HUGE TOUR WITH TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB. WHAT WAS THAT EXPERIENCE LIKE?
LH: We had the best time! It was very intense but very fun. It was great playing to crowds that big as well. And Sundara Karma are great too. My favourite memory was when we were all together in this tiny dressing room,. Sundara were doing an interview and Ozzie [Oscar Pollock, frontman] just turns and introduces our Jackson as their drummer.
JC: It was funny ‘cuz they’re all from Reading and very well-spoken and then I just turn up like this [with a northern accent]. It was for a radio station and they got me to say “We’re Sundara Karma and you’re listening to…”
FOLLOWING YOU ONLINE, I’VE SEEN LOTS OF YOUR TOUR ANTICS. TELL US, WHERE DID THE GNOMES COME FROM?
LH: We had a couple of days off in Edinburgh on Josh’s birthday. We basically got drunk, and went to this ASDA near where we were staying. Our mate Zack decided he was going to buy these gnomes.
HB: We kept putting them in the trolley and the staff kept telling us to stop messing around unless we were going to buy them. I think Zack thought “I’m going to buy them just to make a point that I’m not an idiot”. When it came to buying them, the one person in the shop who did like us said “Take them, no one buys them anyway ‘cuz no one round here’s got a garden!”
LH: It was the biggest ASDA I’d ever been to in my whole life. I kept getting Twilight Zone vibes because it was so empty. I could feel the aisles getting bigger, and then I saw Zack walking towards me with this trolley full of gnomes… touring with us is all just like a travelling circus.
WASN’T THERE A MOOSE TOO?
JC: That was in our dressing room in Aberdeen. It was fucking huge.
LH: It was plastic, I might add, not a dead animal. It was sort of hidden behind a fridge with the antlers on either side. This was one of the first shows with White Lies, so I said to Harry, “Pick it up, I’ll ride into their dressing room on the moose”. And then we knocked on the door and no one was there! But then we were just stood there, me straddling this moose, banging on White Lies’ dressing room door, and the tour manager walked past looking at us like ‘what?’
YOU’VE PLAYED AT A TON OF FESTIVALS, INCLUDING GLASTONBURY LAST YEAR. WHAT WAS IT LIKE TO PERFORM THERE?
LH: As a kid I spent every summer at my Gran’s near Pilton, so I watched the sea of lights and the chaos but was too young to go. I remember lying in my bed when I was about twelve years old and thinking “I’m going to play this festival one day, and I’m not gonna go until I do”. Last year we got the call saying “You’re playing the Other Stage, get ready”. I was at some fashion dinner when I found out, got up in this stupid, frilly dress, ran to the toilets and rang the guys like “We’re playing Glastonbury!”
HB: The best thing that happened was when we pulled up behind the Other Stage and the woman who was in charge of parking was like “finally you’re here!” Obviously behind that stage you’ve got articulated lorries, double decker tour buses for everyone who’s playing… She went “Right, where’s your vehicle?” and I said “Transit van. Just there.” And she said “Well put it anywhere then!”
LH: One of my favourite festivals last year was Secret Garden Party. It’s quite a hippie festival, it’s very freeing. You could just walk out of your tent and see girls with glitter on their nipples. I’m already obsessed with glitter, put it on a naked girl and I’ll be like “Oh, hello! Sparkly!”
HB: Me and Laura went to a Beyoncé worship session. It was amazing, it was kind of an ironic comment on how worshipped certain celebrities are. There were ladies singing Beyoncé songs really slowly, it was like a mixture of all religions. We were sat there super hungover thinking “What the fuck is going on?”
IT MUST GET TRICKY SPENDING SO MUCH TIME TOGETHER, ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU’RE ON THE ROAD?
LH: Stress can get the best out of you when you’re on tour and everyone’s in their own little bubbles, but you have moments when you all get to bond. I think it’s important to keep that. We make sure we do hang out in a non-band way.
JR: It’s like being in a family; families argue, but it’s better to talk about stuff, otherwise you end up resenting people. You can’t be in a band and not have an argument from time to time, that wouldn’t be human, it’s impossible. Creative people in general love locking horns.
WHAT WAS IT LIKE MAKING ‘DRUNK’, YOUR LATEST EP?
LH: It was the first time we’ve gone into the studio and been able to record four tracks properly. Our first EP was a hodgepodge of demos, there were re-recorded parts, last minute vocals, there was never a thread to it. This time we got to go in and make something more complete. Nick Hodgson [Kaiser Chiefs] produced it. It was good that he comes from a band background because he gets us; he let everyone have their moment on it. Obviously we’re discussing the album now and thinking about going back to do it all again, but we’re really excited about this EP. It feels like such a milestone in terms of the chance we’ve been given to record something properly, and really do the songs justice.
Drunk EP is out now.
Photo Phoebe Fox