An interview with Louis London

The five-piece Sydney band, Louis London, have been hard at work crafting and moulding their sound whilst juggling university degrees, jobs, gigs and girlfriends. Imogen managed to grab a sneaky interview with lead singer (Ed Saloman) during a convenient, quick lunch break at uni.

These guys never fail to impress and have previously snagged attention from Triple J and FBI; perpetually gaining momentum in the industry. Since their emergence in 2010, many venues around Australia have been graced with their charming musical abilities. Their reputation has soared as they have supported a variety of acts, such as RÜFÜS, Hunting Grounds, Castlecomer and Bag Raiders. An awesome fusion of indie, neo-soul, alternative and rock has made them stand out from the crowd and a must-see live.

Since releasing singles, “This Night Time” and “We’re Not Alone” and two EPs, On Your Lips We Roared and most recently The Big Deep, the boys have strengthened more than just their bromance. Their sound has collectively progressed and matured into an inferno of unique musicality, displaying a certain tastefulness. Take a plunge into the secrets of Louis London by checking out our interview with frontman, Ed Saloman.

LOUISLONDONartfelicis

Band members: Ed Saloman, Nick Ingall, Karl Fernandes, Jack O’Donnell & Jack Kiddell.
Photo credit: Louis London.

IMOGEN: So, the first question is: how do you usually come up with songs? Do the lyrics or melodies come first?

ED: Um…it tends to come from an instrument first. So, I might play guitar, it might come from a piano line, it might come from a synth line. You know… anything like that. And then I’ll kinda just hum along to something until it kinda makes sense. And then, lyrics tend not to come, not ‘til quite late in the piece. Um, so yeah: harmony, kind of riff, melody, kinda lyrics later on.

IMOGEN: Do you guys rehearse regularly?

ED: We have had a few changes in the band. So, one of the guys left. And we’re kinda just taking a bit of time out at the moment to basically just write. And then, we’ll kind of be back later on this year and will be doing some stuff.

IMOGEN: I heard you guys went away for your last EP?

ED: No, yeah it was good we went to Jindabyne and wrote the last EP. Pretty much three quarters of it we wrote there and then just the last track we wrote just back in Sydney.

IMOGEN: Would you say everyone in Louis London has different roles? Is there a frontman?

ED: Ah…Well I think I’m kinda the frontman in that respect. But, everyone kinda has their little area that they deal with, for sure. I don’t know, I mean it’s hard…. obviously everyone plays different instruments and that’s kind of self-evident. But, musically it’s … everyone does kinda divide a little piece of the puzzle up and take it for themselves.

IMOGEN: What has been the best gig you’ve played so far?

ED: We played a very fun gig in Melbourne recently. That was at a Melbourne University festival down there, which was awesome. And there were some very devout fans which was cool.

IMOGEN: So, you’ve got a little Melbourne fan base going on?

ED: Yeah, it’s getting there. That was a really fun gig, they treated us very well and were very nice and just generally really friendly people.

IMOGEN: Your sound has probably changed and evolved a lot throughout the years, how would you describe what it currently sounds like?

ED: Um, ah God that’s a tricky one. It’s actually best… I’m not the best person to ask for that, just because I’m too close to it. But, I think that it’s… just sonically we’re using more instruments now, so simple stuff like that I can kind of tell you. You know, a bunch of different instruments. The writing process has evolved, so it’s a lot more collaborative than it used to be. Everyone puts in their two cents which is really good, and I think that has a change on the sound. But, to put a name on it is really hard.

IMOGEN: So, I’ve seen on Facebook that the lads are into running half marathons, is this a common thing for the boys?

ED: Yeah, we’ve definitely got our own lives outside of the band. I can tell you now that Jack who I ran with, who plays keys is actually leaving – he’s a pretty good runner and I’m a pretty terrible runner.

IMOGEN: Did you run the whole way?

ED: The whole damn way! Yeah, it was really hard.

IMOGEN: Did Jack keep you going?

ED: He actually did. He was very motivational

IMOGEN: Did you get medals?

ED: We did. You know what… I don’t know what I’ve done with my medal.

IMOGEN: Are the guys pretty chilled before heading onto stage for live shows?

ED: Yeah. Everyone’s very very relaxed, there’s not even a little bit of stress it’s really good. Yeah, it’s cool.

IMOGEN: If you weren’t in Louis London, what would you be doing?

ED: Ah what would I be doing? I would be…

IMOGEN: Life changes?

ED: Life changes. It does change. I don’t know what I would be doing. I’d be… well I’m gonna be kind of writing more music anyway. So, I guess I’d be writing on my own then?

IMOGEN: I’ve heard you’re a fan of Radiohead, is there anything you’ve taken away from them?

ED: Oh, they’re just freaks. I think the most incredible thing about Radiohead, which probably a lot of people would think this – but I think it’s definitely true is that they are totally Radiohead. Except, no album is at all the same. But, there’s a thread (which is – obviously his voice is very important), they’re pretty incredible like that. I think it’s more of an aspirational thing. I find music and artists who are good are the ones that keep their own imprint, but keep things changing. Which, is really fucking hard.

IMOGEN: I’ve been to a couple of your gigs before and everyone seems to notice that you (Ed) have great and interesting facial expressions when it comes to singing. What do you have to say about this?

ED: Haha um, it just feels like what I should be doing? To put it this way, I have been told by various people that I should tone it down. And I’ve actually thought about it and then I just find myself doing it. I can’t really not do it, because otherwise I feel like I’d be thinking about everything…

IMOGEN: You must have really stretchy face muscles?

ED: I do, I do. I probably give myself a lot of wrinkles.

IMOGEN: You’re all attractive young men, I’m guessing all of you have girlfriends?

ED: Um, yeah we do. Except there’s one lone ranger, I won’t even name him ‘cause he’s so lone and so ranger. He’s uh.. you can guess?

IMOGEN: Is he like … describe him?

ED: He’s the only one that plays sitting down.

IMOGEN: Keys … drummer!

ED: Drummer! Actually no, he may even have a girlfriend … I don’t know? I don’t know what they do haha.

IMOGEN: Who would you say is the coolest dude in Louis London?

ED: Probably Karl. Karl’s a pretty enigmatic character.

IMOGEN: I’ve seen him walking around uni, he looked pretty chilled… on his bike?

ED: I’ve seen him walking around too; on his bike, on his phone, with his cool hair. He just does things. He’s opened a restaurant in the past, he’s kind of started an engineering degree. He’s pretty enigmatic and a fairly cool chap.

IMOGEN: This is a bit of a funny question: If you had to be a kitchen appliance, what would you be and why?

ED: I’d be a blender. I don’t why though, but I think I’d be a blender. Wouldn’t that be exciting? Getting your … getting in and amongst something and just ripping it up. It’d be mad.

IMOGEN: What’s in store for the future? Any upcoming gigs or anything?

ED: Ah well, we’re not gigging at the moment. We’re having a few line up changes in the band and a few people want to go away for a little bit. Jack’s off, a few of the other boys are obviously kind of figuring out what they what to do. But, I’m kind of writing and will keep writing. And we’ll have a few gigs at the end of the year hopefully.

IMOGEN: What’s your favourite song?

ED: Ooo, that is a tough one. My favourite song is the bridge in “This Night Time”. I don’t know why, I just think it’s a good bridge… kinda works. It got described by another blogger as like white boy reggae… I was like, I don’t know if that’s a compliment or not, but I will kind of take it as a compliment.

IMOGEN: Haha you’re kind of all white?

ED: Ah yeah, pretty much. Karl’s got a bit of chocolate in him, doesn’t he?

IMOGEN: What is Karl?

ED: I think he’s Indian. Nah, his dad’s Sri Lankan. He’s actually got a very interesting background.

IMOGEN: This whole interview is just about Karl.

ED: Yeah. So, his restaurant was Portuguese-Goan-fusion-Indian kinda thing?

THE BREAKDOWN:

Hometown: Sydney, Australia.
Latest EP: The Big Deep, released 8 November 2013.
Sounds like: Turin Brakes, Young the Giant, The Temper Trap.
Say what? The boys raised nearly $9000 from fans, friends and family in September last year from their Pozible campaign to fund their second EP (The Big Deep).

Je suis la imaginer, Imogen

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