Birmingham’s The Clause talk new single ‘In My Element,’ touring with This Feeling and John Lewis Christmas Adverts
Written by Music on 8th December 2019
The Clause hail from Birmingham, England but belong, spiritually at least, in the midst of early to mid-90s Manchester alongside The Stones Roses, Oasis and Northside. This is not to say that they are just some brit-pop renaissance cabaret however, they are much more than that. With a certain eloquence and depth to their songwriting, they channel the likes Primal Scream and Pulp with a modern twist on new single ‘In My Element.’
Having spent 2019 supporting The Blinders, Inhaler and The Pale White, as well as touring around the country with This Feeling, 2020 promises to be an exciting year for Birmingham’s brightest new band. Radio Caley’s Mackenzie Burns caught up with Pearce and Liam before their stripped-back set supporting The Enemy’s Tom Clarke at a sold out Firewater, in Glasgow on 29.11.19.
Talk us through the new single ‘In My Element,’ what were you going for and did it turn out how you had expected it to?
Liam: It actually grew in the studio. We had the riff and then we started writing over it because you know it can be quite similar, it’s the same riff the whole way through so to make that sound diverse we really had to layer it. I think that’s the clever part of the tune.
Pearce: We had theriff about three or four years ago and it’s just been sitting in the back catalogue. If we’d done it four years ago it would have been terrible. I’m glad we waited, you can’t force it.
Describe your sound and how it has evolved?
Liam: We’ve just grown up in general I think. We were quite young when we wrote tunes like ‘Shut Me Out’ and bands like Catfish and the Bottlemen were massive. As you grow up you discover music from throughout the decades and take your best bits from that.
Pearce: Someone, I think it was a review, described us as having a 60s swagger, an 80s groove and a 90s attack. That was like an epiphany, that’s exactly what we’re going for.
Do you write more for the studio or are you always thinking about it translating well to a live setting?
Pearce: I think when writing a song, I think more about live reactions than how it’s perceived on record. It does depend on the song though. ‘In My Element,’ we knew would be a class song live because of the energy it had.
Liam: ‘In My Element’ we only started playing live because we could fit The Pink Panther Theme into the riff.People would come up and say “what was that tune?” And I’d say “Pink Panther” and they’d say “no, the bit you played after that.” So yeah I’d say we write more for live. That’s where we get our kicks man!
Pearce: See the slower songs though, like ‘Where Are You Now?’ I think of more for the recording like, would this get on the John Lewis Christmas advert or not?
How has This Feeling helped you develop as a live band?
Liam: I wouldn’t say specifically the This Feeling gigs have but playing live this year has definitely. This Feeling have given us loads of good opportunities which has given us the chance to further develop.They’ve exposed us to festivals as well like, Isle of Wight was my favourite and Y Not was good craic.
Pearce: Yeah, Isle of Wight was good because we played on the Thursday, then all our gear went home and we stayed for the weekend.
Liam: We were all fresh-faced when we played but see by the Sunday we were absolute creatures!
You’ve had a few notable support slots. Who has taught you most about the music industry?
Liam: Well Barns Courtney didn’t even make his own soundcheck so that taught us quite a lot about the industry, that’s where Pearce gets it now.
Pearce: The Pigeon Detectives were probably our first big support slot and they were good but we haven’t really looked at certain bands onstage and went “that’s what we want to be like.”
Obviously ‘Where Are You Now?’ is a mellower sound for you guys, meanwhile ‘Tokyo’ incorporates some interesting samples. Are there any new avenues in terms of style or genre that you’re desperate to explore?
Liam: Disco more so man, like, there’s not many bands doing that and the whole atmosphere of having tunes that you go out to dance to, they’re about being as extravagant as possible. Not that I’m going to be changing straight into my flares or anything though.
Pearce: In some of the songs that are coming up we’ve kind of mixed things together and tried to create something new really.
Liam: I’d say it’s more that we don’t think too much about it. Because we listen to it, it flows in naturally.
What’s the long term goal? Where do you guys see yourself in 5 years?
Liam: I don’t know man, when we first started…
Pearce: We want to be the biggest f***ing band in the UK. You’ve got to be serious.
Liam: Yeah, you can’t just be like “we want a few more cans on the rider.” Competition is healthy, you’ve got to believe that, in the end, you’re going to get where you want to be.
Find out more about The Clause:
Tickets for The Clause’s next Glasgow gig at Nice N’ Sleazy’s on 21.2.20: https://www.skiddle.com/whats-on/Glasgow/Nice-N-Sleazy/This-Feeling—Glasgow/13679789/