Interview: Julian Casablancas’ favourite new band? INHEAVEN gear up for the Neu Tour

Julian Casablancas’ favourite new band? INHEAVEN gear up for the Neu Tour

After months in the shadows, this shoegaze-inclined group are stepping to the fore. They talk to DIY ahead of the Neu Tour 2015.

Three of the country’s best new bands are treading their own separate courses and taking bright baby-steps. This October, however, they’re joining forces for a triple-headliner extravaganza across the country. It’s the DIY Presents the Neu Tour 2015, and it’s going to be insane. We’ve put together a guide to the bands on the bill. Get tickets here.

At this stage, INHEAVEN are the most mysterious act on the Neu Tour triple-bill. That’s not out of intention. Led by James and Chloe, this South London group are looking to bring back the magic of falling in love with a new band, obsessing over their every move, guitar strap and sentiment. The bold, shoegaze-nodding lift of debut single ‘Regeneration’ warrants that kind of reaction. And it’s had fans from both sides of the Atlantic flocking forwards in excitement - one of these is none other than Julian Casablancas.

What happened when you put your first track out - a rush of attention?

James: A mass of emails. It is quite scary, but I think we feel more confident about it now. When you put a song out, there’s a big chance that nobody’s going to like it. But it takes you back, and then it spirals out of control. The next minute you’re on this big tour.

When putting out ‘Regeneration’, did you know about what you’d do next?

J: We hid away for about a year, rehearsing and getting everything ready. We wanted to be really solid. Originally, we were going to release one song a week, self-released. And we’d do a limited cassette tape. We were keen on doing it all ourselves, and we still are in some senses.

Chloe: I think you’ve got to have that mentality. Nobody’s going to do it for you.

J: A few months after starting, Cult Records got in contact. For us, that was such a big deal. The fact that we’ve made waves in the States was mindblowing. They’d contacted Rory Attwell, and he forwarded their email on saying ‘you should probably check this out’. We got told that Julian [Casablancas] liked the track. It was insane.

C: I thought someone must have died, that day. I got a call from James at half six in the morning, and why else would someone call at that time?

J: Since then, it’s all been really fun. We haven’t met Julian yet. We need to go to America.

You’ve been making your own ‘zines - what’s actually inside them?

C: I’ve been making those. For the original ‘Regeneration’ single, I made a ten-second clip and I made all these flashing images. Imagery is really important for this band. So I had a lot of images, words and poems. It was a nice little thing to have on tour. Going to gigs, if you got a sticker or a pin badge, that was the best thing ever. We’ll definitely make one for the next run of dates. It’s a little memento.

J: We want people to have that same connection of when you’re sixteen and discovering a band. You want to know everything and you want to own everything. We want that special touch. And a lot of that might have been lost in the digital age.

C: I’ve got so much crap from gigs, back in the day. Hopefully our ‘zines can be added to people’s boxes of stuff.

Is ‘Regeneration’ a song that’s about London, gentrification and a city transforming? Or something completely different?

J: It was actually more about transformation of ourselves. It’s about being bored of yourself and changing for the better. I guess that’s achieved within London. The city does have a big impact. In a band, there’s an element of feeling slightly crushed out here. But it has a positive message - it’s more about redefining yourself.

VANT will play DIY Presents the Neu Tour 2015, also featuring The Big Moon and INHEAVEN and starting 1st October. See the dates here and get tickets here.

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