Every Monday we will be bringing you an unsigned singer or band as part of our Independent Music Monday feature. This week, we caught up with Bare Traps find out more about them…
Who is in the band, how did you meet, where are you from and how did you come up with the band name?
Bare Traps is comprised of four ex-cons that met in a halfway house after all serving triple life sentences. In descending level of beardedness, we are: Luke – guitar, production, delinquent behaviour; Sam – vocals, guitar, sex appeal; Liam – bass, bass-face, beer; Scott – drums, button pushing, banter. We like to tell people that the band name is a homonymic reference to the type of situations we get ourselves into in life where you know you’re going to regret it, but you do it anyway. So in this context the word ‘bare’ means exposed i.e. a trap you’re aware of and still walk into. But that’s just us chatting breeze…
Who were your musical influences when you were growing up and who are your influences now?
Errrm well that question relies on us having actually grown up, which is debateable at times. We were inspired to become musicians by quite an eclectic group of influences. Sam was inspired by John Mayer, Luke was raised on Michael Jackson, Scott learnt drums listening to the Arctic Monkeys, and Liam grew up on the Chilli Peppers. The band’s collective style is primarily a combination of influences from bands and artists like Bloc Party, Foals, James Blake, Friendly Fires, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and Bonobo. We’re currently really into Will Joseph Cook, Clean Cut Kid, and Homeshake, so their influences are beginning to creep through.
How would you describe your sound?
If sunshine made a sound it would sound like Bare Traps. So sunshine sounds like indie-pop basically. Maybe.
What is your latest single called and what was the influence behind it?
Our latest single is called All In You and it was influenced by love, sunshine, and sheer hedonistic positivity. Musically, the main guitar hook is inspired by afrobeat style guitar lines. It really lent itself to tropical sounds, so we used some more exotic instruments such as steel pans and marimba too. We forever want to be on some tropical island, and this track takes us there if only in our minds.
What’s your local music scene like?
The music scene in London is extremely diverse and interesting, but it’s over-saturated, which has resulted in it being a tough place to play shows. It can be difficult to get people to your shows, especially when you’re starting out. On the plus side though, there are loads of great venues to play and a whole plethora of awesome acts.
What do you have planned for the next 12 months? Any albums or festivals?
We’re planning on releasing a couple more singles this year, but nothing more than that. It just isn’t cost-effective for us as an unsigned band to do so, as much as we’d love the experience of recording an album. In terms of festivals, we’re playing Sundown Festival, headlined by Craig David and Pendulum, which is going to be sick.
Is there anyone you’d love to collaborate with?
A collaboration with Mura Masa would be immense! He was one of our favourite artists of last year. His production would work really well with our sound. We both love ourselves some steel drums for a start. We reckon he’d add an extra dimension to our music that would just be incredible.
Any funny stories surrounding your live performances?
Oh yes – we have a corker! When we played The Great Escape Festival 2016, we left booking our accommodation until fairly late and found that there were very few options left by the time we were searching. We found a place on Air BnB that the four of us could stay at, but we’d all have to share one room. It was instant book, so we just reserved it. When we got there it turned out to be an S&M dungeon! There was a rail of kinky dress-up outfits, a bowl of condoms and lube, and pictures of vaginas everywhere. We spent a good while hitting each other with the spanking paddle and dying with laughter. The best part was the House Rules, but they’re a bit too ‘descriptive – shall we say – to list here…
What is the one thing that you want readers to know about your band?
We like to have a lot of fun and we hope we can share that with you through our music.