At night we dream of the interview with a band who advocates overthrowing the government, setting things on fire or waterboarding Sean Hannity. So it’s with a sense of disappointment when we get nice, polite musicians who only want to talk about their craft. When we first listened to We Were Promised Jetpacks, our first thought was “I want a shirt”. Our second thought was that there’s nothing better than a band who takes the ideas of Franz Ferdinand and updates them with better songwriting. Imagine our chagrin when we found this extremely young Scottish band to be excruciatingly polite. Although we’d rather this than the barely conscious, Darker My Love…Ladies and Gentleman, the next big thing from overseas: We Were Promised Jetpacks.
TDOA: How did you feel about your reception at the festival? There’s so many bands playing and so much politics behind who is “hyped” by blogs. Were you happy with the crowds?
WWPJ: We were delighted with the crowds. every single one was attentive and appreciative and lots of nice people came and spoke to us and said nice things about our band. The whole experience was a little strange, we were just delighted to be there!
TDOA: Did you get to see any bands and if so, what did you see that impressed you?
WWPJ: We weren’t the best at going to see bands we wanted to see. We kept missing them because we lost track of time or couldn’t be bothered walking ages to get somewhere. We did see a 12 piece marching band called ‘Mount Righteous’ at a house party and we thoroughly enjoyed them!
TDOA: I assume this was your first trip to America. Please share your impressions of the country.
WWPJ: It is an amazing place. We got to go to New York and play too. What a city! Also everybody we met was extremely polite and friendly and honest.
TDOA: Much has been made of how young, yet immensely talented you are. You’ve said that you each have varied musical influences. Is there a group that you think provides a common bond for you musically?
WWPJ: “Immensely talented”?! I will have to make sure my mum sees this interview! Our music tastes have become more similar as time has passed I think. But there are still some differences for sure. However, we all fell in love with Frightened Rabbit and The Twilight Sad at about the same time.
TDOA: Politics played such a big force in the music of Scotland and England in the 70′s, 80′s and part of the 90′s, but not much anymore. Any political motivations for the group or a sense of why there’s less focus on it now?
WWPJ: I don’t think we have any real political motivations or we certainly don’t make it a theme for the band. I do politics at uni just now but i don’t think I could bring myself to write a song about the treaties of the European Union.
TDOA: When might we expect a full-length album and perhaps another visit to the U.S.?
WWPJ: Our first album is out on June 15th! I think there are tentative plans being made for us to come back in either September or October or both.
TDOA: How do you feel your live sound translates in the studio and what approaches have you made to try and make the transition?
WWPJ: We recorded it live in the studio. It’s by no means a live album as we fixed mistakes and often spliced 3 different recordings of a song together to make one whole one! when we wrote this album we didn’t really have recording in mind. It was mostly written before Fatcat showed an interest in us so its pretty close to how we play it live. We tried to put some more subtle moments on the album because our live show is quite hectic and loud and in your face and I think that might have become pretty tiring on record. I think we might have the studio more in mind when we write our next bunch of songs.
TDOA: Can you list a few bands that you’ve heard this year, that might be flying under the radar for us over here? Anyone you like?
WWPJ: Yes! We love doing this. Dupec are amazing. Lyons, John B McKenna, Sebastian Dangerfield and Over The Wall are all from Edinburgh or Glasgow and are sweeeeet. Keeping it Scottish there is also Copy Haho and Danananakroyd who are pretty great too.
TDOA: Favorite live show thusfar and why, please.
WWPJ: I think probably when we played the Bowery Ballroom in new york. There are a few contenders but I think I’ll plump for that one. We were about halfway through our set and I was just thinking “how fun is this?!”. To have not released anything and be pretty unknown everywhere and play to a packed out place like the Bowery Ballroom and receive such a warm reception was pretty special. Getting to play in New York and Texas pretty much surpassed our expectations of what we would achieve as a band.
Not the greatest quality, but a brilliant performance:
For more information about WWPJ, visit their MySpace page at: http://www.myspace.com/wewerepromisedjetpacks
To order their first single (sure to be on our year-end top ten) “Quiet Little Voices”, visit: http://fat-cat.co.uk/fatcat/release.php?id=288