Sometimes it’s best if I can’t come up with a band that I can compare you to. The Lysergic Suite use the common configuration of guitar/bass/drums and hail from Leicester. But it’s their use of synths and a sound that relies heavily on psychedelic rock that starts you on a fresh path. Rather than sounding formulaic or overdone, they create a sound that mixes everything we love about rock. Tom Meighan from Kasabian contributed to their most recent EP and they seem certain to become another great British band. Vocalist/guitarist Gren Spencer spoke to TDOA writer Linn.
TDOA: Can you tell me a little about your background. How did you all come together as Lysergic Suite? When did the band form?
GS: I started writing tunes and learning to record a few years back. (I) never thought anyone would be interested in hearing them to be honest. They were long seven minute, fucking Krautrock psychedelia…
I did that for a few years, then met Adem (Drummer) who persuaded me to put together a live thing. Liam (Bass) came along later from another local band and we just started… It’s been a mad 6 months when you think about it.
TDOA: Can you indentify each member and instruments?
GS: Gren Spencer (Vocals, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Synths, Programming)
Adem Custic (Drums, Programming)
Liam Houchen (Bass Guitar, Guitar, Vocals)
TDOA: You’re working on your first album now, following the EP release. Will the album follow on from that, or take a different progression?
GS: I suppose it’s a natural progression from where we were when we did the E.P. The albums sounding quite a bit different, even more psychedelic I guess. Heavier in places… It’s going to be fucking mental….
TDOA: Who produced EP and producing album?
GS: I produced the E.P myself, then had Tim Holmes from Death In Vegas mix it for us at the Contino Rooms. We’re doing all of the album ourselves and mixing it at Fortress Studios in London, which is basicly an insane asylum.
TDOA: Having now worked with two of Kasabian – not a bad CV reference! – how did the connection with Tom and Jay come about?
GS: They’re friends of ours, we share a studio in Leicester. I love those guys, they’re down to earth. There isn’t any pretense with them and that shows in the music they make. “Fucking have this and if you don’t like it, don’t listen to it.”. We did it for fun, nothing more. That’s what this band is about, making music, and making music with other people.
TDOA: Can you talk through with a few words about each of the EP tracks and (if you can at this stage) what will be on the album? Is the new album material featured in your present live set?
GS: Ghosts On Crusade was written about the Jerusalem crusades. I was reading about it at the time and it played on my mind. The fact that the Christians killed more people all in all than the nazis ever did. Tom sings that one, he’s supposed to be God, in a tounge in cheek way, calling to the Knights Templar to take what they want.
In The Morning is an apology to someone very special, but I cant really say anything more about that.
Earth and Water is a Krautrock conspiracy theory adventure.. haha…
and Seven Gram was written when we had seven grams in the studio, simple as that.
As for the album, we have it all in rough form, to listen through to, but nothings in concrete yet, so i cant say what will be on it.. But yeah, we play a couple of tracks from it live…
TDOA: Who does lyrics/music within the group and how do you go about the writing process, inspiration et al?
GS: I write and record the stuff, then have the lads come in and change it, add to it, and figure it out with me… even though I write it, I couldnt do anything without the others, I’d be lost.
TDOA: Are there any plans for the US, either touring or album release?
GS: Yeah, I’ve been over a couple of times to SXSW and CMJ in New York, we were planning to do SXSW this year, but are going to concentrate on the album and do CMJ festival instead… They’re both amazing festivals, I wish we could pull that off over here… Also want to get back to Europe soon. There’s so many places to go and explore.