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Lois - Interview

  by Dave Goodwin

published: 21 / 5 / 2015

Lois - Interview


In the third of our series 'Is This Your Year?', in which we will be following the fortunes of five acts over the course of a year, Dave Goodwin speaks to Nottingham-based 60's and 70's-influenced rock act, Lois

The band Lois hail from East and North Nottingham, and consist of John Selby (vocals, guitar), Rich Spencer (bass), Lee Matysiak (Hammond organ) and Adrian Maguire (drums). They are a tight-knit outfit, influenced heavily by 60's and 70's US and British rock and roll, but with their own unique sound. They started their recording career with an EP 'Velvet Mornings', which received a lot of airplay from local radio as well as being picked up by Mark Radcliffe on Radio 2 and played several times on 6Music. Since then they have gone on to release their debut album, 'The Polperro Horse Bus Company', which was partially co-produced and engineered by the great Guy Massey (Manic Street Preachers, the Beatles). They have also built up a name for themselves on the stage, and people have been starting to take notice. A lot of the tracks on the debut album were aired initially on Soundcloud or other outlets in demo form, before they released the finished product, which has been selling well ever since, last year Many of those who picked it up put it quickly to the top of their favourites list for last year. For the third article in our new series 'Is This Your Year?', in which we will be following the fortunes of five different acts over the course of a year, we spoke to John Selby about Lois. PB: What are your main objectives for 2015? JS: We're starting work on our second album, which will have the distinctive Lois retro rock and roll 60's edge with some grooves riffs and some nice melodic numbers. The gear we use is mostly vintage style amps and guitars, as well as Hammond and Wurlitzer. We keep our guitar sounds pretty simple as I use a Fender Strat, Tele or Gibson Les Paul with my 22 watt Fender 65 deluxe, so the majority of my sound is proper valve distortion with the addition of a fuzz face big muff and vox wah used on some stuff for a different colour. Lee uses a Vox Amp and a Gretch with vox wah and reverb. We're not approaching the second album by trying to do something totally different to the first album. We just pretty much write and record what we love the sound of, so in that respect it sort of follows on from the first album. The songs, despite having a 60's retro vibe, are very different songs to the first album. There are some heavier riffs and also some very gentle picky tracks with soaring vocals, but there will still be a rock and roll beat track in there or two. We're playing live throughout the summer, including Deerstock Festival which we absolutely love playing. We put the first album out on Neon Grove Music and have recently had the great pleasure in signing a publishing deal with I'm Not from London, which is a Nottingham label headed by the very dedicated Will Robinson, which we are very excited about. PB: Do you have any ideas of how you are going to achieve these objectives? JS: We start recording at the end of May at Superfly Studios with Andy Banfield, who co-produced and engineered the majority of the first album, as we just love the way he records and the studio is like our second home. We might again do a couple of the tracks with Guy Massey too, who is also a great bloke to work with. With regard to gigs, we're currently talking to promoters and trying to get a tour organised. We are also seeking a new manager, as our last manager has just moved down to Devon, so at the moment we are trying to do it all between us. PB: What are your main concerns as a group? JS: We worry about the state of the world and all the trouble going off, and how anyone can ever fix it. From a musical point of view the modern music scene is a bit of a worry, with nothing really to get excited about, and some of the stuff on radio is very uninspiring. Hence we tend to look to the past for new stuff to listen too. There is nothing better than finding some unknown song from the 60s that no one has ever heard of. But then as a wise Jamaican gentleman once sang, "Don't worry about a thing cos every little things gonna be alright" PB: What are your hopes as a group? JS: More exposure and to grow our fanbase which is happening organically, with the use of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, a mailing list, music press, and most importantly the fans and their word of mouth. We really have noticed an ever growing following, which is what makes all the hard work worth it. Also our first album is now available as a gatefold two disc vinyl, which goes down well, and we are told will become very collectible. PB: What are your fears? JS: We don't really have many fears for the band as we just keep doing what we love, and we will just keep on doing it because we love it. The fact people come and see us and buy the albums makes it a very special band to be in, and we never want it to end. Our biggest fear is that someone in the world or some government will do something stupid and ruin everything. PB: Do you have any long-term plans at this stage as a group? JS: The long term plan is just to keep writing recording and playing till the day we die and then carry on! We are constantly writing and have a very strict quality control process. I write a lot of songs every week then we run through them all,and burn anything that doesn't make the grade of grab us. We have currently five folders full of songs ready to be worked up with the band, so running out of songs won't be a problem, just raising the funds to record them is what slows the whole process down. We would like to set up a UK tour and a European tour. PB: Thank you. Photos by Dave Goodwin www.davegoodwinimages.com

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Lois - Interview

Lois - Interview

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live reviews

Jam Cafe, Nottingham, 10/7/2014
Lois - Jam Cafe, Nottingham, 10/7/2014
Dave Goodwin enjoys Lois's unique blend of 60's music, rock and roll and funk at a home city gig to launch their debut album at the Jam Café in Nottingham

digital downloads



Guns of the Governor (2019)
Versatile and diverse second album from Nottingham-based rock and roll-influenced band Lois
The Polperro Horse Bus Company (2014)

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