How was performing at Country 2 country last weekend?
We had our album playback for a select amount of fans. It was the first year we haven’t actually performed at Country 2 Country apart from the first year it took place. We’ve always done a secret show or one that was already announced but this year we got to watch and enjoy the atmosphere which was really fun. At the album playback we were super nervous as it was the first time our fans were getting to hear our new music and preview our music video which was out on the 15th March. It was nerve racking but pure adrenaline and it was so weird to have that adrenaline rush again having been in the studio for a really long time so it was really fun.
Does Guilty set the tone for the rest of the album?
Yeah, definitely. I mean, there are different sounds on there such as ‘Guilty’ and another song called ‘Echo’ which are quite pop-y. But, we have some ballads which we are known for but the big thing for us was stepping everything up. Country has changed so much and we have changed with. When we first went to Nashville, we loved playing acoustics which we still do but there are so many influences in Nashville now which have come through to us. Seeing Little Big Town on the weekend was great as they have always been a benchmark for us; their progression is what we want to do. If you listen to their first album it’s very different to their new stuff and I think our third album is naturally different to our first one. What’s great is that it’s a reflection of how much fun we’re having at the moment like in Nashville we’ve been out a lot, met younger crowds, made loads of friends and just having a really good time.
Do you feel there is more or less pressure this time around?
I don’t think there is more pressure; we are just enjoying what we’re doing. We just want to keep creating music and stepping up everything that we do and we can’t believe it’s album 3 already! We’ve been together for nearly 5 years now and we have just finished recording our third album ‘Accidentally On Purpose’ which is out next month so that’s pretty quick really for that time scale. Ben and I have written everything ourselves and enjoyed that process then we went into the studio with our producer, Lindsay Ryan. The last two albums we had other producers so that was different for us but the label have really supported our vision without interfering too much with our sound. They left us to our devices to enjoy the whole process.
Was most or all of the album recorded in Nashville?
Yes it was the whole thing actually. We recorded it with Lindsay in a small room in Nashville and we did bring some people in to play extras too. It was more pop the way we approached it compared with our first two albums where we had a full band in a very Nashville way who got their own music down as well as us getting up and playing. This time we crafted to the songs from our writing sessions. It was so creative in the studio with the three of us; it was so much fun. We are so happy with the sound of it and we feel a little bit guilty we’ve only been playing it to ourselves for the last few months so we can’t wait for everyone to hear it.
One of your songs was written by Ed Sheeran how did that come about?
We are friends with a guy, Sam, who plays Gunner in the tv show Nashville and he was at a show when he bumped into Ed who knew him from the show. Ed invited him to his show which was when Sam called us and said “I’ve got 4 tickets do you want to come” and we were like “of course we do!” It was amazing. Then we ended up at the after show party and I (Ben) was trying to stay cool and not make a fool of myself in front of Ed Sheeran. I went to the toilet and came back 10/15 minutes later and Ed pointed at me. I said “I’m Ben.” and he’s like “I know who you are.” I was really trying to be cool around him. He said he pre-ordered our second album and that he loved it.
I turned around half way through the party and I see this girl upside down on the beer keg doing a hand stand. I looked over and it looked like Crissie … it was Chrissie! Crissie was the life and soul of the party was getting respect from Ed Sheeran for the whole night. We had a great time, he said he’d like to write with us but was so busy touring so he sent a couple of songs and we loved one of them straight away! It was very ‘us’; it had our spin on it. The song is called ‘Stay The Night’ and you can tell it’s an Ed Sheeran song. It’s amazing to think that 5 years on we are singing one of his songs. It’s a bit surreal really.
Will Stay The Night be a single?
We are not really sure which songs are going to be singles just yet. It may well be but we don’t know just yet.
With you going back out on tour soon what can we expect this time around?
We are so excited to get back on the road. We are playing in London at the Royal Albert Hall which is such an iconic venue. We just can’t wait to perform there! We are going all over the country playing huge theatres which is really great and we are very excited to play the new music for everyone. We are worried about how to create the set list as we have so many songs now from album 1, 2 and 3 which I’m sure we are going to be talking about very soon.
We have the boys in the band joining us on the road as well so it’s going to be so much fun. The shows will have so much energy and probably some bright colours to match our new kind of style that we have now.