Tuesday, 5 March 2013

You can’t knock a brogue, can you...? The Understudies part two-Bree Wright

Can I describe the Understudies in three words? This. Is. Desire. Bree Wright

In the first part of the Understudies interview we met Brian Bryden. If Brian is the poetic mind of the band, then it's artistic eyes belong to keyboardist Bree Wright. Kind of an ad-hoc artistic director  she is responsible for the records looking as good as they sound. The sleeve for 'My life is not French film EP', for example, uses Ken Russel's stunning image of a 14 year old Teddy  Girl against the back drop of a war-torn East end of London. As well as being a bit Smiths, it's also one of the first photographic record of British youth culture. It's an inspired choice. As I said in the first interview, I was wowed by the image going as far as the record download slip from the '...Summer of Love' 7". Is attention to details important to Bree?
It is. That particular image was from the statue that the lyrics were inspired by so it seemed a natural thing to do. I think like most of us I grew up poring over artwork and inlay sleeves. When you didn’t know a lot about a band (in the pre-internet age) it felt like you were discovering more from those few details. Also personally, my parents never had vinyl that I recall as we moved a lot when I was younger and I grew up with cassettes and CDs, so it’s all been a bit in reverse for me and I’ve realised how much a part of the whole experience it is. I feel very lucky to be involved in that.

She is also, with new boys Ian Cowen and Thom Allott ((They have been fitting in..)Very well! It's been great to have Ian as Brian was adding so much in the studio it was getting essential. They've definitely gotten the feel of the existing songs, I can’t wait to start on some new stuff with them. And they're both such lovely guys too, obviously, so they're fitting in nicely.) and drummer Kris colour in Brian's songs with delicate phrasing with verve and tiny pockets of panache. Although Bree seems to think they may not be needed at all!

We’ve known Brian for such a long time now and he’s always written incredibly honest songs so it’s something that we’ve grown used to. Mostly we’re just hoping we can do them justice! I often think he’s at his best with those types of quiet songs too, sometimes they need nothing more than him and guitar.

The bands excitement about the new LP is absolutely infectious. Most of our songs have been knocking around for a while but not been recorded, though we do definitely have new ones in there. It should have a good variety and there’s some quite mental guitar stuff which I actually love. One thing we've noticed in the recording process is that there have been some dark horses and a few we weren't thinking were contenders are suddenly standing out. Also, A Little Orchestra have been recording on a couple in the last few days and they've just transformed them, really taken them to a new place. It was like one of those moments I'd always heard people talk about, we were really blown away by them. 

It would seem things are unbelievably upbeat in the Understudies camp (Favourite moment? All I can say is I’m glad you’ve asked me this after we played Union Chapel the other week! So yeah, that! Amazing.) and I cant help but hope the positiveness makes it on to the grooves of the records.

Before we let the Understudies slip away back into their creative hole, I wouldn't be doing my job properly if I didn't ask on behalf of all the Bree-ettes on where she gets the inspiration for her outfits from:-

Haha, are we really doing this question?! Excellent. Umm, there’s little consistency. It used to always be a dress, now it’s more likely what I wore to work that day or what’s clean! And you can’t knock a brogue, can you...?

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