With Sharks new album ‘No Gods’ coming out in just a few short weeks, HTF went down to see frontman James Mattock in London and have a little chat. After spending a long day of interviews with several other music magazines, the tired and clearly exhausted James needed a little bit of cheering up, so let’s hope that HTF’s questions put a smile back on his face.
You can find out more about Sharks here: https://www.facebook.com/sharksuk
HTF: So your albums out in a few short weeks, would you care to tell us a little bit about that?
J: Yeah it’s our first record, and it’s been a long time coming but if anyone knows who we are like we’ve been around for five years and this is our first album. It’s a collection of our best songs that we had in that period of time really.
HTF: You guys seem to be getting your name out quite quickly, even my housemates have heard of you guys and they’re hipsters, so you must have done something before this?
J: Well we’ve had a couple of EP’s which were collected and put out as a compilation, so some people see that as our first record, but in our eyes this is our first record.
HTF: How does your album compare to your earlier recordings?
J: Yeah sonically different for sure like we’ve never had more than five days in a studio before now and this time we had five weeks. We had the luxury and the ability to make the record we’ve always wanted to make without being too crazy. We just had access to this really nice studio and that was very much a new thing for us to I guess the result of that is a more cleaner and thought out record.
HTF: You got a headline tour coming up, how does that make you feel?
J: It feels good yeah we’ve been touring as a band for like 3 years and yeah I was looking forward to not being the band that goes on fifteen minutes after the doors open.
HTF: Have you guys been selling out okay?
J: I have no idea how they’re going but it seems to be generating quite a bit on our Facebook. No one is expecting it to be too crazy but we’ve managed to generate a cool, small and trustworthy fan base so hopefully everyone will get together and enjoy themselves.
HTF: I notice you have a lot of merch, who does all your designing?
J: There are a few people that we know and usually use photography stuff which we like and are our ideas. There’s a guy on our label who has a degree in Graphic Design so he has the ability to put that stuff together, so if you want something simple he’s the man to go to. But our friend Tom Lacey from Ghost Of A Thousand he did the record artwork for and he does a few good ones.
HTF: HTF are planning a sponsored Sky Dive (not confirmed but in the process) how much would it take to get you to jump out of a plane?
J: If the world was gonna end tomorrow then yeah I’d do it but otherwise no way.
HTF: Have you got any embarrassing phobias?
J: I’ve never thought of irrational fears I have but…Sharks are pretty scary.
HTF: Ironic much!
J: There is something ironic about that.
HTF: Well I’m scared of frogs so at least it’s not embarrassing.
J: Nothing embarrassing about that, frogs are pretty horrible!
HTF: Who is your celebrity pin up girl?
J: I never used to have anything on my wall like that but I used to have Brody Dalle from The Distillers on my wall when I was 15. And I like how I can get away with it because I didn’t like having a half-naked chick on my wall in case my mum saw it but with that one I could just say “Oh I like her band.”
HTF: What is your funniest drunken experience?
J: I not really a big drinker but my most recent memory was when we were in Tokyo, Japan, and I got back to the hotel at about 2.30 and I was sharing my room with our guitar player Andy and I think I woke up at 6am and he still wasn’t back and we were all sure he had been kidnapped or something. We were in Tokyo for the first time so we were shitting ourselves you know. And literally, twenty minutes later he walked in still drunk. He had gone to a restaurant, not ordered anything, sat down and just slept until the owner kicked him out when they closed at 6am which is quite bizarre. We had a Photo-shoot the next day and we were all puking and hung over. I know this is my question but…Sorry Andy.
HTF: What part of the 90s do you miss the most?
J: I miss Rainbow the show that was my favourite. And play days, and I just miss being a kid and having nothing to worry about.
HTF: My housemate had a fruit winder the other day, not sure if it’s a 90s thing but it was definitely old school.
J: A fruit winder! No Way!
HTF: What are your thoughts on music piracy?
J: It is what it is, you’re gonna have to accept it. It’s always gonna exist and there’s nothing I can do about it. My generation has been born into it. I know i’ve done it and I’m pretty sure everyone has stolen music and I still buy music and I have faith that people will buy music and keep the music going.
HTF: Could you record the greatest song on earth (in your opinion) and have it buried so no one could listen to it?
J: Well yeah I’d want people to hear it. But albums don’t satisfy us completely as artists anyway. When we write songs and we’re excited about it, it doesn’t matter what everyone else thinks. But it would be a shame to let the greatest song in the world go to soil.
Interviewer: Louisa Smith