THE guys of SAHARAS…
have been telling me about their new single, Shake My Fever, and what it is all about. I was eager to learn how they met and how music came into their life; what they have planned going forward and a couple of rising artists we need to get involved with.
The band reveal their favourite albums and tell me how it feels being on stage together; whether they get time to unwind away from music; what they hope to accomplish before the year is through – the chaps each pick a song to end the interview with.
Hi, guys. How are you? How has your week been?
Hello! We’re all good, cheers. Recovering from Reading Festival but we’re very excited about the release of our new single this Friday. We’re also looking forward to a show we’re playing this Saturday over at the Trinity in Harrow.
For those new to your music; can you introduce yourselves, please?
We’re SAHARAS; a four-piece Alt/Rock band with added synthesised pulses and textures out of Windsor, U.K. The band is made up of Nando (Lead Vocals and Guitar), Dan (Drums); Matt (Bass) and Alex on guitar and backing vocals.
How did SAHARAS form? When did you all meet?
We’ve known each other since primary-school and have always shared a mutual love for music whilst growing up listening to the same bands. In early-2014, we decided to start writing music together and here we are! Still going strong and enjoying it as much as we did back then.
Alex is Dan’s younger brother and he’s been around supporting the band since we started out; whether it’s been going to near enough all of our gigs or putting together the video for our track, Mirrored. It was definitely natural to implement Alex into the line-up sooner rather than later and we’re proper-buzzing to have him on board – the four-leaf clover is complete!
Shake My Fever is your new single. Can you reveal the story behind the song?
In terms of inspiration, the lyrics are centred around having someone new coming into your life and shaking things up in a euphoric and lustful way – to the point where you doubt whether it’s too good to be true in comparison to previous experiences. Overall, it’s a light-hearted and upbeat song which is quite different to what we normally tend to write about.
It follows on from Sweat. Will there be more material coming next year?
We’ve put the majority of our time and focus into writing new material over the last couple of months and have got some demos to show for it - and we’ll be testing the songs live over the course of our next few gigs. We’re definitely looking to keep progressing and to release new music by early next year, latest! We really enjoy recording.
How did music come into your lives? Which artists were you fans of growing up?
The beginnings of our love for music coincided with the beginning of secondary-school, around 2005/2006. Debuts from Arctic Monkeys, The Kooks and Bloc Party helped pave our way toward a particular ‘taste’ in music and led us to explore influencers of these bands such as The Strokes, The Cribs etc. Alex would listen to Dan’s records and this lead to his similar tastes also!
What do you hope to achieve by the end of 2018?
First and foremost, we just want our music to reach a broader audience and we’re hoping that the new single will help us do so. Additionally, we want to keep playing the live circuits and branch out further afield. Ultimately, we’re aiming to expand our fanbase!
Have you each got a favourite memory from your time in music so far – the one that sticks in the mind?
Hearing everything coming together in the studio recording our very first single was a very special memory that we have and always will. Every time we have returned since that feeling returned and has seemed to have grown; long may that continue! Aside from that, listening to one of our tracks getting played on BBC Introducing radio was definitely a highlight for us.
Which one album means the most to each of you would you say (and why)?
Matt: The album I would never skip or even shuffle would be Humbug - Arctic Monkeys
A ‘tricky’ third album which I would describe as their strongest. I loved the change of direction down a slightly darker path, whilst retaining everything I’d come to love about the band both lyrically and musically.
Nando: Mine has to be Given to the Wild by The Maccabees
This album inspired, and still inspires, my musical style in terms of guitar and the sound I aim for on a personal level. The guitar work is amazing on this record and it carries out a lot of reverb – something I can’t live without…Orlando is also a hero of mine.
Alex: This has to be one of the hardest questions for any musician to answer; however, right now, I have to lean towards My Love Is Cool by Wolf Alice
As a group, they’ve created something very special and pure in this album and I find it so easy to get lost in its dark and dreamy sound. Also, I have to mention Joff’s creative and unconventional approach to guitar playing; he’s definitely a massive inspiration towards my own development in music. Oh…and they’re wicked live too.
Dan: My favourite album has to be Total Life Forever by Foals
The album has always spoken to me artistically and stylistically, with Spanish Sahara being the single that influenced my musical direction growing up as a late-teen. From a drumming perspective, Jack’s style of drumming carries such a wide variety of speed and consistency and his technique is preserved throughout the album. This is something I’ve always hoped to achieve through my own drumming style.
If you could support any musician alive today, and choose your own rider, what would that entail?
We think we can all agree that it would have to be Foals. They are an immense inspiration to us, stylistically and musically.
As for the rider; we’re quite cheap so any beer would do (Matt prefers a lovely smooth ale). We’d also demand rum ham! If you know, you know…
Might we see some tour dates coming up? Where might we be able to catch you play?
You sure can! As it stands, we’re playing Notting Hill Arts Club for Turtle Tempo on 15th September supporting Leader. Following on from that, we’re playing a DPRK Records showcase for the Windsor Fringe on 3rd October. Following this, we will be looking to play plenty more shows in and around London. You can keep up to date with our shows via our Facebook and Spotify!
Do you all love being on the stage? What is it like travelling between gigs and bonding with one another?
We love sharing the stage together. We treat it as a celebration of the time and dedication we put into writing our songs. It is very rewarding when you get a positive reaction from a crowd! Travelling between gigs is generally a cosy experience; transporting gear and ourselves around in a Fiesta and Polo (but you have to make do). We use our time travelling to gigs to share new songs we’ve discovered with one another. A good time is had by all.
What advice would you give to new artists coming through?
Keep writing new material, experiment; express yourself and, above all, enjoy what you are doing!
IN THIS PHOTO: Hot Dreams/PHOTO CREDIT: Benjamin Edward Simmons
Do you get much time to chill away from music? How do you unwind?
Music is our way to unwind, but we also enjoy a good T.V. series: It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is a big favourite of ours. The pub is always on the cards too.
Finally, and for being good sports; you can all choose a song and I’ll play it here (not any of your music - I will do that).
The Growlers - Late Bloomers
Sports – Panama
Phantogram - You Don’t Get Me High Anymore
Hot Dreams – Plungepool