Out of the darkness

Out of the darkness

Chris Lau speaks to The Horrors, and learns there's nothing scary about their new sound that will make you want to dance

British indie band The Horrors has been enjoying plenty of success - including appearances at some of the world's top music festivals - since they debuted back in 2005. The group's post-punk, psychedelic sound has also made them a prominent member of Britain's thriving indie scene.

They had previously released three critically-acclaimed albums: Strange House, Primary Colours and Skying. Now comes the 10-track Luminous, released earlier this month, which adds a brighter sound to the band's discography.

Frontman Faris Badwan says that during the recording sessions for the latest album, the band had more time to think about the music's direction, and also to experiment with sounds.

"The past few albums have been so dense. We had more space to make this album," he tells Young Post. "I think when we recorded the album, we did it in two parts. We'd created the first part by May [last year], and then we decided to record a few more songs."

The five guys - the other members are guitarist Joshua Hayward, percussionist Joseph Spurgeon, keyboardist and synth-player Tom Cowan and bassist Rhys Webb - formed The Horrors in the English holiday town of Southend-on-Sea in 2005.

Back then they were focused on more of a garage and punk sound, but they have now evolved into a leading band on the indie-circuit, best known for their dreamy rock music.

As for this album, Badwan says they wanted to make sure they took their time. Luminous has been in the making for 15 months, since then The Horrors dropped a remix album, Higher, in 2012.

But the band's last studio album was Skying, which came out in 2011. Fans have had to exercise extreme patience while waiting for new, original material. And when their favourite band had been releasing a new album every two years, it felt especially tough.

It is certainly worth the wait. Badwan says the extra time gave the members a chance to reflect on their music and experiment with new sounds.

One example he gives is a new way of recording, invented by the band's guitarist Hayward. The technique makes the sound all the more obscure and abstract.

"The latest thing that he built was an envelope filter," says Badwan. "It changes the way the sound decays."

Bassist Webb agrees that this album is very different to a lot of the music the band has produced in the past. He says it is, in a way, brighter than previous releases. It was this that inspired the title, Luminous.

"We wanted to make music [people] can dance to, music that elevates," he says.

The band is now set to bring this music to fans around the world. First they will play a long list of gigs at home and in Europe, before heading to the United States.

And Badwan, who had a great time playing in Hong Kong three years ago, says he loves the vibe of the city, and for all you Horror-loving fans, added: "We'd love to come back and play soon."

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
Out of the darkness

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