7th December 2019

The Clause @ EBGBs | Interview and Review

The Clause describe themselves as having a ‘60’s swagger, 80’s groove, and a 90’s sound’; They are an amalgamation of all of these, but still maintain a clear originality and authenticity in their sound.

I got to see the band when they played EBGBs on 30th November. It’s their first time playing Liverpool – they’ve been on their ‘In My Element’ tour travelling the country, playing in Glasgow only the night before. The venue itself is reminiscent of The Cavern Club; brick walls and low-lighting, a small stage, and crowded room buzzing in anticipation of the band’s arrival.

The band walk onstage to Samuel L. Jackson’s Ezekiel 25: 17 speech from Pulp Fiction before kicking off the set with ‘Tokyo’. Their set began with the same power that was preserved throughout the entire gig. An electric combination of groove and rock flowed throughout the room, with the atmosphere being shared by both band and audience. Even when the band slowed down to perform their single ‘Where Are You Now?’, the energy was retained in the crowd; they collectively sang along to the chorus, and the echoed ‘where are you now?’ seeming to fly about the room. The audience did not stop singing along and dancing until the last chord, the last note, the last beat –  this only proving the power of the groups music and popularity of the band itself; Four lads from Birmingham, who are headlining on their first tour, have a full room in Liverpool singing their songs back to them. The gig ended with their newest released single ‘In My Element’, a song perfected with a throwback to an early 90’s rock scene, strong bass lines and groovy guitar riffs. It was evocative of a Manchester sound, still maintained the groups individuality. The Clause have got their own Birmingham sound; instead of the Haçienda, it’s Snobs.

I met guitarist Liam and frontman Pearce for a quick interview after the gig:

You’ve been on tour playing around the country. Which city would you say has been the best to play to so far?

Liam: Liverpool was probably the best – and I’m not just saying it ‘cause we’re here.

Pearce: They’ve all been sick but the crowd here tonight was brilliant.

Liam: Yeah, there was a great little atmosphere in there.

What has been your best achievement this year?

Liam: I’d say this tour probably, we’re literally in the middle of it. Coming to Liverpool and the room being full, you don’t really expect it.

Pearce: We’re doing a 650 capacity gig in Birmingham at the end of the month, and we’ve only been doing 100 capacity gigs for about a year and a half now.

Liam: Yeah, I can’t wait for it.

Their Birmingham gig, on the 21st December, is at the O2 Academy and sold out in just over a month.

What’s your favourite festival you’ve played this year?

Pearce: I think Isle of Wight.

Liam agreed: Isle of Wight was class. That was the biggest thing we’d ever done; we were all buzzing and we were playing on the first day. When we got there, there was no one around, but it filled up really quickly and there was a great atmosphere.

Have your musical influences changed?

Liam: Yeah, definitely. I think they’ve always been similar, but, as with everyone, you listen to more music as you go on, and you just get naturally inspired. We’re in quite a good phase where we’re happy with our influences.

Pearce: We literally take influences from bands from the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.

Liam: Yeah, I think definitely the big British sound, with the big guitar riffs, I’m definitely a fan.

Who are your biggest musical influences then?

Pearce: I love The Doors.

Liam: The [Rolling] Stones. We’re quite similar, we both love those bands, and they’re probably the two biggest influences for us. Even though you probably can’t hear it that much in the music.

The rest of the band – bassist Jonny and drummer Niall – joined the interview.

Do you have any specific songs you play before you go onstage?

Pearce: Columbia – Oasis. Mad tune. It just gets you gassed.

Jonny: It used to be Blue Monday, that was a big one.

Niall: The song we normally play before we go on is Red Right Hand.

Pearce: I found this tech mix of it.

If you could collaborate with any artist, dead or alive, who would you choose?

Pearce: Jim Morrison.

Liam: Probably the same for me yeah.

Jonny: I’ll throw a curve ball one in – Jack White. Love The White Stripes.

Pearce: I think we’d all agree on ABBA.

Their home city is an important influence on their music – from their writing on Birmingham nightlife to the nightclub Snobs featuring in their music video for ‘In My Element.’ So it was only apt for me to ask the band:

What’s your favourite thing about Birmingham?

Pearce: The people. I love the people there.

Jonny: I think it’s the atmosphere there as well.

Pearce: It always gets stick for being a shithole, but it’s actually not that much of a shithole.

Liam: It is a shithole, but it’s our shithole.

Pearce: Birmingham is class; don’t listen to what people say.

You can stream The Clause on Spotify here and buy tickets for their tour here