Since the release of their debut EP “Leaflings” back in 2012, Oxford’s Glass Animals have been busy racking up serious kudos, including collaborating with arguably the worlds hippest producer for the release of their debut album “Zaba”. XYZ’s Jimmy Volts caught up with frontman Dave Bayley to talk through one of the most impressive debuts of 2014.
Glass Animals are just heading into Maida Vale studios for a recording session when we catch up with their ever-polite (not-to-mention highly educated) singer. So how does it feel to be releasing their LP this month? “Quite scary really. I feel like a mother does when sending her kid off to university or something like that. It’s hard to know what’s gonna happen. I hope people like it!”
For the uninitiated, Glass Animals’ sound is as smooth and flowing as their name suggests. Brimming with thick textures, delicately intricate rhythms and atmospheric splendour. So how was the recording process? “Pretty smooth actually. All of the songs started off in my bedroom and were quite developed before getting into the studio to record it all properly. I didn’t listen to any other music for about two months prior to recording, which hopefully has led to a more unique sound. Perhaps not though (he laughs).” Bayley’s modesty belies his obvious talent. GA’s initial material was so strong that they quickly attracted the attention of Paul Epworth, one of the UKs most prolific producers (Adele, Florence and Plan B to name but a few), who decided to put their LP out on his own label. So how did this relationship come about? “We saw his name on the guest list for one of our London shows and didn’t think much of it. After all, it’s a common name. But sure enough, it was him. He came up to us afterwards and we went out, had drinks, talked about music and our love of Flying Lotus and had a great time! He’s probably one of the busiest people on earth, so it was great having him as a mentor.”
Speaking of busy, Glass Animals are about to hit up the UK festival scene, including an appearance at the Great Escape this month. So how are they feeling about it? “We’re excited! We played last year and it was wicked fun. It’s always tricky with festivals because you get onstage without a soundcheck but those gigs are often the best. You get a good adrenaline rush from not knowing what’s going to happen.” If there’s one thing we can be sure of, it’s that Glass Animals are ‘ones to watch’ at this year’s Great Escape festivities. If you’re a wristband holder, be sure to catch them. You will certainly not be disappointed.
Glass Animals’ debut album “Zaba” is out June 9 on Wolf Tone Records. Don’t miss out on their show at The Great Escape Festival this month – for tickets visit the official festival website, thegreatescapefestival.com.
For more about the band visit glass-animals.tumblr.com
Words by Jimmy Volts