Arcane Roots Go Party

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Arcane Roots Go Party
An interview

“Too many choruses.” Andrew Groves states in a quiet, matter of fact voice before he looks up, breaking out in a wild grin, and repeats himself. This is the biggest issue he is facing as Arcane Roots work on the follow up to 2013’s Blood & Chemistry. The two people sitting to his right, Daryl Atkins and Adam Burton, mirror this wicked sense of disbelief. The three of them, originally from Surrey, have toured the stadiums and arenas of Europe, supporting the best of British. But, as they sit on a mishmash of garden furniture backstage at 2000 Trees festival, you wouldn’t know it. Animated, but unassuming, Andrew answers the bulk of my questions as well as comparing the band to a really good plumber, and a wicked ice cream man. Daryl expands on certain ideas with deliberate craft while Adam, attentive to the conversation, nods in agreement throughout. Arcane Roots are a band that thinks differently, but in the same way.

Since the release of Blood & Chemistry, Arcane Roots haven’t stopped. You get the impression that they’ve already got a lifetime worth of stories to tell but as they succinctly describe it as having “done some really great things”, these stories must still seem like a fairytale. Later on they share disbelief that people would care about “songs they made on a little island on the Thames…that were written on my bedroom floor” which aids that assumption. It’s not what’s behind the band that proves the most exciting topic of conversation though. It’s that sprawling, endless horizon that is their future.

The first step forward is new single ‘Over & Over’, which “is a direct punch back to everything we felt about Blood & Chemistry.” The band wanted it to be the best of what they’ve learnt from a summer of support tours and festival performances and the reception it gets when they play to a very large mainstage crowd later that day suggest mission accomplished. Despite the brilliant and physical reaction, ‘Over & Over’ is unlikely to make it onto album two. “We’ve got more than enough before that needs to happen.”

With a million demos down and loads of choruses floating about, Arcane Roots are trying something new. Blood & Chemistry was written with a song for every slot. ‘Energy is Never Lost…’ was written as track one, ‘Slow’ as track seven and so forth. This time they want to say “ here’s fifty songs, what’s the best out of these? How do we streamline this down to twelve incredible songs.”

The album is still more idea than actuality, but Arcane Roots know what they want from it.

“Blood & Chemistry is really majestic and we want this to be really direct and aggressive in a forward way. Arcane Roots go party. I don’t want anything on it that doesn’t have an action, a feeling or something we can incorporate into the live show. It’s got the biggest choruses we’ve ever done and the biggest riffs. It’s a chorus, then a thing, then a bit. It’ll have purpose.”

These wants are borne out of two things. Firstly, as a reaction to their debut “The first album was difficult for us, we had to decide what band we wanted to be, It was very reliving to finish, because I could then write whatever I wanted.” Secondly, their long-term goals. “We knew we wanted to be a career band” are among the first words we exchange and later on desires to become an arena band are made perfectly clear. Not for fame, or fortune, but a “want to be the best musicians we can be, to put on the best shows we can and to have the weight as a band to make our artwork come to life.” That’s what the best arena bands do and Arcane Roots want to join the elite. At the moment, however, it’s done with Sellotape.

I know what you’re thinking. You’ve got that feeling in the pit of your stomach that Arcane Roots are going to mellow out, soften their edges, sell out. Over & Over has a shark on the artwork for goodness sake. The jumping of it, is almost predestined.

Stop.

“Everything we’ve done, we’ve done for the right reasons. As songwriters, as musicians and morally,” explains Andrew.

Arcane Roots care. It’s a phrase that’s uttered countless times during our time together, as a yard stick to explain why they make the decisions they do. At the end of the day it’s about creating a connection.

“Before this band, we played half an hour of fiddly stuff. That stuff is easy. To actually write something that’s powerful…” The sentence isn’t finished, but the intent is clear.

Arcane Roots have a small list of wants from their music. They want to rock out, to cause goosebumps. They want you to know they genuinely care about their songs, that they enjoy playing them. Oh. And they want to blow you away.

Next summer, the Sellotape comes away.

 

 

There is a review of 2000 Trees festival, which includes Arcane Roots here.

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~ by justdip on 31/07/2014.

One Response to “Arcane Roots Go Party”

  1. […] can read what to expect from Arcane Roots’ new album here, as well as a review of last year’s […]

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