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Hailing from Stoke, Delamere are being initiated into the Manchester music scene with their recent signing to local label Scruff of the Neck. Lead singer and guitarist James “Fitch” Fitchford talks to Big Issue North ahead of their single launch party at Manchester Academy, 10 Oct. They also play Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield the following week.

How would you describe your sound for the uninitiated?
Uplifting, synth-ridden, guitar-esque indie bangers

What does it mean to you to sign with Scruff of the Neck records?
It’s given us all more drive definitely. With specific dates of releases and deadlines being introduced we’ve all naturally dug in! We’re a band that can get lost in trying to create things a certain way and, without someone cracking the whip, the time this can take can just sneak up on you.

Having created a buzz around your EP do you feel the pressure of expectation for a dazzling debut LP?
We were chuffed with the response the EP received and I like to think it got a few more heads pointing our way. To be honest we’re all looking forward to the album process. Right now we write songs actively thinking of them as singles, where the album actually gives us the opportunity to write tracks a little different – tracks we may never play live – and go a little wild or even totally stripped back.

What are your hopes for your debut album and when can we expect it?

First and foremost we hope that we’re proud of it. I’m sure we will be as we all work hard. We wouldn’t expect anything good to come from something that we don’t hold in high regard ourselves. I get happy from seeing positive blog reviews. If we see a few nice comments and get a couple of decent reviews, then we know we’ve done all right. We’re aiming for the album to be released in April next year.

There’s a growing music scene in Stoke. What’s it like to be a band there at the moment?
It can be quite a tough gig, to be totally honest! There are plenty of good bands, but at times it can feel like a lot of the people there don’t care too much for live music. For example, we supported Peace at a venue in Stoke and it drew nearly no one in when they were selling out dates in other cities. But to be fair, there’s been a few that couldn’t do it on a cold Monday night in Stoke.

Is it less important for bands to be based in a big music city in the digital age?
I don’t really know. I think there’s arguments for both sides. For example if Michael Jackson was a young lad living in Skegness, 2015, making bangers in his bedroom and uploading them to BBC Introducing, you know you’ll be listening to it on Radio 1 as you’re driving home. Whereas if you took bands like Red Hot Chili Peppers, Oasis and The Strokes, they built huge followings based on live performances in LA, Manchester and New York! If they dropped a track on the internet with no following, would they get the same recognition? I wouldn’t think so. A scene is always important as that’s what major labels will look to convert into money, but if you shit pure gold, you’ll get there just as quick, even if your living in a shed at the bottom of your nan’s garden.

Antonia Charlesworth

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