You Me At Six
Sophie Appleton 10/11/2008
Still buzzing from the release of their first album Take Off Your Colours, You Me At Six head out on their first headlining tour. With a strong following of fans and some intoxicatingly catchy songs, this band from Surrey is set to make their mark on the Pop/Rock scene. Although still only in their late teens You Me At Six have already toured with the likes of New Found Glory, Paramore and Enter Shikari and are currently preparing to share the stage with Fall Out Boy. But tonight the boys make it evident they are prepared to match their American counterparts as they perform at the Rescue Rooms, Nottingham.
I sat down with Matt Barnes (Bass) and Dan Flint (Drums) to talk critics, clothes and Kerrang.
How's the tour going so far?
It couldn't have gone better, the first few days are usually a bit roapy but we've had a perfect start to the tour, its been awesome.
Which one have you enjoyed most so far?
I'd say the first night, but that's because it had a really big stage, and I love massive stages cos you can just like run around, there's the whole first night excitement as well.
You've toured with some amazing bands, who was your favourite?
I'd say new found glory, they've been my favourite band since I was like 13.
I'd say, as much as I'm not really a fan of Angels and Airwaves, the opportunity to play at the venues we were playing was really fun.
Did you find Tom arrogant?
We didn't really talk to him that much, he kept himself to himself, when we did talk to him, he seemed like a nice guy, really chilled out, really funny. He was always joking around.
How do you feel being compared to bands like fall out boy?
Very flattered, although I'm not sure were as good as them.
When you write, do you take influences from any other bands?
We write how we want You Me At Six to sound, the way to write songs isn't to say hey I'm going to start a band and were going to sound like Paramore, because there already is a Paramore. Obviously you can have influences, but you have to take it and make it your own, like add your own individual twist. I don't think there's a band that I could say we really sound like, at least there's no British band doing what we're doing at the minute.
What kind of music do you listen to?
We listen to a lot of pop rock, Jimmy eat word Biffy Clyro, and obviously like New Found Glory, Blink 182, Taking back Sunday.
How old were you when you realised you wanted to be in a band?
I've wanted to be in a band all my life, except when I was younger I wanted to be a policeman, but I think everyone when they're younger wants to be a policeman. But I think I knew I wanted to be in a band by the age of 13, that's when I started playing bass anyway, I had a tiny little 3 quarter size bass, which I still have!
Are your songs based on personal experiences?
Josh writes the lyrics, so he writes about experiences he had as a 15 year old kid and the later songs are all about him as an 18 year old. He doesn't write about anything he doesn't know about. If you listen to the lyrics, you can pretty much see what the songs are about, for example you can kind of tell what 'Save it for the bedroom' is about, girls which kind of, well you know put themselves out there.
Do you have a favourite song on the album? Or a song that's more personal to you?
It changes every day but I'd say 'Jealous minds.'
I love playing 'You've made your bed,' I'm sure we can all relate to that, I can relate to that song quite recently shall we say.
You owe your fame to websites like Myspace, do you feel the internet has limited or benefited your career?
Especially in the early days, you can basically say the band wouldn't be where it is without the likes of Myspace, its such a good tool for getting your music out there. This is actually the only tour we've done when we've had an album out. Everything else is purely based on people listening to us on Myspace, that's how most people found us.
As our band grows it's becoming less and less important because we've got a solid fanbase.
Do you think the internet's limiting you now, with all the downloads?
It's a pain in the arse when people download CDs but it happens.
I think everyone does it and the kids who like our music probably don't have the money to buy our CD, so you can see why people do it.
I noticed you were listed on the drop dead website is that something you endorse?
It's a strange one because we're friends with him and we were on drop dead at the very start, were not sure why because it seems to include much heavier bands but I think it was like I'll help you out if you help me out.
Why are you called You Me At Six?
We always get asked this, its such a bad story, basically Matt and Josh were talking to each other about when they were going to meet up and one was like “Hey you me at six”. We had our first gig where we played to literally about three people, who were probably our parents, but we needed a name for the flyer, so we just used that and decided to change it later, I guess it just stuck.
Is there a venue you'd like to play that you haven't already?
I really want to play where Jay Z and Linkin played, I think it's in New York.
Or there's a chain in America called The House of Blues, I'd love to play there, I think then we'd know we'd cracked America, we'll be like ok we can quit now.
What do you get up to when you're on tour?
We party a hell of a lot.
And when you're not on tour?
We party a hell of a lot!
What was it like to be on the front of kerrang?
It was crazy, we'd go into petrol stations and move copies of it the front of the shelves
My mum woke me up at like ten o'clock in the morning, runs in my room like “I've got it I've got it!” she was more excited than me.
Matt, did you design the clothing range yourself?
I worked with a few designers, its wicked to do when your at home, when everyone else is bored, its like I've got something to do.
Fan: I think Matt should start paying me to wear his clothes.
Matt: The others complain they never get anything.
Dan: Mate, I'm not buying you're clothes they're terrible!
How do you respond to the “emo” title?
Obviously all songs are “emotional”, it's a strange one because the title “emo” has so much bad press. I think adults just don't get it. I don't think we get much of the blame but bands like My Chemical Romance were held responsible for a teenage suicide, it's not their fault.
There's no lyrics in their songs that tell young people to kill themselves. Its just angry parents looking for someone to blame.
How do you respond to critics?
They can slate us if they want but at the end of the day as long as more people like us than hate us it's fine.
New Found Glory actually said to us, 'look not everyone's going to like you but you've got to ignore them.' Usually it's a review by someone who just doesn't like that type of music, and honestly we do not give two shits.
What advice would you give to young musicians trying to get into the business?
Just don't give up. The first gigs we did we must have played to collectively 3-7 people a night, we were getting the Megabus to Wales with all our equipment, walk a mile to the venue and played to 3 people for free, it sucked.
If you love doing it that much, just keep writing, it's going to happen.