Mike Caulfield 13/11/2006
God is In the TV meets Bureau.
Manchester electro/ indie five-piece and bright young hopes, Bureau, have been exciting crowds and inspiring the locals to find their dancing shoes for the past few months. Having recently released their soon to be sold out debut single through High Voltage Sounds and with a series of excitable live radio sessions behind them, it's time we learnt a little more about them from their magnetic front man Theo Hutchcraft.
First off how are you, how was the recent 6music session?
(Theo) Absolutely surreal, it only started to sink in when we were playing
that there could potentially be thousands of ears twitching. A really weird feeling...
Mr Riley was a great guy too and the whole session sounded fantastic!
How did you all come together as a group?
Me (Theo), Adam and Scott all met around Christmas time last year outside a nightclub in the rain when we were all extremely drunk. We talked, stumbled, murmured and some how created the Bureau ideal. After coming to a common ground with influences and ideas for the sound of the band we began writing furiously. The songs went up on the Internet when there were only
3 of us and we were getting asked to do gigs all over the place! Jamie and Flick joined the Bureau team in April 2006 and we began practicing and writing together in time for our first gig in May.
What quality does each of you bring to the Bureau sound?
Everyone's influences and musical backgrounds are so diverse that we all bring something unique and exciting. Most of the band plays multiple instruments too and so the song writing process can tend to get carried away. Which is only a good thing really.
You have built up a reputation as a must see live act, what can people expect from one of your live shows?
They can expect to feel like the odd one out if they don't bring their dancing shoes! At our recent gigs people have been getting rather carried away with the funk...
It would be good to make people able to close their eyes and feel as though they're inside a nightclub (unless we're playing in one, in which case ignore that). That's what we try to create both with our songs and the atmosphere.
Expect copious amounts of intoxication, dancing, shouting, screaming, climbing, jumping and a whole host of other such rock and roll activities.
How does the song writing process work within Bureau, do you write individually, presenting the group with a near-finished product, or is it more of a collaborative process?
Our song writing is constantly evolving as we are coming to find our 'sound'. In the very early days, the duties were shared out between Adam and myself. That was mainly due to time and the fact that we wanted our stuff to be ready as soon as possible. It's much more exciting for all of us these days because we are experimenting with writing songs in different ways and everyone has a big input.
Your sound is considered to be a mix of retro synth pop and indie, how conscious are you of your influences when it comes to writing a song?
In the beginning, we were quite conscience because we had to establish common interests and try to create music we all loved. Now it's not so apparent now because most of the time we write songs to sound like "Bureau" songs and always compare to the sound we are trying to create.
Whenever I get stuck lyrically or melodically I tend to look towards
The Three for inspiration...Prince, Lloyd Cole, Shane McGowan. Three of the greatest songwriters of all time. A lot of my early inspiration, which is still apparent today, comes from hip-hop too.
There are so many lyrical geniuses that get overlooked because they're 'hip-hop'. It's mainly music snobs who do the 'overlooking' though. Jehst, Eminem, Skinnyman, Scorzayzee, Nas - the list goes on...
What message do you want to convey with your music?
We just want to make music for people to dance too. It's something pretty special if you can make people dance because most of the time people are self-conscious about it. Just dance!
Where do you feel you fit into the Manchester music scene and what are your thoughts on it?
It gets more exciting every week. It's only when you sit back and look at it that you realise there is so much going on. It's just about to have a second coming and explode into everyone's ears and faces once more. 'Madchester' will be only a very distant memory soon. There's so much diversity in the talent here, which is fantastic because it means there won't be any pigeonholing. Just you all wait and see....
Which bands/artists are you currently listening too?
I tend to listen to a lot of rockabilly, blues and ska but Prince gets a daily religious airing. I listen to a lot of electro and breaks too. As far as new bands go, I recently discovered that The Horrors were much more than eye candy for girls and are actually pretty good. Also I've been listening to lots of Matisyahu, its amazing stuff!
Having achieved a lot for a group that have been together for a short amount of time, what's next for Bureau?
More smash hits.
So much has happened for us that we can't really keep up! I think those are goals everyone should strive for though.
Thanks for your time and keep up all the good work.