Little Suspicions’ lifespan is just a year old. It is fair to say that the past year has been the most eventful in recent history, and for a young band to have formed and made it through all of the chaos is rather impressive. Despite these dramatic events, it is clear the band have bonded very closely.
Little Suspicions are from the Medway and clearly distinct themselves from calling themselves a London band, bassist, Craig Barden, tells me. By not tagging themselves as a London band, the band aren’t subservient to cliches that some southern bands use to make them sound appealing.
The four-piece take their style and sound very seriously. Their latest single, ‘Limes’ is a wedge taken from the slice of 60’s soundscapes, a fit between Scott Walker and Lee Hazlewood with nods to west-coast psychedelia. The 60s isn’t the only thing present in ‘Limes’ with strong hints to the Last Shadow Puppets and Humbug era Arctic Monkeys. The band are very aware of the Shadow Puppets comparison, but they believe that’s quite an easy thing to do.
“I’m not going to make [Moritz] sing it any differently just because it sounds a bit like something else.”
“We’re not just trying to be a recreation of the [Last] Shadow Puppets, we’re just trying to keep it our own thing. I agree that our first single [Wasting All My Time] was a bit more Turner than we would have liked, but it still sounded great. I’m not going to make [Moritz] sing it any differently just because it sounds a bit like something else. I don’t want to take that part of the performance away.” Joey says very openly. Craig adds “I think we just take bits from everywhere, like the 60s, 70s and even the 80s to create our own sound, not basically repeat things.
Speaking in more depth about their sound, Joey says “it was guitarist Conor Toner who brought in the Scott Walker reference. He was the real force behind that and it has a really cool Morricone sound to it like something from a Spaghetti Western”. Craig adds “It is interesting that you pick up on the Lee Hazlewood influence. We’re massive fans of his, in particular the album he did with Nancy Sinatra (Some Velvet Morning).
“We talked to our mixer and said could you just Phil Spector it up please and he did a great job of it.”
We like that stuff because it created a wall of sound and it was all done in one take, which is quite incredible really. I think that is something we try to create. When you listen to it [Limes] the sound is very layered. Joey seconds that saying “We talked to our mixer and said could you just Phil Spector it up please and he did a great job of it.”
These ferocious riffs, synchronised by harmonics, give “Limes” an alluring romanticism that takes the raw edge off, adding a layer of softness. The band’s love affair with the 60s is much more than the decade’s music. Style and fashion are apparent too. As the band joke about lead vocalist, the “B-Tec John Lennon” Moritz Meyns, who, to be tongue in cheek, has “ hair down to his knees”. Joey, jokes that “he gets that sort of thing all the time”.
Two singles, so far, comprise their catalogue; the decision to do single by single as opposed to an EP did raise an eyebrow. It’s always easier to sit and work on a single for a couple a months, get it mixed and get it out than to work on an album. Firstly, we’ll need a label who will help us out while we slug away for six months in a studio doing an album.
We’ve all got jobs, so the easiest way for us to work would be to release music in bitesize chunks. Craig follows up by saying: “We did singles first to learn about each other’s working styles and methods. I think we could apply that in future in an EP environment and it was different from my previous band where we did EPs all the time.
Regarding the success of “Limes” and the future, the Little Suspicions are insistent that more singles are the way forward.
“To get people to listen to your album as a band starting out is difficult. If you do singles, you keep knocking on the door of the music industry. It’s like Hello, we’re here!
“Limes” by Little Suspicions is available on Spotify here
Written by and submitted for Lewis Oxley