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Bombay Bicycle Club interview

18 August 2006

Winners of this year's Road To V contest, Bombay Bicycle Club are all still in school, despite having a mature sound in the style of Editors. After playing easily the biggest shows of their lives, VF caught up with the band...

Virtual Festivals. You’ve just played the Channel 4 Stage at V Festival. Any good?
Suren: “Yeah, it was pretty amazing and the set absolutely flew by. We only played five songs, but we’ve got loads more in the bag so hopefully we’ll be back one day.”

VF: Was it tricky to select just a few songs?
Jamie: “No, it was a pretty natural selection actually. We’ve got a few slower songs but we weren’t going to play anything too slow. It would be a bit boring for the crowd – especially with the weather the way it was.”

VF: I missed the start of your set due to a serious downpour. Did you get that here too?
Jamie: “Yeah, as soon as we went on it started raining torrentially, but as the show went on the sun came out and the crowd got bigger, so it wasn’t too bad.”

VF: Did you lose a lot of the crowd?
Jamie: “No they stayed and braved it out, which was quite impressive.”

VF: How did you guys get together?
Jack: “Well this is only our tenth gig. We’ve been together for about a year. We only really got together because we had to do an assembly at school. We started taking it seriously about a month ago.”

VF: Did you always think you had the potential to make it?
Jack: “Not at the beginning, but after we recorded our demo and it got a really good reception I thought maybe these songs could take us places. Since then I haven’t really thought about, it’s just happened, and it’s been incredible.”

VF: What were your emotions being on stage today?
Ed: “Beforehand I was really scared but as soon as I got on stage I didn’t really think about it anymore. There was a great atmosphere in the crowd and we really buzzed off that.”

VF: You had loads of support out there. Banners, flags, t-shirts…
Jamie: “Yeah, it felt pretty good. They’re all our friends and they’ve given us great support by making banners and writing BBC on their t-shirts. They’ve been really cool.”   

VF: How did your Road To V journey begin?
Suren: “Jamie put us forward a while ago and I don’t think he even told us. We got a message through our MySpace and we thought it was a prank at first. It turned out to be true, so we did the gig at Carling Academy and that went well and now here we are.”

VF: Did you always think you could win?
Suren: “No, not really. I suppose when we got down to the last four I thought we had a chance, but we were against The Holloways and Keith, who are both pretty good so it was still a shock to win.”

VF: Did you see yourselves on TV?
Jamie: “I was actually on a rugby tour for the gig, but I saw the last four show when we won. We were initially a bit shocked and quiet about the whole thing but as we’ve done more interviews it’s all flowed a bit more.”

VF: What’s next for you?
Jamie: "There is a lot of industry interest but seeing as we’ve got two more years left in school we’ve got to put it all on hold for a while - because they all want us to leave school!"

VF: Surely any 17-year-old's dream! Aren't you tempted?
Jamie: "Umm, no, not yet. We’ve got another two years and then we’ve got to think about university, so who knows. I want to go to uni, I don’t know about these lot."
Jack: "I think Jamie wants to be a big banker or a business man or something. The rest of us are pretty lazy."

VF: Did you all meet at school?
Jack: "Yes. Me and Jamie were good mates and then we met the others. Suren was the best jazz drummer in school so we got him in and Ed came a bit later. Ed’s only been playing bass for six months."

VF: So do you feel like proper rock stars now?
Ed: "Performing on that stage and just being a band at V Festival feels really, really surreal. Seriously. You don’t actually stop and talk with the bands, but they all just mingle about backstage and get carted around. Yeah, we’ve felt like proper rock stars today." 

- Click here to discuss this on the Festival Forums!
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Article by: Ross Purdie

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