Home / Music / Artist Interviews / INTERVIEW: KOYO


Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Hey guys! We’ve been busy writing and recording lost of new material.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Before”?

It was the first song we wrote together since Seb joined the band and the first since we well and truly broke ourselves in from touring the first album so much. We’ve really refined our sound during this period and for us Before felt like the first fruit of that labour.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

Nothing in particular. I’d say this song is very much just a natural product of our environment and the sound of a band who have spent a hell of a lot of time together.

How was the recording and writing process?

It started out as a song that came together one afternoon while playing around on my acoustic. I then took it to the band and everyone just latched onto it really naturally and elevated it to that next level making it sound like us. We then played it live every night while on tour and really knocked it into shape. By the time we went into the studio we could play it with our eyes closed, which is kind of what we wanted. Most of the takes, especially the drums and the vocals were first takes.

I hear some 90s influences in your sound – how have bands like Nirvana and Radiohead shaped your writing?

Nirvana are definitely a huge influence. I’m very inspired by Kurt’s melodies. To be honest my strong point in the band is melody and that guy had it in spades. I’m also a huge fan of Mark Lanegan and Alice in Chains and stuff like that. I was born in the 90’s so it’s in my blood…Radiohead are definitely an influence, although perhaps not as much as people may think. Sonic Youth have been influencing us a lot recently as well.

Leeds is a vibrant city – what bands and venues should we be checking out there?

Brudenell Social Club, Hyde Park Book Club, Wharf Chambers and Belgrave Music Hall are all great venues. Lending Room is also a venue we love which doesn’t get enough shout-outs. In terms of bands we’re all big fans of Tall Talker and Chiyoda Ku. Both math-rock style bands well worth checking out. Some of the people we used to love when we first moved here who have now moved on, such as techno artist Ekhe. He just released an ep called Octopush which is well worth a listen.

Does the new single mean we can expect new material – how’s that coming along?

Absolutely. We’ve just finished recording loads of new stuff at Nave Studios round the corner from us. The plan is to be regularly releasing stuff as the year goes on, so loads of stuff to look forward to. If you like Before then you’ll definitely like what’s coming. I also expect they’ll be some big surprises for people along the way.

Any plans to hit the road?

Yes. They’ll be lots of gig announcements to come so keep your eyes peeled for that. One I can announce right now is a Leeds headline show on 11th April at Lending Room.

What else is happening next in KOYO’s world?

We’re playing Ramblin’ Man festival in the summer, as well as the Music Barn festival in Kettering on 22nd June. So if you’re in the midlands that’s a good place to catch us. We’re also doing Camden Rocks and we’re supporting Jambinai at the Garage in London on 6th June. Keep your eyes on our socials @koyoband and website (www.koyoband.com) to stay in the loop. We’ll be announcing things all year.

Watch here

Find KOYO now at koyoband.com, facebook.com/koyoband and twitter.com/koyoband now.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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