On Wednesday the 22nd of February, York’s Fulford Arms welcomes South London-based band INHEAVEN to its intimate yet growing gig scene. We were luckily able to catch up with lead vocalist and guitarist James Taylor ahead of the gig.
“We’re super excited”, he begins; not only will the performance be one of the band’s first in a month, but their first in York. But where do the band who’ve played shows alongside greats Jamie T, Circa Waves, and Sundara Karma originate? In a movie-esque manner, the four-piece met at a battle of the bands competition in London. The two rival bands gelled, and 3 years later they’re about to set off on a headline tour.
It hasn’t been all glitz and glamour, though. James stresses the “bedroom project” nature of the band, explaining that they’re “militant” and “don’t stop working”. What’s particularly refreshing is the DIY attitude they pursue; from graphics to fanzines, this is truly their project. Their brand is authentic, driven mostly by vocalist and bassist Chloe Little and Taylor, who produce all the band’s visual materials. “We never really let anyone else do anything,” Taylor admits. As a result, INHEAVEN have a strong identity. Their fanzines in particular help to create their own world.
It’s their hard work and go-getter attitude that’ve got the group to where they are today. Taylor describes how their single ‘Regeneration’ was a turning point; they made a website and wrote to hundreds of blogs. But it wasn’t until they received an email from Cult Records that they realised its implications. “This is something,” Taylor recounts.
Since then, the bedroom project has spiralled, yet Taylor insists their feet continue to be placed firmly on the ground. They continue to have drinks with fans, stick around after shows and keep a strong level of connection going. Taylor puts the band’s ethos bluntly: “No one likes a dick.”
This grounded attitude doesn’t imply that INHEAVEN don’t have big aspirations. When asked about their dream venue, the answer quickly followed: Brixton Academy. Not only has the venue hosted some of the biggest artists in the industry, but all four members of INHEAVEN grew up going to see their biggest inspirations control huge, densely packed crowds at the iconic venue. It’s a sense of nostalgia and dreams leftover from a young age that contribute to the band’s energy.
What artists does James admire? The Clash and Jamie T were both noted for their work ethic and attitude. “Jamie T stuck to his guns and did his own thing – that’s inspiring.” And that’s exactly what INHEAVEN plan to do.
With further tour dates around the country this month and upcoming tours with Blossoms and Circa Waves lined up, INHEAVEN are a band to watch.
INHEAVEN play York’s Fulford Arms on the 22nd of February with support from Freak and Crybaby. Tickets are available here.By Rachel Moore