Last night Lauren Mayberry, Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Jonny Scott of the band CHVRCHES stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live for an exhilarating mini-concert playing five songs off their latest album Love Is Dead including “Graffiti”, “Miracle”, “Get Out”, “Graves” and “Never Say Die”. Watch the off-air exclusives in the video below.
Sacramento’s alternative radio ALT 94.7 FM have announced a stacked lineup including CHVRCHES, Odesza, Bastille and more for their City of Trees music festival on Saturday, September 22, 2018. Enjoy a day filled with fun and music at Papa Murphy’s Park at Cal Expo in Sacramento, California.
Get your first chance at tickets with a pre-sale starting this Thursday, August 16th at 10 AM PDT using promo code “COTFEST” from City of Trees.
While in California for the ALT 98.7 Summer Camp Festival yesterday Lauren Mayberry revealed in an interview with the radio station that CHVRCHES would be returning to California to play the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, September 23, 2018. Today the band officially announced this gig with ticketing information for later this week.
Tickets go on sale this Friday, August 17th at 10 AM PDT from AXS.
CHVRCHES will be playing a Jimmy Kimmel outdoor mini-concert on August 14th in Los Angeles, California. The Jimmy Kimmel Live Concert Series has created one-of-a-kind concert experiences for many of today’s hottest musical acts. Don't miss Lauren Mayberry, Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Jonny Scott during their visit in support of Love Is Dead.
Click here to request free tickets.
The 2018 iHeartRadio Much Music Video Awards (MMVA) nominations have been announced including CHVRCHES for Best Rock/Alternative Artist or Group alongside Arcade Fire, Arkells, Foo Fighters, Imagine Dragons and Portugal the Man.
The 2018 iHeartRadio MMVA’s will be held on August 26, 2018 at Bell Media Queen Street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The show will air live on Much, CTV, MTV and additional Bell Media platforms.
A few weeks ago, CHVRCHES teased on their social channels that they had just recorded something secret and today it has been revealed as a new single called “Out Of My Head” featuring J-Pop sensation Kom_I of the band Wednesday Campanella. A fun back and forth between Lauren Mayberry and Kom_I ensue in their native languages on this track. Give it a spin below and let us know what you think.
Just six years ago the Glaswegian band CHVRCHES launched their way into the digital streaming world as a faceless new trio and now they’re touring the world in support of their third studio album. Ahead of CHVRCHES’ visit to our hometown of Chicago for Lollapalooza this week, we recently caught up with lead singer Lauren Mayberry to chat about their latest album Love Is Dead, touring, Chicago, fans and the future of the band.
LOVE IS DEAD
You three have always had a knack for marrying the dualities of dark and light in your music between the lyrics and the instrumentation. Love Is Dead continuing this trend by exploring the loss of empathy in mankind, seeking answers in dark times and how we can remain positive by pushing forward. A line from the track “ii” captures this theme rather well. “The truth exists somewhere between the dark and the light”. Is this something you’re conscious of when you’re writing or does this just come naturally?
Lauren Mayberry (LM): I think it's something that has always existed in the music we make and the way I write lyrics for this band. It's more about gut instinct than trying consciously to curate something in a certain way and that's the way I write best, I think - when I'm being honest and open. The two sides exist in everything in life I think - very few things are all good or all bad - so why wouldn't that be referenced in art?
One thing we find quite fun about your lyrics Lauren is the openness to interpret the songs in our own ways as you don’t often reveal in depth meanings. We also enjoyed the hidden “Easter eggs” as you once referred to them like the hidden telephone number in the music video for “Get Out” which revealed a spooky message from you when dialed. Have fans been connecting with and interpreting the new songs as you anticipated?
LM: That was something we really enjoyed planning in the run up to the album release. So many album roll outs are quite boring or abide by a certain set of "rules", and I don't think some musicians give their fanbase enough credit. People are smart and curious and want to go on a journey with you, so why not make a song or album release something fun and mysterious? It's been really great to start playing shows and see that the new songs have connected with people. All we can really do when we're writing is make sure that we are enjoying what we're making and it feels like it connects with us, but after that you really can't be sure. You can only really know when the music is out in the world and you get to a show, and people will either know the words or they won't.
Now that the Love Is Dead campaign is well under way how is everyone feeling on tour?
LM: We're good! The run we're on at the moment is pretty hefty but I think by the end of August we'll feel like we've achieved a lot. Often times when there's a day off on the website, it's not a day off in band life, whether that's some writing or recording or promo activities, but it's all part of the same thing. It's all about trying to get the music out there and to connect with people.
What are some of your favorite things about touring?
LM: So much of the 'business' side of being in a band is quite isolating so playing shows and experiencing music in the way you truly want to is what it's all about. So much time is spent talking about the band and the music as if they're these abstract entities, but ultimately, we all started making music because we wanted to express ourselves and connect with people and be part of a community, and you only really get that at live shows. So much of culture and entertainment is a really solitary pursuit, but live music is one of the few things that really brings people together in a communal way, and I think that's very powerful.
With all the grueling demands of touring, how do you keep motivated, healthy and pass the time while on the road?
LM: It's a constant learning process but the self-care aspect of touring is really important because if you don't take care of your brain or your body, the shows won't happen. The guys are very into Mario Kart and Fortnite at the moment, and I listen to a lot of podcasts / audiobooks and drag my little yoga mat around in my suitcase too. All that jumping around on stage is no joke...
Lauren, we really enjoyed and learned a lot from TYCI. Revisiting one of the podcast segments called Tales from Tour, what have you been listening to lately, what are you watching and what have you been reading?
LM: I love Getting Curious, Jonathan Van Ness from Queer Eye's podcast, and I have been watching The Handmaid's Tale, Pose and obviously Queer Eye. I just got Martin into Ali Wong and he has been quoting her Netflix specials a lot. I just started reading Sex and Rage by Eve Babitz and listening to the Louis Theroux audio book of The Call Of The Weird.
Lauren, we have loved watching the evolution of your stage presence from shy "awkward shuffle" as you once self-described it to a twirling, headbanging, fist pumping full on rock star! Do you do all your own choreography?
LM: We don't really choreograph the shows necessarily - it's been more about getting comfortable with how to physically express the songs and how best to communicate them with people. I love dance and movement and am obsessed with choreography videos on Instagram but it's not something I think I would ever be able to properly do, or something that really suits our music necessarily. I have learned that you'll never please people though. At the start of the band, we got absolutely crucified for my perceived lack of presence, but then when things do naturally grow and evolve, some people still don't like it. I'm never as comfortable on stage as I am when I am writing but all you can do is relax and be honest with each other and see what feels right. I think it would be boring if you never changed or evolved as a writer, a musician or a performer. They're all reflections of where you are at that moment, and it wouldn't make sense for that to stay the same.
Although the boys (Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Jonny Scott) are unavailable at the moment maybe you could attempt to answer the following three questions we have for them.
Iain and Martin, the gear junkies, this one is for you and all the gearheads out there. What new gear are you using on stage for this campaign?
LM: The Nintendo Switch...? Haha. I am not qualified to answer this question.
Lauren Mayberry Fans (LMF): Haha! We knew the comedian in you would eventually pop out during our chat.
CHVRCHES’ debut album The Bones of What You Believe must be close to going platinum and Martin once mentioned he would get his first tattoo when that day comes. If we had to guess that day might be coming soon and during this album campaign. Lauren, what would you recommend Martin get for his first tattoo?
LM: Jonny has lots of tattoos and is really creative with it so I think his advice would probably be the most helpful. If it was CHVRCHES related, that would be really cute...
The evolution of CHVRCHES’ live show continues with the addition of live drummer Jonny Scott and we’re super excited to see this during your festival setup at Lollapalooza. Jonny, how is life on the road with your pals from CHVRCHES going, are they playing nice or have you been part of any new band member hazing rituals that we so often hear about with other bands?
LM: We are very nice to Jonny, thank you very much! He played with Iain in a band called Unwinding Hours and was also in Martin's university band, Julia Thirteen, so we've all known him for a while and also been fans of his playing. He's truly one of the most versatile, expressive drummers I have ever seen and we're really lucky he wanted to come out on the road with us. He can also play the drum part to pretty much every Smashing Pumpkins song that ever was so I feel like that will be fun when it comes to headline tour soundcheck time...
LMF: Uh-oh, it sounds like we’re in the dog house for asking that one but in our defense, we meant it in a playful manner and great to hear that Jonny is such a good fit for the band. Smashing Pumpkins are a Chicago band by the way. If you can sneak some fans in for soundcheck while in Chicago for the headlining tour we would love to hear that.
What songs off Love Is Dead that have yet to be played live do you plan to add to future set lists during this album campaign?
LM: We're making plans for the headline shows in the fall at the moment and will definitely be adding a few more but if I tell you, it will ruin the surprise, you know? For festivals we wanted to add a handful of new things but not go too far because the sets are normally shorter and you don't know if you're necessarily playing to a captive audience so it's better to keep things open.
Chicago has been one of your most frequented touring cities. What are some your favorite places or things to do while visiting Chicago?
LM: It's a really cool city and we've been lucky enough to play there a lot. We have friends there so normally we just catch up with them but controversially I will say that deep dish pizza has been quite tricky for me to get my head around... It's like pizza-quiche.
LMF: Deep dish pizza is certainly interesting to say the least but arguably seems more geared towards our tourists in Chicago these days. When it comes to food we’re also known for our Chicago-style hot dogs, Italian beef sandwiches, Garrett’s popcorn and the original Rainbow Cone. If you ever need any food recommendations while in town please don’t hesitate to ask us.
Rumor has it that Matt Berninger of The National might make an appearance for "My Enemy" at your Lollapalooza performance. Can this be confirmed?
LM: I haven't heard anything about this so maybe you know something I don't...!
LMF: When asked during an episode of the ID10T podcast (at 1:17:00) earlier this year if you’re doing any shows together Matt alluded to the idea of performing “My Enemy” together by saying, “there’s a thing in Chicago, you’re there the day before were there and so I might try to come early.” Here’s hoping our refresher will spark some interest to make this come true before Matt has to run over to The National’s Lollapalooza aftershow at the Metro later that evening.
The FANCLVB mail box at headlining shows during the Every Open Eye tour was a hit! We realize that undertaking took loads of your time Lauren and wouldn’t be feasible to continue written replies to fans but will a previously mentioned PO Box be set up for fans to mail letters and gifts to in the future?
LM: We don't have any plans for that at the moment, no. We're going to be on the road so much in the next year or so that a PO Box wouldn't really be practical as no one would ever be there to open it!
Speaking of FANCLVB, during a recent Reddit AMA with the band it was mentioned that some fun activities and possibly a limited number of meet and greets might be planned for the future. Can you elaborate yet on those plans or what maybe in the works for fans during the upcoming headlining tour dates?
LM: It's something we've thought a lot about but there aren't specific plans at the moment. We're still adamant that any events we do are free and not paid for, whether those are through venues, radio stations, record stores, etc., but there isn't plans to re-up FANCLVB for this campaign. It was so fun but for the time being it seems like that will be something that lives as part of the Every Open Eye era.
It was mentioned in recent interview that some 40 songs were written during the Love Is Dead sessions. Is it possible that any of those tracks not on the album including those written with Dave Stewart could see the light of day on a vinyl B-side single or an LP extended edition in the future?
LM: We don't have any plans for new music at the moment but who knows where life will take us.
Not only do people love your original work but your cover songs are brilliant too! Any chance we might see a compilation album of your cover songs put together in the future?
LM: Most of the time those covers are things you do for radio stations or streaming services so those stations and companies have the rights to the songs, so any release would be done by them (EG: the R1 Live Lounge compilations).
A few weeks ago, both you and Martin teased in social media posts about album number four otherwise known as CHV4 for now. We realize your focus is on the current tour but have thoughts about CHV4 crossed your minds at any point and can you confirm plans to write a fourth album?
LM: We are always writing little things but there hasn't been any discussion about another album at this point.
You have had some amazing opportunities to collaborate with people like Haley Williams of Paramore and Matt Berninger of The National. If you could collaborate with anyone, who would you like to work with on a future project?
LM: We were so lucky to work with both Hayley and Matt. They are both such amazing songwriters and storytellers, and I really like that both collaborations came about in a very organic way, not something that was set up by a label to try to cross something over. Beyond that, I don't really know. My favourite people to collaborate with are Iain and Martin so I think I'll just focus on that for the time being.
Anything else coming up that you’re excited to share with your fans?
LM: We just recorded something secret that we can’t tell you about yet but it will all become clear soon. It’s fun to still get to be creative even when you’re on tour so we try to do that whenever we can, and we can't wait for you guys to hear what we made the other day...
As always, thank you very much for your time Lauren. CHVRCHES will be performing in Chicago at the Metro on Wednesday, August 1st and at Lollapalooza on Thursday, August 2nd. If you haven’t already, catch CHVRCHES on the Love Is Dead tour in a city near you during 2018-2019.
Lauren Mayberry, Iain Cook and Martin Doherty of the band CHVRCHES recently chatted with Lior Phillips on This Must Be the Gig podcast while in Lisbon, Portugal for their festival appearance at NOS Alive. This entertaining episode with the band touched on festivals, first concerts attended as kids, how they fill their days off while on tour, gender discussion, their secret first shows including a funny discussion with Lauren standing on a box, body language and more!
Click here to give episode #16 a listen and enjoy a fun-filled hour.