Riding off the success of their latest single ‘Eleanor’, which has been playlisted by BBC Radio 2, Liverpool’s rock n’ roll answer to a Mariachi band Red Rum Club are in the midst of something truly awe-inspiring with the imminent arrival of their upcoming full-length, ‘The Hollow Of Humdrum’.
The band, in many respects, have acted as our saviours during these trying times with their uplifting, rollicking imbued anthems perfect for chilling out with a few beers and heck, stick on their debut album ’Matador’ and Glastonbury will come to you.
The Lowdown recently had the pleasure of speaking with the group’s frontman Fran Doran about their new single, what we can expect from their forthcoming album and their thoughts on a world with no live shows.
We believe a huge congratulations are in order for your BBC Radio 2 playlisting of ‘Eleanor’! What does this mean to you as a band?
"Yeah, we are over the moon to be on the playlist, it could not have come at a better time either. With no gigs for the foreseeable future we are made up to be having success on another platform. We were hoping it would take off on radio, we have had great spot plays on 6 Music before but this is just next level. We are really pleased to have made that progression at such a crucial time- it’s been a big boost to our album campaign."
Are you still pinching yourself just a little bit?
"It is mad like; we get texts all the time from people who are just as made up as we are to hear it on the radio. We have got a really supportive following and I think they feel our successes as much as we do, so it’s really nice being able to enjoy it with everyone. It’s just a really positive vibe at the moment and long may it continue (fingers crossed)."
We read somewhere that the song is written about someone close to you that suffers from mental health issues. Why did it feel so important to tackle this experience within the lyrics?
"The song is essentially a positive track but it has a message that people can relate to- especially if they’ve experienced the same issues. It was a bit of a tightrope with the track being biographical, some of the lyrics were taken out and made less personal so that it could help/relate to the masses rather than just one person. It’s ultimately a catchy summer love song, but on another level it also has a reassuring message."
The track is the first single from your upcoming album, ‘The Hollow Of Humdrum’. What made you guys choose this track to lead the way?
"We really wanted a summer release with “Eleanor”, as soon as we recorded it we kept imagining people in the garden dancing to it. It’s a nice positive song to introduce the album too, just made sense really- I’d like to think we made a good choice."
What makes the new album an improvement on past releases?
"To us it just feels like the next step, I’d say it’s quite different. The music on this album is a lot more varied, we have even got a couple of stripped back songs on this record which you might not expect. I think recording ‘Matador’ has shown us what was on offer in regards to the studio and what we can do with it. We took that more into consideration this time around and I think the key difference between the two is that the first album was written for the stage, whereas this was definitely written for the studio."
And how have current events changed the way in which you write?
I wouldn’t say there’s been too much of a change, we can still bounce ideas off each other even though we’ve had to keep our distance. It’s been strange not spending days together writing, but we’ve managed. We’ve been able to get together again since and it’s been good playing together, so I don’t think it’s made too much impact.
Let’s talk about the trumpet for a moment. What made you guys want to have an instrument like this in your music?
"It kind of came about by chance, the band were writing a lot of cinematic sounding music at the time and wanted some more orchestral elements to the songs. I bumped into Mike in the pub and when I asked how the band was, he explained that they were thinking about adding some brass and strings to the sound. I brought up that I played trumpet and since that first practice together none of us have looked back."
It really is the finishing touch to your sound. Is it what makes Red Rum Club so special?
"It is unique, and the finishing touch is probably the best way to describe it. It’s allowed us to add a different dimension to the music we write that other bands may not cater for. It’s been funny seeing people waving inflatable trumpets at gigs - it’s definitely become a bit of a symbol."
Your band’s name is without doubt one of the best out there! How did it come about?
"A lot of people think it’s to do with the horse, but it’s actually from “The Shining”. We were aiming for a big cinematic sound when we came up with it, so we wanted a movie reference in there- we’re glad you like it."
So, what does the future look like for you guys? Let’s say… the next five years?
"We’re just looking forward to getting the album out and getting to play it live. Hard to look past that but if it’s anything like the last five years we really can’t complain. It’s been great to get to this point, so anything more is just a bonus!"
How differently will you view playing in a band, if live music never fully makes a return?
"It would be a strange world like, hard to imagine really. I really hope it does return but if it doesn't, we’ll just have to adapt. These things can’t be helped, and I think the lockdown has helped us all realise that there are other ways to get your music out there. We’ll see what happens, but we’re looking forward to the day we get the green light to get back out there again - I’m sure it’ll all work out."
Listen to 'Eleanor' HERE
Pre-order 'The Hollow Of Humdrum' HERE
INTERVIEW BY ALISTER ROSS