The Real Ding
GET TO KNOW: The Arthurs
After spending the last few months unveiling a fresh and vibrant selection of alt-rock stunner, Dutch outfit The Arthurs recently returned to deliver their eagerly-anticipated new album 'Glass'.
With influences that include The Pixies, The Doors, The Smiths and Nirvana, 'Glass' is the perfect coupling of retro grunge vibes and a more contemporary edge. Mixing soft and breezy compositions with raw and blistering energy, the group are making a bold statement with this new collection.
So with the new album out now, we sat down with them to find out more about their origins and influences over the years.
What was the first instrument you learned to play?
That must have been my first ever Yamaha electric guitar, back in 2000!
What was the first album you remember owning?
That must have been Tour of Duty volume 1. When I was a kid, I really liked the “Paint it Black” intro tune of that television series. That particular song wasn’t on the album and I remember feeling a bit disappointed about that. But there are some other great artists on that record, all sixties stuff, like Marvin Gaye, Steppenwolf, Fleetwood Mac, Them with Van Morrison, Norman Greenbaum and, of course, The Doors. Not too bad to get introduced to real good music at such a young age.
Did you ever form a band when you were younger and if so, what did they sound like?
I tried being a one-man band around the age of 8. I had a keyboard, this thing in a sort of guitar shape, with a drum machine in it, and I tried to copy that organ sound of The Doors “In Concert” record that I was listening to a lot at that time. I couldn’t play the thing at all. I was just goofing around, pretending to be Jim Morrison with a keyboard or something, so I think it sounded real crappy. But hey, at least I tried haha.
What is a song you wish you had written yourself?
Difficult question. There are a ton of songs I wish I wrote. But to name a few that come to my mind right now, some songs I listened to lately: “Range Life” by Pavement, “Instant Street” by dEUS, “Some Sweet Day” by Sparklehorse, “Electrolite” by R.E.M. , “Happiness” by Elliott Smith, “How Can We Hang on to a Dream?” by Tim Hardin, “The W.A.S.P. (Texas Radio and the Big Beat)” by The Doors, “Very Ape” by Nirvana, “Paint A Vulgar Picture” by The Smiths, “Phantasmagoria in Two” by Tim Buckley, “Knives Out” by Radiohead, “No.13 Baby” by the Pixies, “Gut Feeling” by Devo, “Torn and Frayed” by the Rolling Stones, “A Day in a Life” by the Beatles. Damn, I can go on for hours, there are a lot of beautiful, great songs written by a lot of great artists.
What has been the most thrilling moment about creating your own music?
Good question. When I write a song, I record them as full instrumental demos, so with drums, keys, bass, guitars and even lead guitars. When the first results of hearing a demo tape are like “wow, I just can’t wait to record that song with the band or play it live with the boys and girls”, I know it’s good. It’s a magical thing; the translation of these tunes and words that are going around in your brain and eventually really hearing them on tape for the first time.
And what about the most frustrating part?
The music industry sometimes is really difficult. Especially when you do it all D.I.Y., like I do. It’s a tough industry and you have to work really, really hard and have a lot of patience. Even to get a gig sometimes for Christ sake! It sometimes takes ages when a venue responds to your emails, if they respond at all. But I think we’re doing quite well. We’re performing quite often and have already seen some beautiful stages and festivals, especially here in The Netherlands. I think that also says something about the quality of our music and also our live performances.
Which artist would you most love to share a stage with?
There are a lot of bands that I really like that are not around anymore. They’re disbanded or the guys are dead. I really do like The Pixies, Radiohead and the Strokes for example and fortunately they are still around, so it would be great if we can someday share a stage with these guys. Besides that, we’re also very honoured to share the stage with the legendary Fischer-Z from the UK in November in this great venue called De Boerderij, here in The Netherlands. We really look forward to that too!
Where do you see yourself in five years time?
I hope the world still exists haha. I hope I will still be making music. I still have a lot of plans and ambitions. But first, I will release another record of my (unfortunately now disbanded) side project called Transtec. I am really proud of that forthcoming record. It’s a completely different thing, an electro rock project. Quite weird stuff, but very authentic and I think there are some beautiful, really cool tracks on this second “Transtec” album. We will release it somewhere later this year I guess.
I also hope that The Arthurs will be known by a larger audience. I think the music really deserves it and I hope we will make a couple of other great records together in the next five years. Playing big festivals like Glastonbury or Reading Festival in your country would be great too! I really believe we can do that. I’m sure that we can impress big audiences at big festivals, just like we did in our own country at Westerpop in 2019 for example. There’s so much left to do. I think the best is still yet to come!
The Arthurs' new album 'Glass' is available to stream and download now. Check it out in full below.