Rudimental Talks Tour Life and New Single “These Days”

Rudimental Talks Tour Life and New Single “These Days”

The British band talks life on tour, collaborating with different artists, and their new track featuring Macklemore, Jess Glynne, and Dan Caplen.

The British band talks life on tour, collaborating with different artists, and their new track featuring Macklemore, Jess Glynne, and Dan Caplen.

Text: Cara Hessels

UK-based jamband Rudimental has blessed us once again with another contagious, uplifting beat, this time featuring friends Macklemore, Jess Glynne and Dan Caplen. As the lyrics for “These Days” reflect upon love, loss, and friendship, the song ultimately delivers a hopeful message that will keep you on a high for days to come. To get inside the minds of the men behind the music, we sat down with Rudimental to talk influences, bucket lists, and what’s next.

You guys have been traveling like crazy this year, how’s life been on the road?

Piers: It’s been good, we’ve been actually focusing a lot of our efforts in the studio as much as we can, and working on a new record. We’re really excited about it. That’s been the focus really at the moment.

So when you’re traveling so much, what is the process when it comes to working in the studio and writing music? Is the tour bus your studio? The hotel room?

Piers: We had a studio tour bus two years ago when we were touring America with Ed Sheeran, Between all the gigs, you’d have to come back for, like, two days and work on the songs, and just try to do it on the road. We wrote some really wicked ideas. One of the songs I remember we did when the bus broke down was the one with Bobby Womack. That was the last two albums, really. With this new album, it’s kind of been how we grew up making music, you know, being at home, coming to the studio, cycling or driving. We get stuck in the studio and jam together and write the music kind of old-school, because before the last two albums we didn’t really have time to do that. It’s nice to have time to do that on this record.

That’s gotta be fun. With everyone having their own role within the band, what’s it like when you all get together to make music? Who is responsible for what?

Piers: The main thing we do is get together and jam.

Amir: Yeah, and just have fun.

Piers: Yeah, and we don’t get into the computer stuff at the beginning. We write the song first, it’s just how we work, you know, it’s a band. People will ask us about the electronic music and it’s just a band. We get together, we write songs using our instruments, and then usually the electronic and the programming side of it, the beats, comes a bit later, so that’s kind of how we work. We write together. We think of some vocal ideas or concepts, and sometimes we’ll have a singer in the room with us to help us flesh it out.

So, how would you say your sound has evolved over the last few years then?

Piers:  On our first album, you know, this is controversial, but it almost felt like a sort of compilation because there were so many different influences and sounds on there, and we started to get a bit more focused on the second one. The second [album] was a bit more moody than the first, and the third one I feel like is a lot more upbeat, and it’s a lot more streamlined as well. We know our roots, we know we come from the UK underground culture, which is garageband drum, and bass, that kind of stuff, the Pirate Radio stuff, but we’re all soul heads. We love our funk, soul, reggae, so those influences are pretty prominent on the album now which is good because at this time there’s a lot of reggae influence in music and there’s a lot of African influence in it as well, so for us this is kind of what we grew up around.

Going off of that, what do you think about the state of mainstream music today and is it affecting your sound?

Amir: I think the whole Caribbean influence is really strong at the moment, which works for us, it’s kind of in our veins because of where we grew up.

What do you guys have on your bucket list? You’ve performed at festivals, you’ve travelled all over the world; what’s left?

Piers: A headline slot at Coachella or Glastonbury one day, that would be amazing. We want to travel markets that we haven’t broken into, like South America, and even rout North America more doing arenas, and taking America to the next level. To definitely increase our fan base out here and around the world… it’s a mad blessing.

With all of the artists you work with, do you guys have any dream collaborations?

Piers: I’ve always said I’d love to work with Lauryn Hill, I’ve been saying it for a while. I keep on saying it it’s going to happen. Fortunately, we’ve already worked with some of our dream collaborators. On the last album, we got in the studio with George Clinton from Parliament Funkadelic, he was a huge influence on all of us. Barrington Levy was on the new record as well, so we’ve kind of ticked a lot of those boxes and I feel like we need to tick a few hip-hop boxes as well. A thing that’s really inspiring for us is working with up-and-coming artists, and that’s one thing we’ve done across the last two albums that we’ll continue to do. We’ve also started our own record label. Anne-Marie was our first signer, and she’s smashing it. So, it’s kind of like the perfect model: find a new singer to come on the road with us, perform, grow, write their own album, and when they’re ready, we set them free and they’ll go smash it themselves.

Awesome. What’s next for you guys? What is immediately on the horizon?

Amir: Promoting our new single and working on our next album. We want to finish it so we can prepare for live shows and going back on the road for a world tour again.

Looking forward to it! Lastly, any fun facts you want to share?

Piers: Fun fact: I only brought one pair of boxers to the U.S.

What do you do about that?

Piers: Just wear the same ones each day, see how that goes.

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