No, Jonny Craig hasn’t per­formed a bru­tal mem­ber cull – it’s time you ac­quainted your­selves with the UK’s blis­ter­ing new punk duo, Slaves.

Blunt - - Upfront - Words by Emily Swan­son. ARE YOU SAT­IS­FIED? IS OUT MAY 29 THROUGH EMI.

It’s fair to say that some of the world’s great­est ideas have come about af­ter knock­ing back a few cheeky froth­ies. Of course, go too far and you can find your­self con­tem­plat­ing some­thing that puts you in se­ri­ous con­tention for a Dar­win Award, but hit that tipsy sweet spot… “Lau­rie used to come and watch my old band quite a lot and I got chat­ting to him one night af­ter a few beers and he was like, ‘Hey, if you ever need a bassist, I’m your guy’,” Isaac Hol­man tells us, ex­plain­ing how he and gui­tarist Lau­rie Vin­cent came to be the rol­lick­ing garage punk duo Slaves. “We ac­tu­ally ended up get­ting rid of our bassist so I called up Lau­rie and soon af­ter that, we re­alised we didn’t re­ally want to be do­ing that style of mu­sic any­more, so we broke off and started Slaves. We were look­ing for a drum­mer but we didn’t re­ally know many – it’s a pretty small place around here [Kent, Eng­land] and there’s not many like­minded peo­ple. So Lau­rie brought two drums to my house for writ­ing pur­poses, and then we never re­ally changed. I still can’t play a small drum kit,” Hol­man laughs. Some­times the sim­plest con­ver­sa­tions can snow­ball into the most mirac­u­lous things. When we speak, Slaves are gear­ing up for a largely sold out UK tour and await­ing the re­lease of their de­but al­bum, Are You

Sat­is­fied? – a fiercely Bri­tish and bel­liger­ent tonguein-cheek take on mod­ern punk and the world. Vin­cent churns out the sim­ple yet men­ac­ing riffs while Hol­man barks and bashes the drums. The al­bum may be their of­fi­cial de­but, but in the years since 2012’s mini re­lease, Sugar Coated Bit­ter Truth, the band have been able to sharpen their cause and find their sound. And Hol­man’s dad is one of their big­gest fans. “He loves it!” the singer beams. “Lau­rie of­ten says that he played a big part in shap­ing our sound when we first started. I sort of grew up on a lot of punk mu­sic and garage rock and when we first started out, my dad would sit us down and just put a big pile of records in our laps and play them to us, play­ing other bands that had stand-up drum­mers, play­ing Lau­rie other bands that had sim­i­lar gui­tar tones… I grew up with a lot of vinyl around the house be­cause my dad’s a mas­sive muso, so I would watch him lie there and lis­ten to full al­bums day af­ter day.” Charm­ingly, the band treat their Face­book page as if it were their only per­sonal ac­count, fill­ing it with anec­dotes about com­pet­i­tive hot­dog eat­ing, their cats, and their favourite mem­ber of Take That (it’s Rob­bie). Rather than pre­sent­ing them­selves as un­touch­able god­like fig­ures, Slaves are us­ing so­cial me­dia to sal­vage that per­sonal as­pect in an overtly com­mer­cial in­dus­try. “I think ev­ery­one gets too con­sumed in the in­dus­try; it’s quite hor­ri­ble and unattrac­tive,” Hol­man says. “Me and Lau­rie are just re­ally quite nor­mal peo­ple and lit­tle things amuse us. I think it’s im­por­tant for our fans and for ev­ery­one to know that that’s what we’re like be­cause I wouldn’t ever want any­one to think that I wasn’t like that. It’s gone way fur­ther than we ever thought it would, but we’re still the same peo­ple that we were when we started the band. “We were say­ing when we started our live shows as well, we have a lot of crowd in­ter­ac­tion and we like talk­ing to the crowd and hear­ing what they think and hav­ing con­ver­sa­tions mid-song. It should be an ex­pe­ri­ence for ev­ery­one; it’s not just ev­ery­one look­ing at us on stage, we want ev­ery­one to be a part of what we’re do­ing. Our shows are def­i­nitely quite chaotic and dis­jointed and I think some of the best live per­for­mances you can watch are the ones that look like they’re gonna fall apart at any sec­ond.”



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