With influences from Napalm Death to Neil Young, Bristol’s Langkamer are making diverse music that is fit for both sides of the Atlantic. We checked in with core members, Josh and Dan to chat about their new single ‘Full Contact’, creating the music video on a shoestring budget, and how to pass the time during lockdown.
Josh: In 1976 I posted a note on the school’s notice board in search of musicians for a new band. Some people responded and we met at my house for a jam. We set up in the kitchen, me on drums, Bono on lead vocals, The Edge, and his older brother Dik on guitar, and Adam Clayton on bass guitar. We were only 14 or so at the time and the music was a bit ropey. I described it as “The Larry Mullen Band” for about ten minutes, but as soon as Bono walked in, I knew I had no chance of being in charge.
Dan: Me and Josh were down the pub, on a bit of a high after writing a new track ‘Monday, Bloody Mondays’ and Josh asks me to borrow some money to buy a round. Next thing I know he is calling me up telling me to come to the woods where he asks me to participate in a variety of fitness exercises, that later turned out to be a music video.
D: One of our primary influences, when we started out, was the seminal album Scum from Napalm Death. Although for our first few EP’s we drew more from our country roots, I think by the time we started writing ‘Full Contact’ we felt it was time to incorporate a few more grindcore elements into our sound. I think the last few albums from Dying Fetus and Pig Destroyer have been some of their best work and I can’t wait to start tuning our guitars six, nay, seven drops down.
J: I am working my way through the list of films with a rating of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. Also sunbathing on the roof, a lot.
D: I have been finally engaging in routine practice to improve my Travis picking and claw hammer guitar. I sit in front of a clock and use the second hand like a metronome, whilst I pluck the same few strings repetitively. It’s a beautifully masochistic way of building up your fundamentals while watching your life slowly tick away.
J: It can polarise people a bit. In a place as painfully hip as Bristol, a lot of people disregard the genre completely. I remember talking to a trendy friend a few years back and he was going on this big rant about how it was the only genre he would never listen to. At the end of the day though, you put ‘Unknown Legend’ or ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ on at a house party and people are going to lose their shit.
D: I think a lot of people have quite a narrow perception of what country is. It can incorporate pretty much any element of old Americana from Appalachian folk music to bluegrass, and act as a vehicle for storytelling. It is so rich in tradition that you can feel the lives of generations past in a good track. I don’t think you get that in any other genre in the UK apart from more traditional forms of folk music. So, it is kind of understandable why a lot of UK audiences don’t immediately connect to it. I think you have to immerse yourself in another life a little bit to grasp its history.
J: I do also think music transcends borders. It can take a while, but good things always travel. Just look at how much Drake loves grime.
D: Find creative ways to start climbing up my house. I’ve been very horizontal the past few weeks, I want to be more vertical.
J: You should get up on the roof mate seriously, it’s wicked.
J: I’ve recently rediscovered The Streets’ A Grand Don’t Come For Free. I can’t stop listening to it, it’s a masterpiece. People always talk about Original Pirate Material as being the only ‘proper’ Streets album, but I love the linear narrative that runs throughout A Grand Don’t Come For Free. It’s so clever. The recurring characters and themes. It’s like listening to an audiobook.
Very diverse, some good choices there. Well thanks for chatting with us and we wish you luck with climbing and future endeavours.
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