Back in 2005, with an average age of just 17, Billy, Charlotte and Josh crashed onto the international music scene with their cult debut album ‘Young For Eternity’ and rock-club floor filler ‘Rock & Roll Queen’. NME proclaimed them “The sexiest thing to sweep rock ‘n roll off its feet in years!”.
In 2010 they headlined 2000trees, thrilling the crowd with their explosive rock sound and wild stage performances. And now they are back for more – including a special acoustic set in the Forest…
We chatted to Billy Lunn and even got some Trees fans’ questions in… enjoy!
WE. CAN’T. WAIT!!!
Tell us how the band started…
“We began life as three bored kids with an intense love for rock ‘n roll; after seeing so many of our favourite bands tearing it up onstage, we decided we’d like to make some noise too. At school, Josh and I, instead of playing football at lunchtimes like everyone else, we decided to use the school’s musical instruments to teach ourselves how to play. I started going out with Charlotte, and we thought it’d be a great idea to include her in the noisy fun. We started writing our own songs and playing venues in London, and the rest is history!”
When you think back to those days, what memories stand out?
“The three of us squashed into the small room at the back of the Ludwick Community Centre in Welwyn Garden City thrashing out and just loving being swamped in the pure noise and racket. No dreams of making it big, no expectations of anything higher than just satisfying our own need for expression.”
What were your top three gigs you ever played and why?
“Main Stage at Reading Festival 2008 was a special one, as Reading was always the festival we went to – Charlotte and I first went there in 2001, and it totally changed our lives. Summersonic in Japan in 2006 was very special – the air was electric with a united sense of joy and passion. Moscow in 2012, as it was a gig that just totally took us by surprise – a huge venue, packed to the rafters, with everybody losing their minds.”
You headlined the main stage at 2000trees a few years back, tell us about that…
“Well let me just say that it was a huge honour for us playing 2000trees last time, as it was, I believe, our first official festival headlining performance. The crowd were both welcoming and happily insane. As well as this, we all had a fantastic day leading up to the gig itself. The food, the beer, the atmosphere, the people, the weather, the activities that are available. An absolute pleasure.”
Now you’re returning as Thursday headliner – Trees fans love Thursday – so what can they expect from you?
“Expect lots of smiles and lots of fun. Our main objective is to make people smile and to get that crowd jumping, so it may get sweaty. We’ll also be playing lots of new songs from our brand new album!”
Rumour has it there’s also going to be a secret set in the Forest too, tell us about that…
“Well, it’s not so secret now, but I do love to play the odd solo acoustic set here and there, and as soon as I heard there was an opportunity to play in the Forest, I jumped at the chance. It’ll be a great precursor to the madness that will follow. There may even be a few covers thrown in for good measure, so get your requests all lined up.”
Are you planning to climb the stage rigging again like you did in 2010?
“I’m getting on a bit in years now, y’see. I’m not sure the knees can handle those sorts of shenanigans. What am I saying?! Of course I’ll climb the rigging. If it can be climbed and jumped off, I’m your man.”
And how’s it all going right now/ what’s going on?
“It’s all going rather well at the moment. We’ve just done a nine week EU/UK tour; lots of countries played, lots of cuts and bruises acquired, far too many stage dives and jumps off the drum kit, but we’re having the time of our lives and we just cannot wait for the summer festival season. We plan on gigging right the way through 2015 and 2016, at which time we’ve decided to have a few years off to spend time with our families and to plan the next album.”
Finally from me… if you weren’t a musician what would be your dream job?
“Truck driver. I know I’ve maybe romanticised it a bit, but I just love the idea of the open road, the radio on full blast, and time to contemplate and reflect. Yeah, I’ve really romanticised that particular vocation, haven’t I…?”