It’s astonishing, really, to think that sibling band Kitty, Daisy and Lewis have now been going fifteen years. Perhaps it’s that they were so young when they started out; perhaps that it’s simply so difficult to imagine most families lasting a year in the high pressure environment of a touring band.
Even at fifteen years in, though, the Durham siblings still seem a young and oddly, wonderfully out of sync band. Chucking trends by the sidelines, they indulge in projects like building a studio to match the album they want to make, and produce a brand of old school rock n’ roll blended with folk, western, blues and old-world R&B that’s utterly at odds with today’s musical zeitgeist.
That, in itself, is something to love about them. The recording style could be from a pre-digital era, and is founded on musicianship and texture. The siblings collective list of instrumental competencies is longer enough to give a phenomenal range of potential styles, many of which can be found peaking into the the corners of beautifully constructed tracks.
Their latest album, simply called ‘Kitty, Daisy and Lewis The Third’ was released in late March, and explores themes of romantic anger and veiled protest, performed with a rockabilly edge and strung together by no lesser producer than The Clash’s Mick Jones.
The result is a theatrical brand of fun; a mish-mash of styles forming a unique and varied style, all melded together in their new Camden curry house home.
I caught up with the trio before their Dublin date, this Friday, May 22 at The Academy Green Room, to hear about working with Mick, building that studio and pigeon-holing in the music press…
Congratulations on album number three. Was this a very different proposition for you? Having started so young, does it feel like your music changes with you?
(Kitty) Thank you! Yes I think our music is always changing/developing as we get older, not just the song writing but we’ve included more of our musical influences on this record too.
A derelict Indian restaurant in Camden Town… I totally get the desire to be in Camden, but how did the restaurant come about as a recording location? Did you just happen to be in there and like the acoustics, or is it just a place you could get hold of to convert?
(Kitty) We’ve always lived in the area and our parents ate there when it was a restaurant. It’s a lovely building and we’ve always had an eye on it so when it went up for auction we jumped at the chance. We knew it would be a big job to take on as it was derelict for about 15 years but it was lots of fun once we got stuck in. And it was very exciting to get to work in a bigger space.
Mick Jones is quite some man to have fiddling about with your sound. What did you take from his involvement with the record?
(Kitty) It was a good laugh, usually it’s just the five of us in the studio and it can get really stressful. Having him there lifted our spirits and it was great to have another set of ears in the room. He also rehearsed with us prior to recording and he learnt all the songs on his guitar so he got to know them inside out.