Last year we started hearing about a band out of Arctic Monkeys‘ hometown of Sheffield in The UK. That band was The Sherlocks, who released their debut full length album, Live For The Moment, in August of 2017. After specialty hosts took a little time to get to knowThe Sherlocks, they scored a pretty big SubModern hit with "Will You Be There?" which hit #1 on our chart back in April, shortly before I had the opportunity to have them in for a SubModern Session. You can hear their acoustic performance here and read my interview with frontman Kiaran Crook below.
FMQB: First of all, if you want to introduce the rest of the band members, who we’ll be hearing play some acoustic tunes with you.
Kiaran Crook: Well, I’m Kiaran, I sing. We’ve got Josh, who’s the lead guitarist. Andy, his brother is the bassist. And my brother Brandon, who’s the drummer.
FMQB: So this is a family thing, but how did the band get started, aside from the obvious; you all lived in the same house? Well, the two of you and the two of them.
KC: I wish I could think of a better story, cause it’s pretty boring. Basically Josh and Andy moved into the same village as where me and Brandon live. It’s one of them places where everybody knows each other so if somebody new moves into that village, you know about it straight away. We just sorta bumped into Andy one day and we just started, we call it knocking about, like hanging around. Just became mates. We didn’t even know about Josh cause he was locked away in his bedroom, probably learning a chord or something.
FMQB: Were the rest of you playing music yet?
KC: I started playing guitar on me mom’s guitar and I wanted an electric guitar. Me dad said, "if you want an electric guitar, you need to get lessons." So I eventually got this guitar and Brandon got a drum kit, and we used to mess around with our instruments and make a lot of noise to be honest. We weren’t very good. We’re still not, but we were worse then. With time we met Josh through Andy. It took a while. So it was just me, Brandon, and Josh in our conservatory, just making noise really. I can’t recall a time when we said, "Do you want to be in a band?" We just found ourselves spending loads of time playing together. It took some time to even realize we needed a bass guitar. Andy weren’t doing anything else so we were like, "get on that bass. Learn it"
FMQB: So this was all when you were back in school, you were kids. How long ago was this, cause you’re all still pretty young guys?
KC: Eight years ago.
FMQB: When did it get serious?
KC: I don’t think it ever got serious to be honest.
FMQB: It’s serious when you’re on the charts in The UK.
KC: It got serious in terms of like not drinking as much at shows (I’m making it sound like we’re alcoholics). And from my side, the songwriter, knuckling down and trying to write the best songs. Just little things like that, but we never take ourselves too seriously. We spent the first three years doing covers in working men’s clubs and pubs. I suppose it turned serious when we stopped doing that, just cause we all got fed up playing other people’s songs and we wanted to do our own. You could say that were the turning point.
FMQB: How have your songs evolved from those early ones?
KC: There weren’t a songwriter for a start. It was just everyone mucking in, trying to make something. I can even remember at one bit, me, Josh, and Andy were all just singing at the same time, just shouting really.
FMQB: So from that point, things really solidified?
KC: Yeah, I think with time and once we started playing a bit more, I just must’ve just wrote a song one day and the rest of the boys must’ve thought, "It’s not too bad. It’s better than what we’ve got." So, I just became the songwriter. I never said, "I’m gonna be the songwriter," like if anyone else wants to be the songwriter, they’re more than welcome to.
FMQB: So now that you have Live For The Moment, your full length debut out, how’s it different going out there with a body of work like that?
KC: An album gives you a chance to show what you’re about. Some bands tend to write the same sort of song twelve times or whatever, so every single song on the album sounds the same, but I think our album is pretty different to that in the respect that there’s a few different kinds of songs. You could even argue, the second half, we see it as like a proper record, where you flip it over still. And to me, the second half of the record sounds different to the first. The first is tunes like "Escapade" and "Last Night" and stuff like that which is dancey. And the second half is songs like "Candlelight" and "Turn The Clock," which are more emotional or whatever. Having an album definitely gives people a chance to take in what we’re about, rather than just singles. You might need to listen to the album as a whole a few times to really get it.
FMQB: You’re from the Sheffield area, which is where Arctic Monkeys also came up. A lot of people make that comparison. Do you think it’s mainly because they’re from the same area?
KC: Yeah, I think it’s just lazy journalism. I don’t mean to sound as if I’m offended, because I’m actually not. Comparing us to a band like Arctic Monkeys, I’m actually quite happy about because if we could be half as big as what they are, I’d be pretty happy. So I am actually glad in that sense, but as far as musically, I honestly don’t think we sound anything like them. I mean, I’m biased.
FMQB: You recently got to tour with Liam Gallagher. What do you take away from an experience like that and from a guy like him in terms of your own career?
KC: You’ve sorta gotta play the game a little bit in the industry, but I think the main thing you get from Liam is, he just don’t care, does he? He’s almost like the bad boy at school. He’s like a bit of a rebel. I quite like that. I just find it funny. He just doesn’t take no nonsense and you’ve gotta admire him for that. You’ve gotta compromise on everything to make your band work, obviously. But at the same time I think it’s it’s good to take a bit of what Liam carries and just remember where you came from and who you are, and all that sorta stuff.
FMQB: Are you already starting to work on some ideas for album #2?
MB: Yeah definitely. You could argue that we started the second album at the same time as the first. I wrote a load of songs which didn’t sound like they’d fit on this debut album, so we just put them to the side and put them in the vault and locked it. They’re good songs, but they weren’t right for what we were trying to achieve on the first album. So them songs will be coming back out, plus loads of other new songs I’ve already wrote. And I’m always writing on the road anyway. Even when I ain’t got a guitar in me hands, I’m still just chugging away… in me mind.
By Josh T. Landow