budists_groupshot_largeQ: The Budists were characteristically a very high energy sound, I think we described it as ‘dirty urban funk (that) supplies the energy and readiness that all young men possess.’ The Freewheel feels a much more tender and gentle sound. How does it differ writing songs with Laura?

Clayton: It differs immensely in every way! Writing with the Budists was like piecing together a sonic jigsaw puzzle, you knew you had all the pieces there you just had to find them! We used to cram into this basement flat and someone would start a groove of some sort then the rest of the band would kick in. We just used to bang away for hours working out all the different parts until it sounded okay. It was a fairly immediate-chaotic process most of the time but it worked pretty well. I used to shy away from subjects which had any real deep emotional content back then. Too scared or maybe embarrassed to talk about such stuff. It was all about the funk and the party and making people dance their asses off. I feel much more ready to talk about more personal matters now.

The process of writing with Laura is more varied. Sometimes we start with the chords, sometimes the lyrics then we add embellishments, harmonies, other instrument parts and so on. It’s much more chilled out and more honest. Not that Budists were fake in any way it’s just what it was at the time. Stinkin! I heard a guitarist at The Grove in Leeds one night say, ‘rhyme without reason is the highest treason’. I’m trying to implement that sort of ethos into our writing these days.

Q: The sense of the personal is clearly apparent in the songs. The combination of the subject matter, the melodies and close harmonies make for a very strong emotional tug to the music. Two of your songs that we showcase here ‘Craving’ and ‘On Track’ draw deep from the plight of people who are suffering great misfortune in life and create an atmosphere of the heartbreaking difficulties that some people clearly suffer. What drives you to write these songs and what is it like bringing these emotions to life in front of audiences?

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