The Rogue State Circus are from Northampton and specialise in a sort of Indie Folk Rock. Although built around a strong Acoustic background, the Power Pop Influence is plentiful. Here Jon Delaney talks about the band.
So tell me about Rogue State Circus.
"Rogue State Circus were originally formed in 2009 when Duncan and I met and first performed at IPO Liverpool in 2010. We released our first LP "Songs From The Sea of Serenity" in 2011. Tracks from that first LP such as "Everything Under The Sun", "The Angels and The Astronauts" and "Dandelions" had extensive BBC and Independent Radio airplay. We've become a regular fixture at Regional Festival Main Stages.
I write the songs. The flexible line-up of the Band currently consists of me on Lead Vocals and Guitar, Duncan Bisatt 0n Bass and Vocals, Karl Muddiman on Keyboards, Simon Barr on 12 String Guitars and Charles Hathaway on Drums or Rai Clews on Cajon/Percussion.
Additionally, the band are also often joined by Karen Angela on Vocals. We enjoy playing stripped down acoustic sets as well as fully fledged electro-acoustic ones."
So who are your Influences?
"I'm influenced heavily by the Classic Power Pop of the 60's and 70's through New Wave and 80's Pop too. I like everything from the Fab Four to Prefab Sprout, Bacharach to Big Star, Kinks to Killers, Crowded House to Costello, Magazine to The Manics, Steely Dan to the Stranglers, We love a good Jangly tune with 12 strings and Acoustics, very much part of our eclectic sound.
Rogue State Circus is first and foremost all about the songs and the songwriting - we're known for being "truly, truly genre-warping" (Kevin Buxton - Kontra Roots) - I've always loved great songwriting and I'm still working on it.
I'm a great believer that if the song works on solo vocal and acoustic guitar or piano alone then it's probably fit for purpose to be "Power Popped up" arranged and built on by the whole band."
So what are are your current and future plans?
"We've just completed our 12 track second LP "Songs From The Sea of Storms" with Platinum Producer Gavin Monaghan (Editors, Nizlopi, Sherlocks, Twang, Scott Matthews, OCS, Blinders) for release this summer. and
As the title suggests, the songs have a slightly darker edge this time round. We've also got another 11 tracks already partially recorded with Gavin for the third LP in our "Lunar Trilogy" prospectively called "Mare Imbrium" (Sea of Rainbows) and hopefully to be completed for release next year."
........And Your Ambitions?
"Relatively modest. We just want people to hear and enjoy our songs and play them to as many people as possible. We all totally adore playing live and now, thanks to the encouragement of the production wizard that is Gavin, are finally learning to love the Studio too.
We're looking to play more festival and gigs all over the place, garner more Blog coverage, reviews and Radio Play. We see our audience as being people who like premium strength, melodic Power Pop songwriting with well crafted lyrics and also appreciate a passionate, energetic live performance.
We're really looking to enjoy IPO once again as audience as well as performers. It's a first class festival full of real enthusiasm and joy, David and Rina providing the lead. We love Liverpool, for The Beatles, The people, The Graces and The Cathedrals (and whisper it, three of us are LFC fans).
So if we manage to win a few hearts and minds for our own music while we're there, so much the better."
The Rogue State Circus are soon to release their new album, you can hear songs here. The first album can be listened to and bought here. The band play both The Cavern Club and The Cavern Pub on Monday 21 May.