Earlier this fall, I was able to attend the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival, a big festival held at Fiddler's Green Ampitheatre, a venue I had not been to in ages. Headliners included Alice In Chains and Jane's Addiction, bands that, astonishingly, I have never seen live even though I have loved them forever.
There were several other bands that I saw that day that were new (to me) and it was very cool to see some harder bands really rock it out. One of them was Charming Liars, originally from England but now based on Los Angeles. I was able to sit down with the guys after their set, and I found them to be super nice and funny and not nearly as intimidating as their rock show made me think they were.
ME: So, what is your story?
CHARLIE: (as in Charlie Cosser, lead singer) The story is three of us had been playing in a band together back in England, where we're from. When we graduated high school, we started university but then an opportunity came up for us to work with a producer in LA. Basically that ended up being the best decision we ever made. Not that that turned into anything necessarily, but it snowballed into another thing and another thing and we end up going back-and-forth between England and the States for about a year and then landed a record deal. And now we're here on tour.
ME: Tell me, UK vs. America? Your music feels more American to me.
CHARLIE: I think it's fair to say we grew up on American-sounding bands or American production. Whether it was American or UK bands we liked, predominantly their albums were made in Los Angeles. We're big fans of that big, chunky, thick wall of guitar sound. We are not the heaviest band in the world but there are elements of that in our sound. You know, there is a great rock scene in both countries, but there is a reason we're over here now.
ME: So you live here now?
CHARLIE: We moved to California to record our album and we kind of stayed. We have a work visas and everything, don't worry, we're legal.
(At this point I ask which one can do the best American accent and I was accosted by some very Southern American twang.)
CHARLIE: We decided at the start of the tour to buy a CB radio, so we could talk to truckers, you know. And we used our Southern accents to ask for directions. "Hey, do y'all know where exit 119 is?" Because, really, are they going to respond to this? (meaning his English accent.)
(Then I make some random comment about being from Maryland, and the Baltimore accent. Come to find out Mike Kruger, who plays bass, has family from there and is a huge Orioles fan. Go O's!)
ME: So you have an EP out now?
CHARLIE: Well, we actually have the whole album done but no one here knows us so we decided to release an EP with a selection of songs from the album first, while we toured a bit.
ME: Are you more well known in England?
CHARLIE: It's interesting. The three of us have played together since we were 13 with the exception of the time that we were in college. But it was all under different names and now we've added the two other guys, and Charming Liars is a completely new entity. So it will be interesting to see how we will be received in England now.
ME: What is the plan for touring then?
CHARLIE: We are definitely going to tour in America through the new year and hopefully into the new year. We'd like to go back to the UK and Europe too. The main vibe of this band is we always want to be on tour. Not for any reason other than we just love playing.
ME: What do you think is the best thing about Charming Liars?
CHARLIE: I think it's fair to say, the best way to be introduced to our band is at a live show. We have the EP, and the video for our single "New Disorder," sure, but it is interesting to see people come out to the shows and have a good time. We have had several signings on this tour, and we thought that no one was going to show up. But they did and so many people have said, "I had no idea who you guys were 30 minutes ago," and then bought the EP and they really love the music. So hopefully by next time we come to town, they will be singing the songs along with us.
I agree with Charlie. Their live show is great.
I look forward to the next time they hit Denver.
Thanks for the fun, guys.