An Interview With New Desert Blues

It’s 1.30 on a very snowy Sunday morning and I’ve just managed to grab three out of five members of New Desert Blues who’ve just played Club Psychedelia supporting Black Manila. Trying to find a quiet spot in the club to talk to them is proving impossible so we escaped to their car and turn the heating up full blast, very cosy!

New Desert Blues, how did you find tonight’s show?

Ian: I felt the show was really really good, I thought it was probably one of the best shows we’ve ever played.
Joshua: And the first show of this year!
Ian: Yes the first show of this year!


And what have you got lined up for after tonight’s show, for the next few months?

Josh: We will be releasing a single.

Is there a name yet for this single?

Jim: We haven’t really decided on the song, but yeah we’re gonna release something soon.

So have you got a couple of songs that you have an equal amount of love for then and you can’t decide on which one?

Josh: We think we know what’s gonna be the song but we don’t wanna give anything away yet either.
Ian: And the name hasn’t been a 100% confirmed yet either, you’ll probably find it’ll be a blokes name.
Jim: We kind of have this thing of like, well I guess if anyone follows us they’ll probably already know, we have this thing where we sort of name our songs after guys for some reason. (laughs)


Ok… (laughs)

Ian: Our song’s normally have a narrative about something or an experience.
Josh: And their the main characters in the song…


So theirs no love songs for women within your band?

Josh: No not yet… We haven’t written a love song yet. (laughs)
Jim: Jimmy writes the songs…
Ian: I think he’s gonna write a song about the Spanish girl from tonight’s show but don’t quote us on that. (laughs)
Jim: Our next song’s going to be called ‘Senorita’ (laughs)


So that’s quite unusual for a band to not write songs about women and love, what do you think about that?

Josh: Well we’ve all been in previous bands and done it to death about ex-girlfriends and stuff, but we get more influenced by movies we watch and things that more people can relate to other than having a girlfriend or a boyfriend. So it’s good to have a story, I like to have write down lyrics and then be able to read them and tell a story, I think that’s what we try to do.

So what is the long term plan for you if you have one?

Jim: I guess we want to do a record and that’s as far as we kind of see it at the moment. We’ve got a lot of songs, something like 25 I think.

Wow, so an albums worth if not more…

Jim: Yeah so I guess we’re kind of honing it at the moment and road testing songs at the moment and stuff.
Ian: We’re lucky enough to record the songs ourselves so we can tell what’s good and whats not good. Like if a song doesn’t tend to work almost immediately we just scrap it.


But would you plan to keep those songs for B sides for later on?

Josh: Possibly a few of them mayby, I think all the songs we played tonight are keepers definitely, It’s quite hard to pick a setlist the moment.
Jim: Yeah, there’s no definitive rule with you know ‘right that’s it the song is crap we’re never gonna play it again’, you never know you might pull it back at some point and find that it would work.
Ian: Especially with shows like tonight in a club, cos obviously it’s a club night and you don’t want to bring it down too much and want to keep it as loud as possible…that helped us pick the set for tonight.


That’s cool, so who would you say is your biggest musical influence as a band? If not a couple as I’m sure it’s difficult to pinpoint one.

Jim: Yeah I guess it’s difficult, I think we all have our own I guess.

Well if I could go round?

Ian: Well I think what we’ve said before is Bon Iver, Brand New, Johnny Cash and a bit of more that sort of thing.
Josh: And probably more recent, Father John Misty is a recent influence of ours definitely.


So there’s a real mixture there…

Jim: We’re open to everything!

So what was the last song each of you listened to?

Josh: I’ve had a Manchester Orchestra day.
Jim: I was actually listening to the new Local Natives…
Ian: I’m not sure….I can’t think.
Josh: What did we have on the way up here?
Ian: David Bowie – Ziggy Stardust.


Could each of you say what is your favorite song ever is right now?

Josh: Back Door Man by The Doors is probably my favorite song right now.
Ian: Well I’m going to say it’s a First Aid Kit song!


I was listening to them today! Which song?

Ian: Um…Wolf’s really good.
Jim: And for me um…
Ian: Something really heavy probably (laughs)
Jim: I’ve been listening to ‘William, It’s Really Nothing’ by The Smiths quite a lot lately so maybe that’s more my kind of song at the moment.


Is there any bands you’ve got tickets for to go see in the next few months?

Josh: Ah I’ve got Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, and Tame Impala.
Ian: Ive got Bruce Springsteen and Daughter tickets…


And if each of you could meet your musical icon, living or dead, who would you meet and what would you want to do with them?

Josh: Jim Morrison, we’d drink whiskey and eat chicken! (laughs)
Ian: I’m gonna say three, I’ve got a top three! David Bowie, Kurt Cobain but I’d also like to meet Dave Grohl to tell him that he didn’t write the drums for Nevermind! (laughs) cos we all know it’s Chud Channing, he takes the credit for it and he’s not worth it.
Jim: So what you basically do with Dave Grohl is give him a bollocking? (laughs)
Ian: Ha yeah what I’d do with him is sit him down and say ‘look, the demos of Nevermind, it’s the other guy playing on them, it’s the exact same drum beat so stop taking credit for them’ (laughs)
Jim: I’d probably say Johnny Marr and pick his brains and have a jam with him maybe, I dunno!


And what would you say has been your most craziest/ memorable or surprising gig to date yet?

Ian: Well it was pretty crazy that girl had come from Spain tonight to see us.
Josh: We played Wilderness fest in Oxfordshire and we had Tempter Trap come and watch us.
Josh: We played on the Sunday night but we had the whole weekend there and it was just sun…and I’d never ever been to a festival in my life, it was sunny, there were rivers you could swim in and everyone was like, ‘you’ve landed on your feet, your next festival is going to be down hill from here…’


Wow, sounded like you were living the dream! Well thank you very much New Desert Blues!

Check out New Desert Blues – Thom below and be sure to keep checking the Psychedelia website for their next upcoming show!

By Issy Dacre