White Ape are Tommy Mack (vocals & guitar), Jim Turner (guitar), Mike Davies (bass) and Olly Goulding (drums). Kick It Down, their forthcoming EP, is a return to the raw and subversive sound that slicked the streets of ‘70s London, with a deadpan humour and take no prisoners attitude that sees the band take on urban gentrification and highlights the creativity that blossoms in some of the more run down parts of the Capital.
We caught up with frontman Tommy for a quick chat.
- Where and when did you first discover your interest in music?
Mike, Jim and Ollie have been playing together since they were six or seven. For me (Tommy) it was jamming with my drummer brother. He was nine and I was 12, we literally couldn’t play anything except the riff from Dazed and Confused over and over again.
- What are your main ambitions in the industry?
Carve out our own space and invite the world into it, not squat in somebody else’s scene. My dream: A Warholian factory of the arts, housing artists in all media, creating a rich multi-faceted world for people to explore.
- When did you start writing your own songs/music?
Shortly after learning my third chord. Principally because I wasn’t good enough to play anyone else’s!
- What would you say is your music career highlight to date?
Supporting Babyshambles on tour with my old band, General Khaki. Totally up for it, wild crowds, getting groped in the moshpit and blinding sets from Pete and co.
- Who will we hear in your songs? What are your influences?
Captain Beefheart, Dick Dale, The Slits, The Creation, Iggy Pop, Ennio Morricone, The Specials.
- What’s the most important thing you’d want to tell people about your current release?
You’ll love it on the first listen and you’ll love it on the hundredth listen: it’s brash, catchy, off kilter, funny and rude but surprisingly intricate: lots to tease the ears and the brain.
- Who else can you recommend from your genre or local area for people to have a listen to?
Rot Jaws – brilliant post-Riot Grrl racket.
Kero Kero Bonito – Anglo-Japanese, video-game sampling faux-naif multicultural electro pop.
Jay Vee and The Cardinal Sins – Raw, swampy Brylcreme’d punkabilly voodoo.
MDME SPKR – awesome femme-punk noise
Jettyson – brash, confrontational garage rock fandango.
- Any gigs coming up?
We’ve got a launch party for the new EP on 17th January.
- Where can we find/follow you online?
Kick It Down is released January 19th 2015 via Sotones.