The Mysterines Go Record Shopping With CLASH

To explore their influences...

‘Afraid of Tomorrows’ – the latest offering from Merseyside based rock icons The Mysterines – can best be described as a sonic deep dive. Littered with moments of heavy solace, acoustic-led moments of release and frantic ground-shakers, the albums unified these moments of contrast through subject matter, each track painting a clearer picture the band’s journey, and the history it contains. But as they sit smiling and chatting with CLASH after a headline show it’s clear that despite the sheer scale of the album, more has gone into its make-up than any listener could gauge. 

It’s why, in order to obtain a closer glance into the band’s creating process, CLASH asked each band member to head down to their local record shop and pick out a vinyl that has inspired them – whether it be when creating or elsewhere – and chat a bit about each LP’s influence.

Lia: Sparklehorse – ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’

Lia goes first, thinking carefully before she speaks. “I’ll use Sparklehorse,” she declares. “More specifically ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’, I was just listening to it”.

She delves into the backstory of the album, speaking slowly as she goes. “John introduced it to me,” she grins to herself. “Way back when I was 15, I think. I didn’t really get it initially, but I probably got into it around two years ago. I’d say they definitely influenced my songwriting, and my artistic approach in general.”

George: Radiohead – ‘Kid A’

When asked about his choice, bass player George seems to perk up with excitement. “‘Kid A’ is probably the first Radiohead album I really got into when I was a kid. But only I’d say in the last three or four years have I really become a fan of their discography.” 

As he speaks further, the direct connections between Radiohead and that band’s latest release become evident. “I’ve always wanted to write something like the bassline from optimistic. I’d definitely say that That was my biggest influence on the basslines for the album. I didn’t particularly know if I could write anything similar, but it was a fun challenge. I hope people can hear that influence,” he says, with a knowing look.

Paul: LCD Soundsystem – ‘Sound Of Silver’

“LCD is a big one for me,” Paul begins. “I’ve got three older sisters and they’re all fans, so I’ve always been around their music. Then, when we were writing the album Leah and I went to see the film Meet Me In The Bathroom, and LCD was featured really heavily. So after that I went back to listening to ‘Sound Of Silver’ again.”

He concentrates for a minute, thinking about the best way to express his admiration. “It’s just such a great album, it doesn’t really sound like anything else. Apparently when he first showed it to people, the reaction was kind of like, ‘what the fuck is this?’ But he believed in it. That’s what we wanted to have with this new album. The mentality of believing in ourselves.”

Callum: Primal Scream – ‘Screamadelica’

When the questions reach Callum he seems ready, relaxing into his responses as he shares. “‘Screamadelica’ is obviously such a seminal album,” he begins. “It was really one of the first to blend 90s house music in with alternative rock… just alternative music in general.” He pauses quickly before continuing. “We actually got to tour with them for the 30th anniversary of the album. To see it night by night was really something, just in general, it was just amazing to experience.” 

“I can’t really articulate the way it makes you feel. Positive, of course, but also some catharsis, a blend of emotions that aren’t always entirely happy but you want to feel. That takeaway, and the desire it gave me to create really helped me write, and see this new album in a different light.”

As we begin to wrap up, the mood feels light with new revelations. It stands clear that ‘Afraid Of Tomorrow’ is an ode to the band’s sonic inspirations, combining their influences with personal experience to offer up a release steeped in rock-tinged release. They talk about the record with pride, relishing in their jam-packed tour schedule. “We just played Manchester. Before that it was the Hurricane festival in Germany,” Callum spills. ‘I think it’s like their version of Reading and Leeds!” A slight, lingering ponder occurs. “It’s always nice to see hard work pay off,” he declares. “We can see it all flourishing now.”

The Mysterines’ new album ‘Afraid of Tomorrows’ is out now.

Words: Lily Blakeley-Edwards

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