Interview at Fred Perry Brooklyn Shop

Wednesday 25th May 2016

Suffolk's Basement are a one of a kind talent, mixing 90's post-hardcore with punk and grunge. The young British band recently played a gig in Brooklyn's Fred Perry Shop on Grand Street, and afterwards kindly agreed to answer a few questions.

(Band Members: Alex Henerey - “AH”, Duncan Stewart - “DS”, James Fisher - “JF”, Ronan Crix - “RC”, Andrew Fisher - “AF”.)

Band members of the band Basement, thank you for joining us today we are excited to have you play for us

AH: Thank you for having us!

So let’s jump into it, describe your style in three words?

DS: “Super. Cool. Dudes”

AH for RC: “Suave British Gentleman”

AF for JF: “Always Wears Sweatpants”

AF: “Coffee, hats, and totes” … “Tote-bag-hat” jokes Ronan.

What does Fred Perry mean to you?

AH: When we talk about what we’ve done everything has been associate with, we have only done in-stores with Dr. Martens, and now Fred Perry - everything has been British. So the next thing would be Stone Island.

AF: We associate it [Fred Perry] with the Mod and Hard Mod/Skinhead culture. So to us it’s sharp dressing, look slick and tough.

DS: We also associate it with tennis players as well, back when they used to wear it.

RC: I used to exclusively wear Fred Perry when I was at Uni. 

What was your favourite item?

RC: I had a green polo shirt with white and blue tipping, it was great – I wore it all the time.

AH: I always associated it with football culture, smart-casuals with their nice Fred Perry jackets and shirt on walking down the street to the pub. It’s cool to see that, and also at Punk shows, so it’s cool that these different cultures are meshed in this one brand.

What’s the first record you played on repeat?

AF: Blink 182 “Enema of the State” I just kept it going the first CD I ever bought. When we’re touring I love listening to “London Calling” by the Clash.

DS: Sum 41 “All Killer, No Filler”

JF: That might be mine too – Sum 41 “All Killer, No Filler”

RC: Muse “Showbiz”

AH: Red Hot Chili Peppers “Californication”

How should your music be listened to? 

JF: In sweatpants…

AH: I like to think of it, maybe on someone’s first school trip? Something like that which gets them into punk or rock – that’s the dream scenario.

AF: Live, definitely live.

RC: Someone came up to me and said that our New Jersey show and that was the first live show they’d ever been to. That to me is the coolest thing to hear ever. Band – Live, definitely live.

What do you miss about home when you’re on tour? 

DS: I think I speak for all of us when I say good bread. British bread is much better than American bread. We’re talking loaf of sliced brown bread with peanut butter for breakfast every day.

AF: English breakfast tea and milk I have at home, I know it’s here in the states but it doesn’t quite steep right.

RC: My cat.

AH: [A full] English Breakfast.

JF: Black pudding too.

AF: It’s really the little things about home that we miss.

What British music icons inspire your sound today? 

DS: Me [laughs], I guess guitar players like Jimmy Paige, Led Zeppelin like music. Specifically that sound that they captured really influenced us. Awesome guitars. Black Sabbath as well – Geezer Butler, amazing.

AF: I listen to lots of British music, like I love the Clash –

AH: Radiohead, Thom Yorke – they pushed the boundaries of rock music, taking guitars and then going into electronics and synth and drum machines. Crazy stuff you hear the first record and then you’re like “this is a sick rock-band” and then it opens your mind to the possibilities of what could be done as a rock band. Can’t wait for the tour – couldn’t get tickets haha.

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