1883 Magazine

If The Vamps is a name you’re unaware of, it could be quite possible you’ve been living under a large, soundproofed rock for the past few years. A four-piece who have built up a stratospheric following online, and in real life, they are a pop band of the least manufactured kind.

Honing their craft in both melodic pop songwriting and anthemic sonic sensibilities since 2012, The Vamps sell out arenas, have legions of adoring fans and, as 1883 quickly discovers, are just really nice boys. With new music, a book, tours and more planned in the coming months, this quartet are threatening to become with busiest boys in Britain. We sat down with them before our photo shoot in West London to cover a multitude of important topics, like their thrilling new single All Night, future collaborations and, er, whether Evian water really is better than Volvic.

We should start with your new single, what can you tell me about it?

James: So the new single is called All Night and it’s a song that even though we’re not writing a dance album it’s got elements of dance in the track. We mixed a dancey chorus with a drop to a singer-songwriter emotional verse style, so it’s a mix of genres. It’s about a nostalgia, not like you’ve split up with someone but when you’re apart you’re thinking about them. In the verses it also subtly hints at the fact that the person has helped you become a better person and helped you in difficult times.

How did the song evolve?

James: It’s a song that we did with a guy called Frank E who’s a producer in LA and it was created on two trips there. First of all he sent the idea of the chorus, and it sounds like it’s being sung by children but it’s pitched up so it’s like that kind of sample almost. Then Brad and I went for the first trip, we did some verses and then Connor went later with Brad. Tristan’s been working on it helping and advising production-wise because he does production, so it’s a song that’s been happening over the past few months. It started really with that chorus and we wrote around it.

Presumably it’s going to be part of a new album too?

Tristan: Definitely yeah. We’re focusing on the single right now but we’ve got about thirty or forty songs that we need to choose from at the moment, we’re excited about that. That will come out mid-next year I reckon.

And you’ve got the autobiography as well…

Connor: Yeah, that will be out 20th October and we’re doing a book tour for that. It’s good, it’s got things that people might never had heard about us before and some deep, dark secrets.

I was going to ask you are there lots of secrets in there?

Connor: There is many.

Was it fun putting the book together or was it quite challenging?

James: It was relatively easy actually. It was amazing how fast it came together, we had Jordan our ghost writer come on tour with us when we were doing our last arena tour and she experienced what it’s like to be in The Vamps. She only really had a few sessions with us where we sat down and answered questions, so really it was amazing how the book happened with her. We wrote our own sections a little bit too. It was nice because it was honest, it wasn’t like we had to really think about what was right or wrong to say, we just said how it was.

You’ve recently been to India too, how was that?

Connor: It was really good. It was really busy, we had a lot of promo and it was a bit of an eye opener for us as well because it was very different in terms of the culture and everything. We played a show as well.

How did that go?

Connor: Really good! We managed to get 700 people into a 300 capacity place [laughs].

Were the crowd singing your lyrics back to you as well?

Tristan: Yeah it was mental.

So I guess you’ve been to loads of places now, is there anywhere left in the world you want to visit?

Tristan: Russia.

James: New Zealand.

Brad: China would be cool and Fiji.

James: Africa.

Tristan: Bora Bora, that’s what I’m talking about.

Let’s talk about collaborations, you’ve done a few, do you have a favourite?

Tristan: I think Demi [Lovato] for me.

James: Yeah.

Tristan: She’s amazing. She’s so nice as well, so cute.

Brad: We had OMI. Was it only OMI on the last album?

Connor: Yeah I think so.

James: Silentó as well.

Brad: Silentó was cool because he’s a rapper. I think we’d like to do more with rappers, it’s fun and you always get really cool lyrical content from rappers.

Have you got any collaborations planned for the next album?

James: We do but I don’t know what I can say.

I don’t want to get you in trouble!

Brad: It’s again very different. Demi made sense to us because it was two pop people coming together…

Tristan: Now we’re rock [laughs].

Brad: And Silentó was a bit different because it was a rapper but we’ve pushed ourselves again on this one and challenged ourselves, so you’ll have to wait and see.

Do you have any dream collaborations?

James: Maybe a DJ, so Matoma or The Chain Smokers.

Brad: We’ve always said Ed Sheeran, he’s a great DJ Ed Sheeran [laughs] but it would be good to work with him.

Connor: Calvin Harris.

What music are you listening to outside of your own at the minute? What’s everyone into?

Connor: Bring Me The Horizon for me.

Brad: Zak Abel he’s really good, and Jamie Woon.

James: Chain Smokers, Justin Bieber…

Connor: Flo Rida

Tristan: Flo Rida always, since ‘01 really.

And you’ve got your record label, Steady Records, what do you look for when signing bands, because obviously you’ve got The Tide…

James: We look for musicians, people that have a passion for the craft of songwriting and music. I think with both bands we’ve seen younger versions of ourselves in them, so The New Hope Club especially are very similar to how we were when we were that age, we just like nice people I guess.

Are they your latest signing?

James: The New Hope Club, yeah.

Brad: But both them and The Tide are really talented boys, if you put them in a room with a few guitars they’re brilliant, so it’s really nice to see that.

I was going to talk a little bit about YouTube too, Brad and James you met via YouTube right?

James: Yeah, we all technically met via YouTube sort of.

So who are your favourite YouTubers at the moment?

James: I know it’s a cliché thing but I find Caspar [Lee] so funny.

Connor: I like KSI.

Brad: Ozzy Man Reviews.

James: Loads of things, we watch a lot of videos.

What was the first song you each learnt to play on your instrument?

Tristan: I think it was Green Day.

James: Seven Nation Army for me.

Brad: Smoke On The Water.

James: Oh yeah that was before Seven Nation Army.

Connor: Mine was Batman.

Brad: That’s quite hard.

Connor: It was much slower though, it sounded more like Jaws.

You have achieved so much already, is there anything left you still want to achieve?

Brad: Oh yeah loads. I think as soon as we feel complacent and as though we’ve achieved everything it’s probably the time to throw in the towel.

Tristan: I want to pass my driving test, I need to do that.

Brad: There’s a lot of venues we’d love to headline, so maybe Wembley Stadium one day, that would be amazing and Madison Square Gardens.

What about festivals as well, obviously we’ve just had festival season but do you want to play more festivals?

Brad: Yeah.

Tristan: We played a lot last year and then this year we were focusing on the studio and stuff.

Brad: Next year fingers crossed. The crowds are always good because you get such a mixed variety of people there and then a lot of the time you have to try and win over the crowd which we love, it’s a challenge.

So what are your hobbies? What do you get up to when you’re not jet setting rock stars?

Connor: Football.

James: Yeah we like football.

Connor: Football’s good. Going to the gym.

Tristan: PS4.

Brad: I’ve just passed my driving test so at the moment I’m literally just driving everywhere.

Did you pass first time?

Brad: I did.

James: 7 minors.

Brad: I hit the curb on the way out of the test centre.

Was that after you passed?

Brad: No that was the first thing I did!

Well I guess it all worked out well in the end

Brad: Yeah [laughs].

Finally, what’s one question you’ve always wanted to be asked, but haven’t yet? Because I’m sure you’ve had to answer a lot of questions…

Connor: I like that question.


Tristan: Volvic water or Evian water?

James: I’d say Evian.

Brad: Evian.

Connor: You see Evian more than Volvic.

Tristan: I do drink Evian though, there’s something about it.

James: My sister has to drink Evian because of the salt level or something in it, it’s really weird. She was advised to do it by a doctor, I don’t know why.

Tristan: That’s so random.

James: It’s something about the salt content, I don’t know…

What about the rest of you, is there a specific question? And then I might ask it to you?

Brad: You might [laughs] I don’t know, I mean we’ve been asked a lot of questions over the years.

How many questions do you think you’ve been asked?

Brad: Um one thousand six hundred and forty eight now I think it is, including that one we just had.


The Vamps new track ’All Night’ is out this Friday 14th October, for the the latest news and upcoming tour dates head to www.thevamps.net

Words by Shannon Cotton

Photography Jack Alexander

Styling Gary Salter

Grooming Jade Farmiloe using NYR & Aveda

Shot at Loft Studios


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