>> The Slow Readers Club are an indie-electro-pop band from Manchester! The band is made up of four very talented musicians, Aaron Starkie (vocals / keyboard), Kurtis Starkie (vocals / guitar), James Ryan (bass), and David Whitworth (drums). The band recently released an acoustic album and it is absolutely beautiful! Check out our interview with the band about the origin of their name, what they like to do in their free time, their music, and touring!
How did you come up with the name “The Slow Readers Club”?
When I was moving from junior school to senior school I remember being taken on a tour of all the different classrooms, English room, Science lab and the like. One room we came to had a sign on the door that read ‘Special Needs’. I thought it was a strange prospect that you could be removed from the mainstream of education and thought in a different room. It was a bit scary at the time. The Slow Readers Club is meant as a bit of a two fingers up at that really, it’s about championing the underdog. As a council estate kid, I’ve always had a bit of a chip on my shoulder I guess about the advantages afforded those from different backgrounds and the fact that we don’t compete on a level playing field, there’s a bit of that in it too. Your latest EP, ‘For All Here to Observe’, is different than anything you’ve done before– it’s acoustic! What made you decide to do an acoustic album full of previously recorded songs?
We had done a few acoustic shows and radio sessions and they have always been well received. It’s also an opportunity to explore different treatments of the songs both instrumentally and vocally. Most of the songs were recorded in one or two takes, it was a very natural, old school process. We all really got a kick out of it.
How did you choose the songs for ‘For All Here to Observe’, and what made you want to strip them back?
Some of the tracks translate pretty easily, ‘Block Out The Sun’ and I ‘Saw A Ghost’ for example have been performed acoustically a few times in the past. But we also wanted to include both newer tracks and songs that you wouldn’t necessarily think would work. ‘On the TV’ is a perfect example of that really, that’s probably the track that had the most radical re-work.
Do you think you will release more acoustic versions of other songs in the future, either as singles or a follow-up album?
Yeah could well do as these tracks have gone down really well.
You also released a studio album earlier this year titled ‘Build a Tower’. Could you tell us a bit about it?
It’s our first album released with a record label (Modern Sky) and it was written in a shorter time period than our two previous self-released albums. We write uplifting indie/electro music, with great hooks and existentialist lyrics. It entered the UK charts at number 18 which was a big moment for us. It’s also gone down great on tour. Stand out tracks that people should check out are "Lunatic", "You Opened Up My Heart", "Supernatural", and "On the TV".
You’re currently touring around Europe; do you have any plans to bring your tour to North America in the New Year?
Nothing in the diary as yet but it’s definitely an ambition to get out to the states. One that we will hopefully realize soon.
What are some of your must-haves while out on the road?
Peanut M&Ms, Peroni, Water, Nintendo Switch and Mario Kart, Jakemans throat sweets, and an 80's Spotify playlist for the van.
Outside of music, what else do you guys enjoy doing? Is there anything in particular that keeps
your creativity flowing?
Personally movies, Netflix, Gaming, I go for a run when I can. Spend a lot of time doing stuff with my family, like taking my son skateboarding. The other lads are into football and boxing – I have no clue about boxing so I sit out those whats app conversations.
Since you’re The Slow Readers Club, do you enjoy reading? If so, what is your favorite book and why?
Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse because it speaks to my miserabilist soul.
Who are you guys listening to currently?
A quick scan down my recently played tracks on Spotify playlist – Elvis, Yazoo, Giorgio Moroder, David Bowie, Bon Iver, Wolf Alice, Chvrches, Foals, and Simon and Garfunkel ☺ <<