Sheffield band ‘The Carousel’ launched their debut EP ‘Extra Pedestrians’ at The Rocking Chair on Friday 6th February 2015 in front of a lively Steel City audience.
It was a milestone occasion for this indie four-piece, who at just 16 and 17 years old have already built up a steady following and made quite a mark on the local music scene.
For Tom Williamson (vocals, 16), Elliott Murray (guitar, 16), James Knight (bass, 16) and George Oxley (drums, 17), this chilly February Friday night saw them headline a show for the first time – and they’ve certainly earned the opportunity, with impressive showings as support acts at both the O2 Academy and Plug venues in recent months.
With their debut EP ‘Extra Pedestrians’ just released, the show takes extra importance for the band as it is a celebration of how far they have come in such a short space of time.
The frontman Tom explained how they wanted to mark the occasion of the release. “We wanted a date to put it out there, we didn’t just want it to pass, we wanted to play a gig with it”.
Being the headline act is a far cry from ‘The Carousel’s first gig. When asked about it, wry smiles and laughter immediately overcame the teenagers, who went on to describe the show with the adjectives “shocking” and “terrible” among others.
But the quartet have battled on since that day and now regularly perform excellently in front of excited crowds. And tonight at the Rocking Chair was no different.
There was a massively intimate, underground feeling to the gig as the band squeezed onto the stage and thrilled the excitable crowd who were packed into the cramped, sweaty venue.
A mixture of original material and covers were performed by the indie rockers, who played all four songs from their EP and more as well as songs by the bands that inspired them – including Kasabian, The Strokes and fellow Sheffielders Arctic Monkeys.
And just like much of AM’s early material, ‘The Carousel’ have taken plenty of inspiration from their local area. ‘Blue Route Service’ – the song that the quartet unanimously agreed is the standout track on their debut release, is named after the route of their local Supertram, whilst the band’s name is also partly-inspired by a shop in the city.
But, despite the obvious comparisons to Alex Turner and co., the band insist that their sound is different – Tom describing their style as closer to that of an early ‘White Stripes’.
With the EP released and a successful headliner under the belt, the band now prepare to move another step forward when they headline the O2 Academy on 25th April.
It is a venue that holds happy memories for the teenagers, both as fans and performers, and they are clearly very excited to return to the place that saw them “receive the best reception yet (from the crowd)” when they supported tribute band ‘Antarctic Monkeys’ back in November.
What’s to come in the next 12 months is uncertain. Ideas of a new single being released in the summer were discussed but drummer George admitted that they “don’t really have any plans!”, vocalist Tom adding that they “probably don’t have the patience to record a full album just yet!”.
Smaller goals such as finding a manger and venturing outside of their hometown for shows were mentioned as the next steps for a band that could well go far. They certainly have the belief to do so, George confidently announcing that “we have the potential” while the frontman Tom simply stating “I want it all”.
You can see the full interview below, or check out ‘The Carousel’s EP ‘Extra Pedestrians’ HERE.