Eyeplug recently caught up with one of the great English bands who deserve to be part of all of your musical lives more so now than ever, here are The Fallen Leaves…
01 How did you get started?
Rob Symmons and I have been close friends since the early Punk days. We wrote a bunch of songs together after Rob was booted out of The Subway Sect in 1978. But in 2004, when we decided to revisit them, what actually happened is that we wrote a whole load of new ones. These songs demanded to be performed, so Rob and I put a group together, initially of old friends. We played a lot of shows, but it really came together when Gareth Evans and a crazy Swiss drummer joined. It was this line up that recorded the first album, It’s Too Late Now, on our own Parliament Records label. Most of our releases have been self-released, but we are happy to put things out on other labels when asked. To date we have released four studio albums on CD, four vinyl singles, a compilation on vinyl and CD, and a live vinyl album. A new album and single will be recorded very soon. Our current line up, with Gareth back on bass and ex-Chords drummer Buddy Ascott, is the definitive Fallen Leaves line up.
02 Where did your name come from?
Its named after a Wilkie Collins book
03 Who are your major influences and inspirations and who do you despise?
Our major influences are “Nuggets” era garage groups, But we take it one step further; those groups were American, trying to sound English like The Rolling Stones, who were trying to sound American. We strip it right back, and sing Pop Music with an English accent. Also the early British Beat groups, like the early Who, Kinks, Pretty Things are also influences, together with real Punk Rock.
We don’t despise anybody, but we do feel sorry for people who can only trade off past glories.
04 What drives you to make music?
Apart from my BMW, a powerful need to disprove every single myth in Pop music. It’s like a drug, very hard to give up.
05 What can someone who has never seen you live before expect from your live show?
You can expect a proper show, with sound, songs, and panache. There will be no T-shirts, no jeans and no cover versions. If you can imagine a cross between the early Who and The Ramones, you might get somewhere close.
06 Who writes your songs? What types of themes and subjects do you deal with?
Green/Symmons write all the songs. French literature is a recurring theme, along with an existential pessimism, and a sense of humour.
07 How has your music evolved since you first began playing?
We try very hard not to let it evolve, that’s where The Who, Kinks and many others went wrong, We keep producing simple songs for complex people.
08 What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Were you able to overcome this? If so, how?
Getting a settled line-up. We now have the definitive line up; Green/Symmons/Evans/Ascott.
09 Do you play covers? If you could pick any song, which would you like to cover most and why?
We don’t do covers, but we do steal, although only from the best! Everybody steals, we just admit it.
10 Where do you envisage being in five years time?
Probably carrying on as we are now, as the champions of the glorious underachievers! Maybe we will have been asked to play Glastonbury, so that we can say no.
11 Who would you most like to record with?
12 What should we be expecting from you in the near future?
More of the same, lots of shows and new releases. The Fallen Leaves are always the same, but always different.
Mar 26: 7:30 PM – Portsmouth, The Loft @ The Kings Pub, £10.00 More info
May 7: 8:00 PM – Middlesbrough, The Westgarth Social Club, £11.00 More info
May 27: 8:00 PM – London, 100 Club, 100 Oxford Street, London, W1D 1LL, £14.00 More info
Jun 11: 7:00 PM – London, 100 Club, 100 Oxford Street, London, W1D 1LL, £22.00 More info
Sep 10: 8:00 PM – London, Dublin Castle More info
Sep 17: 8:00 PM – Lewes, Lewes Con Club More info
Youtube Channel: youtube.com/channel/UCvzF6PrQDcP5fb9PUy91LCQ