Earlier this week I gave you the recap on the Auburn, WA stop for Vans Warped Tour 2016 and I mentioned we would have interviews to follow. As promised, here is the first one with London’s own Julia Sykes of Sykes.
Brandon: I just got done watching your set, it was awesome!
Julia: Thank you!
Brandon: How have you been enjoying Warped Tour?
Julia: Oh it’s been amazing. It’s kind of coming to a bittersweet end tomorrow. It’s been such a great summer, probably the best yet, we have had a great time.
Brandon: Well like I said, it was an awesome set. I will make sure I get on my fellow Washingtonians for beating the heat in the seats rather than being in the pit, it was worth it!
Brandon: Nice to see so many though even up in the seats enjoying the show. So tell us a little bit about yourselves.
Julia: Yeah, so we are Sykes. My name is Julia and I play synth and sing. We are from London and met at University. A few years ago me and Kris were in another band and Will was in another band and then we moved to London about two years ago and got together and haven’t looked back since.
Brandon: I am not sure if you’ve toured the states much yet, but is it intimidating coming on a tour like this from across the pond?
Julia: Yeah, this is the biggest tour we’ve ever done and it’s our first U.S. tour. It’s a lot of firsts, it’s our first tour bus (laughs). We’re just having an amazing time, but yeah it was pretty intimidating. The most intimidating thing is when we made the poster with all the dates and then looked at it and were like “Oh my God…” and just before that we went on tour with The Summer Set in the UK, so it just added to our stops. I can’t believe it’s just coming to an end now.
Brandon: I was looking at the fact that you guys did every single stop. I mean some bands do half and that alone is a lot.
Julia: Oh yeah! It really has gone so quickly. The first week felt like a month though! We were just trying to figure out what was going on because Warped Tour is unlike any other tour.
Brandon: What was your first impression of the states?
Julia: Well we had been to the states before, just not on tour, but we did play at SXSW this year in Texas and we did CMJ in New York, so we had a little taste of big cities. It’s been a cultural experience for sure, everyone is so nice here though. Everyone is so hyped up about the festival, it’s like a happy little bubble.
Brandon: What is the most memorable stop you’ve had on Vans Warped Tour so far?
Julia: The California dates were amazing because I hadn’t been to California before. Pomona in particular was just a great show. And then Minnesota…it was one that just sticks out for me, because it was just a great show, the crowd was just loving it. St. Louis as well, because we had the most amazing spot. Our stage was parted with one of the main stages and so it was Sum 41, us, and then Good Charlotte. We woke up that day and were like “Oh my God!”
Brandon: I imagine that would be pretty incredible. Many of these bands have to be bands you grew up with right?
Julia: Yeah absolutely. Good Charlotte was one of my first ever gigs. In fact it WAS my first ever gig. So that was really awesome, being able to talk to them and tell them that. I know Will was inspired a lot by Sum 41, we would always wait for their video to come on MTV. It has been quite surreal meeting these bigger bands and they’ve been so lovely as well, so it’s been great.
Brandon: You mention you play synth and you’re the lead singer, but you were shredding pretty hard at the end of that last set…
Julia: I was….
Brandon: You like to surprise people huh?
Julia: I do, yeah. So when the band started off a long time ago, I used to play guitar all the time. The synth is actually the newest side, I always played piano though. I am classically trained. Whenever we wrote music we’d always have a piano there and it’s always been a big part of our songwriting. The last little bit though, I have been geeking out on synths and progressively the band’s sound has been heading that direction.
Brandon: Well the guitar was great as well. When I saw you bring it out, I was like “oh wow, she’s not just playing a couple chords here.”
Brandon: That was awesome, it was great.
Julia: Thank you!
Julia: Oh yeah, I mean The Heirs are our best buddies on tour. He played with us in Albuquerque as well, it’s been a lot of fun getting him on stage with us. We love those guys.
Brandon: After Warped Tour is over, where are you guys headed?
Julia: We’ve just released an EP called Younger Mind and it came out in July. We’re just in the middle of releasing it really, we’ve never been away from home releasing an EP and this one is a big deal for us. We’re headed to L.A. first to do a show on the 18th of August at Hotel Cafe and then we go back to London where we’ll have some things to announce. People can keep up with that on Facebook.com/sykesmusic. Also on Twitter and Instagram where we’re under @sykesmsusic.
Editor in Chief of Lemonade Magazine
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