Jumping up and down for joy after being signed for squillions? Not if you're the Klaxons. Keyboardist and co-vocalist James Righton tells Jane Gazzo he's not even got a place to live!
Surprisingly for a group recently hailed as the forerunners of 'New Wave of New Rave', Klaxons are in a relaxed frame of mind.
“The record is done now,” says keyboardist and co-vocalist James Righton.
“We're not hanging out for it to come out. We're too busy to be honest.” Pushed for more information, he offers, “It's coming out in January. We finished recording it at the end of September and we've just been mixing it and it's all mixed and done and mastered.”
The reason for this modesty may very well be the rumour the band signed to Polydor for a rumoured £500,000. Earlier this year the South London four-piece were being courted by just about every A&R department around the country. The battle was won in August by Polydor on the agreement the band could have their own imprint label Rinse and do things their own way.
“That figure is absurdly off the mark.” Says Righton of the fee, “It wasn't a lot of money. We were offered a lot more than we got. Quite a hell of a lot more than we got but what we wanted when we signed was to sign on our own terms. I'm still on a wage earning not a lot. Just enough to pay my rent.”
Whatever they signed up for in monetary terms, it is all rather impressive considering The Klaxons formed proper in October 2005. Righton admits he only got off the musician's dole around six months ago.
“Honestly they were dark, dark days... they really do grille you. They make it really hard to get the money. We were doing gigs, like in Europe and stuff. So I was saying 'Look, I've got a gig. I've got to play in Amsterdam tomorrow so I can't come in and sign.' and they were like 'well if you don't come in and sign, you're not going to get the money, and we'll kick you off' and what do you do? It's a catch 22 situation but somehow we still managed to write some pretty happy pop music whilst we were suffering.”
Those joyful pop tunes include the indie-rave singles Atlantis to Interzone, Gravity's Rainbow and the newest single, the debut on Polydor, Magick.
“I just bought it,” he says of the new single. “I walked in HMV on Oxford Street and I took a photo of it on my camera phone. I couldn't believe it. We were below Keane and I think Jamiroquai was on the other side which was a strange place to be.”
While the music industry wonder just how much the Klaxons did sign for and whether they will go the way of FisherSpooner, (another band allegedly signed for an absurd amound of money) Righton has more pressing issues to worry about.
“I'm looking for a home at the moment because there's no real point in getting a house when we're always travelling. I'm staying on my little brother's floor. He's trying to kick me out. He's very good to me but I've got to get my own place sometime.”
Hopefully living arrangements will be made in due course after a tour of the UK, Europe and Australia. Righton confesses there's not been much time to do much of anything apart from gigs, interviews, more gigs and travelling. He's even at a loss to describe how he feels about the past twelve months.
“I don't really feel anything. I feel numb. You can't comprehend it really, because we're always so busy. We haven't really had a chance to look back and think too much about it. Which is a really good thing because we're pretty level headed and down to earth. It doesn't affect me at all or my daily life. Nothing's changed really except everyone that I speak to now just asks me about the band all the time, which is understandable.”
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