When Manchester-bred, indie rockers Everything Everything descended upon Canadian soil for the first time in the almost ten years since their formation, the quartet really had no idea what to expect. As soon as their set on the main stage of Time Festival in Toronto kicked off, it was clear that the band could find themselves at home here. They were met with an overwhelmingly positive response from the crowd, complete with super fans donning EE merchandise and proudly holding handmade drawings of each member above their heads. It was evident that the groups dynamic and thoughtful third album Get To Heaven, released in June of last year, had translated overseas. Following their stellar debut, I sat down for a quick chat with Jonathan Higgs and Alex Robertshaw of Everything Everything in the cool comfort of their trailer.
Northern Transmissions: How was your set? How do you feel about it?
Jonathan Higgs: Awesome. It went really well.
Alex Robertshaw: It was good. Hot.
NT: I know this is your first Toronto show but this was also your first Canadian show, correct?
JH: Yep. Absolutely first.
NT: Wow, that’s crazy. And you liked it? You felt good about it?
JH: Yeah, really good. We didn’t know what to expect at all, we thought there’d be two people there.
AR: We’ll have to come back and do a club show. Go on like a full length thing.
NT: Yes, absolutely. You have a few remaining North American dates left on this run?
JH: We’ve got one more left in Washington –
AR: And then we’re home.
JH: But we just did Boston and New York.
NT:And it was sold out?
AR: Pretty much, yeah.
NT: I heard about the little girl in the front of the crowd (during the set) with the Everything Everything shirt.
JH: Yeah, we’re gonna go out and find her in a bit. She had little pictures of us.
AR: I saw her in the front and she was sort of panicking. I just wanted to go down there and give that girl a hug.
NT: How have you found the reception over in North America, compared to that back home in the UK?
AR: It’s good! Very loud.
JH: Really good.
NT: You were recently on tour with The Joy Formidable.
JH: Yeah, we were opening for them. We went to loads of places that we’ve never been in the States, so that was just weird. It was really good to get there though. People have been waiting for us to come out for a long time and finally we came, so it’s good.
NT: How was the tour? You played SXSW earlier this year as well. I feel like you’ve really broken some ground over here (in North America) this year, so far.
AR: It was an amazing sort of adventure for us, really. We’ve never done anything like that in America. We’ve always just come in, done New York and then LA, and come home. So to start off at South by and actually road trip around and see the countryside, mainly. That was the most impressive thing. It’s a beautiful place.
NT: You all co-produced your most recent album Get To Heaven. What’s the importance of being hands on with your albums?
JH: It’s cheap. *laughs* No but seriously, when you’ve got to pay a producer, that time is hugely valuable. If you can do 60% yourself to the same or similar level and then bring them in to finesse it, you can make a much better thing because we don’t need to pay ourselves. It does make a big difference. We’ve learned over the years how to record ourselves.
AR: Also you sort of get to take control for a longer time. You actually guide the song to where we think it should be. Some producer might come in there and totally destroy what makes us who we are.
NT: Absolutely. Did you learn how to produce by yourselves? Was it just something you were genuinely interested in?
JH: We’ve all been recording in our bedrooms for years and years and years. Over the years, we’ve gotten a lot better at it. A couple of us did it at uni and things like that, so we got some extra skills there. But technology is moving so fast that you really don’t need much now to make a good sound. With a laptop and a mic, you can do most things which is pretty cool.
NT: That’s great. Who are some dream North American bands or artists that you would love to tour with?
AR: There’s loads of bands I like but I wouldn’t want to tour with them because that would just get too weird. David Guetta would be good, Deerhoof would be a laugh. I’d love to tour with the original lineup of Smashing Pumpkins.
JH: Oh god, yeah.
AR: I heard they’re coming back so maybe we have a shot.
NT: What’s next for Everything Everything?
JH: We’re doing a few more festivals and writing the new album. We’re disappearing for a while to do that.
Interview by Ava Muir