Interview: Mikey Chapman and Sam Douglas of Mallory Knox at Takedown Festival (Part 1)

By on Friday, 23rd March 2012 at 3:00 pm

Cambridge alt-rockers Mallory Knox recently played their first ever festival show at Southampton’s Takedown Festival to a fantastic reception. I caught up with frontman Mikey Chapman and bassist Sam Douglas to find out how it went, as well as getting the low-down on their debut album and Call Of Duty.

It’s your first-ever festival show, how was it for you?

Mikey: It was just phenomenal. We’ve always been the guys in the crowd appreciating all the different bands, running around like a headless chicken making sure you see all your favourite bands. To be up on the stage instead is amazing, it gives us a sort of gratification for what we’re doing.

Was it daunting playing the main stage with some of the biggest bands in the scene?

Sam: When we saw what the lineup was for that particular stage we were a bit like ‘Fuck! We’re playing with some really fucking good bands today.’ We were a bit nervous, it’s our first festival and bit different to a normal show, so we didn’t really know what to expect. We’ve only been going a little while and wondered ‘will people know who we really are?’, then we played that and it’s one of my favourite shows we’ve ever done.

Mikey: We’re always really keen for new people to hear us, something like this is the perfect opportunity. Someone will come out to see Don Broco or Deaf Havana and hopefully they’ll catch us.

Who are you going to try and catch today?

Sam: There’s so many. I’m really looking forward to seeing Skindred, I’ve got to be honest. We’ve got a lot of friends that we want to watch as well, I want to see Polar. because they’ve got the new album coming out, Feed the Rhino blow me away every time, but I’m a big fan of Deaf Havana as well and Don Broco. There’s so many bands, this festival is so good. Every single band is doing well in their own right and the lineup on every stage is good.

Mikey: Even if we weren’t playing I think we’d have come down to this one because there’s a lot of friends playing it and a load of really good bands as well.

You’re named after Juliette Lewis’ character in ‘Natural Born Killers’ who shot Robert Downey Jr.’s character repeatedly…

Mikey: She did enjoy that, didn’t she? She’s a little bit twisted… we’re not that twisted. We definitely don’t shoot people. On record. (laughs)

Sam: We couldn’t think of a name and we didn’t want to give it a name where you could be like ‘oh that band’s quite clearly pop-punk, or that band’s quite clearly heavy metal’, and then Joe (guitarist) came up with the idea of calling it a person’s name, and it was Mallory Knox or Dorian Gray. But then they brought that film out, ‘Dorian Gray’, so Mallory Knox it is. I’d never seen the film, if I’d known I’d have been like ‘We’re named after a murderer, man…fuck’.

Mikey: It’s quite interesting though because with Micky and Mallory Knox they have a strong relationship, they’re very much ‘in’ love, you know? But they’re so dark at the same time so it’s quite an amazing comparison, so I think we did well there.

Have you ever wanted to shoot somebody repeatedly?

Mikey: On the record, no.

Sam: On Call of Duty there was this little kid about 10 years old who kept shooting me then calling me names and stuff… no that sounds bad, like I want to shoot a ten year old (laughs). It was only on Call pf Duty I promise. He stopped me going Prestige! Down the headset he was like (high pitched) “rah rah rah rah”, I was like, “Oh my god, I’m getting mugged off by a 10 year old”. I never did get him back.

You’ve got your debut album coming out soon, can you tell us a bit about it?

Mikey: It’s been a long time coming. We finished ‘Pilot’ before we came out, so for us it’s been a year and a half in the running now.

Sam: We finished writing ‘Pilot’ in January 2010, then that came out on Wolf At Your Door last summer, so it was like a year and half ’til that came out properly. So we’ve been writing for about two and a half years, we went through some crap and it was hard to get back into it. We’d left it a year to try and write stuff, and we were writing stuff that wasn’t really what we wanted to do. But then it just clicked. We wrote one song and it’s just come from there. It’s sound is still like ‘Pilot’ but I think we’ve progressed and become better song writers. If people liked ‘Pilot’ they’re gonna like this as well.

Mikey: We’ve had a lot of new influences and new inspirations, not just musically, but in terms of the way we’re thinking. We just got older. It’s only like a year and a half but people grow up pretty quickly.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of the interview to be posted next week!

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