We caught up with Manchester’s Spring King after their storming set on the NME/Radio 1 stage at Reading. Here’s what they had to say on the festival, weird fans and whether they’d consider a Main Stage slot.
Did you guys ever go to Reading or Leeds when you were younger?
Tarek Musa (vocals, drums): “Reading and Leeds were always somewhere I wanted to go to. But I could never get enough mates together or find the cash. It was always a dream to make it here.”
Zane Lowe playing you as the first ever track on his Beats 1 show is what really helped catapult you to where you are now. Did you get any warning?
Andy Morton (guitars): “No, we weren’t given any warning whatsoever. Pete was at work, Tarek was in the studio, James was at work.”
James Green (bass) : “Yeah, I thought about checking the Guardian Live blog [of the Beats 1 launch], but decided I couldn’t be arsed.”
Tarek: “I remember getting a text saying, ‘Congratulations’ and I was like what for? My emails were just going insane. Took about five days for it to sink in, and I just got drunk for five days.”
Tarek: “I can’t wait for that one to be a question on pub quizzes.”
James: “No-one’s gonna get it.”
Tarek, you sing and play drums, which must be hard…
Andy: “I feel really bad for him. I’ll be on stage and sometimes I’ll have a bit when I’m not doing anything and I’m really tired. Then I look over and Tarek’s using every single limb and his voice at the same time.”
Tarek: “The hardest song for me is ‘Who Are You?’ because it’s so syncopated and the vocals are so off with the drums. We all leave drenched in sweat. As long as one of us is sweaty or one of us is throwing up we know it’s been a great show. Giving it everything we’ve got, that’s what it’s about.”
How do you maintain the energy of your shows on the bigger stages you’ve been playing recently?
Tarek: “It’s just about people going absolutely nuts. I just focus on the people having a good time, it could be massive or tiny, as long as people are jumping around I’m good.”
Andy: “You could see the dust clouds from where the pits were forming today. It’s weird seeing that, just mental.”
What has been your weirdest fan encounter?
Andy: “We played in Manchester and there was this girl in the front row going, ‘Andy! Andy!’ so I said, ‘Hey, what’s up?’ and she says, ‘Have this!’ and just hands me 50p.”
James: “You look like you need it, mate…”
And finally, Festival Republic last year, NME/Radio 1 Stage this year – so Main Stage next year?
Tarek: “Yeah, if the offer’s right, maybe we’ll do Main Stage next year! This has been a dream come true, anything from here is great. We’ll play anything, anywhere.”
James: “I kind of prefer this. The Main Stage is amazing but I prefer being in a tent. If we could just stick here or go back to Festival Republic and climb the bill there that’d be amazing.”
Originally published as part of NME/University of Reading’s Reading Festival coverage at: http://readinglive.nme.com/