Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

GOING IN DEEP ; White Lies Are Grateful Their Fans Are So Committed to Their Music

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

GOING IN DEEP ; White Lies Are Grateful Their Fans Are So Committed to Their Music

Article excerpt

By DAVID SUE @DAVIDCITYLIFE BRIT-ROCK trio White Lies were just a handful of shows into their current European tour, promoting fourth album Friends, when they noticed a most unusual occurrence amongst their audiences.

"They were dancing," chuckles White Lies frontman Harry McVeigh, "And that's something of a first for our crowds! They weren't exactly busting moves, but it's the most movement we've seen at our shows. The new songs just seem to have that effect on people."

Such dancefloor infernos would have seemed inconceivable when the acclaimed trio - frontman McVeigh, alongside Charles Cave (bass) and Jack Lawrence-Brown (drums) - first formed over a decade ago in Ealing, London. Firmly setting the tone with their 2008 breakthrough single, the aptly-titled Death, White Lies indulged British rock music's penchant for angsty young men with meticulous precision. In thrall to bands such as Joy Division, Echo and the Bunnymen and Teardrop Explodes, White Lies' well-crafted gloom-rock formula - icy synths, arena-sized choruses, McVeigh's stentorian vocals - proved both alluring and lucrative, with debut LP To Lose My Life shifting 900,000 copies worldwide.

Ironically, perhaps, it's the band's gloomier disposition which has allowed them to endure. Emerging during the late-2000s, a time when, McVeigh comments, "guitar bands really had to fight to make themselves heard", White Lies have always approached their career with a glass half-empty outlook.

Treating each album they make as potentially their last, and always envisaging the worst possible critical reaction, the trio are surprised to find themselves still enriching the 2016 Brit-rock landscape - and, to their disbelief, reaching out to a newer generation of gloom-rock addicts.

"To think that we've now made four albums together is weird," McVeigh says. "And that's because we've never taken things for granted. We expect the worst case scenario. But I feel like we've been given more than a few second chances; we've been allowed to make mistakes and develop as a band.

"The most amazing thing is how we're getting new fans with each record. At gigs, I look out into the crowd and see younger fans all the time, These are kids who were five when we released our debut; and now they're at the age when they're discovering bands like us, and exploring our back catalogue. …

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