Last month, alternative four-piece New York Tourists released their brand new single titled ‘Only For The Summer’ and if you haven’t heard it, then you’re missing out.
Based in Blackburn and consisting of Gary Taylor on lead vocals and guitar, Carl Rutherford on vocals and guitar, Adrian Mckenzie on bass and Joe Mooney on drums, New York Tourists have been likened to 2016 rock giants Foals and its easy to see why. Their brand new single ‘Only For The Summer’ is an exciting track, from a band with an equally exciting sound – one that cannot be put to one side. The infectious rhythm and punchy melody stick to you like glue, making you believe, momentarily, that you’re listening to a debut single from a rising fresh faced band, except with more direction.
But New York Tourists are hardly a new band. Forming in 2010, the band already have six years of experience to build on, something that can be heard in their recent release. “Carl and I were part of the original line up with three other lads”, says Taylor. “We’ve been through some lineup changes since and eventually settled on us four idiots. Great bunch though!”
And he’s not wrong. Although their sound has shape-shifted and progressed through the years, there’s still an obvious aspect that has remained. Maybe its Taylor’s signature vocals that tear through each track like bullets, or possibly the bands loaded sound that’s screaming for a venue big enough to contain it. A developing sound is something that usually happens naturally, but was this an intentional move from the band? “A mixture of both I suppose. We sort of started out like a dirty rock ‘n’ roll band, but felt a little pigeon holed – like we couldn’t venture out of those four walls. Now, we just write whatever we think sounds good, which makes us feel a little more free to do what we want.”
Whatever the case their popularity is most definitely on the up, helped by the release of ‘You + Me’, an album funded by a Kickstarter campaign set up by the band. New York Tourists are not alone in this, with more and more musicians turning to fundraising to help record, produce and release new music. “We have put so much of our own money into this band, regarding gear and recording etc, that we hit a point where we couldn’t physically add any more money ourselves,” says Taylor, voicing a problem that many bands like them face. “So we toyed with the idea of a Kickstarter campaign and smashed our target by over £1000, which just shows how much of a dedicated following we have. It sounds so cliche but we really couldn’t have done it without them.”
Maybe that’s the real point of Kickstarter, a company that helps to bring creative projects to life, especially for musicians; to build a dedicated following and fanbase, who can contribute something to help impact the music they love. “We knew we had a decent following, but the support we received from everyone was amazing. We didn’t actually realise just how much of a dedicated following we had.” As Taylor says “People helping to fund your record just because they want to hear it so badly; that’s a great feeling to have.”
So with their expanding group of fans and brand new single, what else is on the cards for New York Tourists, as we head into another year? “We’re looking to tour a little more than usual next year. I think our plan is to totally conquer the North. Also the festival scene is a must, nothing beats playing festivals!”. Their sound is more than perfect for a festival set-up, whilst images of Taylor crowd surfing Yannis Philippakis-style can’t help but creep into my head. Maybe that’s what the future holds for the band; huge crowds, big sounds and even more great music.
And if you were wondering if there’s a cool story behind their name, you’re mistaken. “A few of us have been to New York, it’s still on my to do list at the moment….. I mean we’ve all been to Blackpool but “Blackpool Tourists” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.” Word of advice guys, don’t change your name to Blackpool Tourists. It’s definitely not as cool.