We had a chat with the amazing Laura Stevenson before her show in Derby. On this UK tour she’s joined by her full band, The Cans, and we spoke about the contrast in touring with a band compared to solo, looking back on Wheel  and her plans for a new record!
How’s the tour been so far?
It’s been good. It’s nice to be in England. I got sick a couple days ago, but I don’t think I’m contagious anymore. You just kinda moved back [laughter]. I don’t think I’m contagious anymore, nobody else has gotten it. I got it from the bass player who is also my boyfriend so that would kinda make sense, but nobody else has gotten it so I’m good at containing it. But yeah, I’m bummed about that, but I’ll be okay.
Your last tour over here was a solo tour, how different is it being with the band every night?
It’s a lot different because the pressure is off me being the only person trying to engage. I’m not the only thing that’s happening. So that’s a lot of pressure especially if you’re having an off night or you’re nervous. It’s really, really fun having the band so we can just play with each other and so much is happening. It’s exciting. One show on this tour in Hamburg, it was in this residential area so I had to play solo. I was like “this sucks, we’re all here! We rented all this gear.” But it was cool, ‘cos I got to see the juxtaposition of the two types of shows. It was fun for me, but just a lot different.
What types of shows has it been in Europe? House shows and pubs?
No, no house shows. There’s been some DIY venues and some normal venues. It really just depends, there’s punk spaces and community centres and stuff.
How do you feel about Wheel looking back on it?
To listen to? I don’t like to listen to anything I’ve ever done because I start thinking about all the things I could have changed. I’m starting to think about it if I listen to anything for what I want to do on the next record. When we get home we’ll be getting down to business [laughter]. I’ll just use it as a reference for what I want to do differently.
Are you going to start writing when you get home from this tour?
Well I’ve already written a lot, it’s more of showing the songs to the band and arranging them for full band or deciding which ones will be just me. It’s gonna be really cool. I think. I hope.
How long do you normally spend working on and recording records?
It changes each time. I guess the more expensive the person is, the quicker you get it done [laughter]. I’m not sure. I want to spend more time on the next one. I don’t think we had as much time as I wanted on Wheel so hopefully we’ll get some more on the next one.
Do you think it’s the newer or older stuff which gets a bigger reception at your shows?
I think it’s more of the middle stuff actually. People really like the songs from Sit Resist . I’ve noticed though that this is the first time we’ve played a lot of the rockier Wheel songs and people have been excited to see them. I think people may have wanted to experience them but I couldn’t really showcase them because I was just solo last time I came over. So I think people like the rocky songs from Wheel, but mostly the middle songs [laughter]. I’ve peaked!
You’re on Chris Farren’s Christmas album, how did that come about?
Oh yeah. He’s just my friend and he emailed me and said “can you do this thing?” I listened to it and thought it was good. So I sang harmonies and said thank you [laughter].
It’s been on in our house constantly [laughter].
It’s great. He’s awesome. Little angel man. Christmas elf.
Do you guys see yourselves fitting in in the “punk scene”? Having the punk sound and the folk sound?
I dunno. We don’t really fit in anywhere. We’re not like cool enough to be an indie band. And we’re not punk enough to be a punk band. So we kinda just don’t make sense. So I always just say folk-rock. That’s what I tell my parents. Inoffensive music. Not a lot of swearing. But some. There is in a new song. That’s fun [laughter].