Interview: Circa Waves

Words: Benedict Watson
Photos: Zeitgeist PR
Thursday 08 December 2022
reading time: min, words

We chat with Kieran Shudall of indie-rock titans Circa Waves about their new album and upcoming Rock City show…


What are the inspirations behind the new album?
Musically I was listening to loads of Dandy Warhol stuff, that kind of stonery California vibe. Lyrically, how mad the world has been in the last two years. Being a dad, that’s weird, loads of stuff really.

How was the writing process for this album different to your previous ones?
Well, I had to write between dropping my kid off at nursery and picking him up, so it was more regimented. But with the pandemic I also had more time to write, so I wrote a couple of hundred songs for this album. A lot of bad songs, and maybe 25 good ones!

Why did you choose to release the EP so close to the album?
I think it was a case of having loads of tunes. We’ve probably got another EP after the album; we want to put loads of music out. And we’ve never put out a proper EP before, we’re just trying different ways of communicating with our fanbase.

Why is the album called Never Going Under?
We couldn’t think of anything else to be honest! Never Going Under felt quite tough and quite rocky so we were a bit aware of that, but the more the album developed it felt quite resilient, so it ended up fitting quite well really.

The more the album developed it felt quite resilient

Are you looking forward to playing Rock City in January?
Always, Rock City is always one of the best stops on the tour. We must have played Rock City about eight times now. I always have a great time in Nottingham, there’s a guitar shop I really love and that great pasta place Sexy Mamma Love Spaghetti! Rock City seems to be one of those venues that brings out the magic in people.

You wrote a Christmas song last year, what were the reasons behind that?
Well, I wanted to become financially stable for the rest of my life! But it didn’t quite reach the heady heights that I thought it might. Maybe I’ll do another one, but I feel quite bruised from the fact that it wasn’t a massive hit!

What is your favourite Circa Waves song?
I think at the moment Never Going Under is my favourite, honestly T-Shirt Weather makes me so happy, seeing people lose their minds to that song live. There’s nothing better than connecting with people like that in a big way.

When you wrote T-Shirt Weather, did you know it was going to be a hit?
I remember writing it and thinking ‘this feels better than usual’, I sent it to my A&R man and within a minute he rang me and said, ‘that’s going on the record, I’m booking you in the studio now’. But I didn’t expect it to be what it’s become.

T-Shirt Weather makes me so happy, seeing people lose their minds to that song live

Quickfire Questions

The Strokes or Arctic Monkeys?
Probably The Strokes just because Is This It is perfect to me, but I reckon I listen to Arctic Monkeys more because I prefer more of their later records.

Football or Rugby?
Football, I’m from Liverpool so football is the one!

Apart from the UK, what is your favourite country to tour?
Japan, it’s like landing on another planet. If you’ve never been to Japan, save up and go, because it’s eye-opening - it’s incredible.

What’s your favourite festival to play?
TRNSMT in Scotland is one I always love.

If you were a fruit, which fruit would you be?
That’s a stupid question! I eat a lot of bananas so maybe I’d be a banana, that’d be the most logical!


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