A Conversation with Traams

In the downstairs of this Southampton club venue are Seize the Chair, TRAAMS’ tour buddies, microwaving apples and howling in disgust as they carry them over to the table.


Lead singer Stuart Hopkins asks the giddy lot to leave as he laughs because he “can’t do it with you here”.

Tonight is the last night of the trio’s UK tour, and drummer Adam rubs his eyes as he says “I’m torn, because, I want to go home so badly, because I am so knackered and I’m dying. But as soon as I’m home I’m gonna be gutted that I’m not on tour

“this tour has been great though, Seize the Chair are awesome cos they’re just like us –fucking idiots”

Leigh- “this has been one of my favourite tours, if not the favourite.”

Stuart- “the UK is usually pretty hard work because we’re not that massive here. But, Europe…you just getting treated like U2 everywhere you go! Really good food and every venue is amazing. The UK is just a little more hard work; but in a sort of fun way. But it’s been really fun actually, Seize the Chair have made it a good laugh.”

Have you got any tour horror stories or does it all go swimmingly all the time?

Stuart- “we got our van stolen in Barcelona and that SUCKED. I think the worst one is just getting ill. Like, a couple of Seize the Chair are moany little…(laughs). You just try and drink through it, but…

“we booked a hotel for the wrong month for this tour though. We turned up and started arguing with this guy, like, ‘we’ve got our booking…it’s for April.”

What’s your idea of a ‘TRAAMS super-tour’?

Leigh- “it would be a little bit longer than this but not too long. I reckon about two weeks straight, in Europe.”

Stu- “It would be in a massive bus, like a hotel bus”

Adam-“We’d get Meatloaf to drive it. And he could support us every night!”

What was the writing process like for a solid album like ‘Modern Dancing’?

Leigh- “it was the first time we knew we were gonna make an album. We’d done a handful of releases and EPs which were really awesome but I’d like to think the album sounds a bit more put together.

We’re chuffed with everything we’ve done but ‘Modern Dancing’ is the first time we’ve gone, ‘right, let’s do all of this’.”

Stu- “I think we felt less pressure with this because we sort of felt like a hype band at first. So we started to feel less pressure to be all…’trendy’ and that. It felt more like we had to up our game a little bit and actually do something that was a body of work as opposed to something that was of its year. We didn’t want to make the same thing twice. We all like bands who develop”

Leigh- “we’ll always be happy with it no matter where it goes because that’s what we enjoy about it; looking at a band’s catalogue and thinking: ‘how the hell did they get from there…to there?’”

As a band that’s difficult to pinpoint into a genre, who would you say are your influences?

Stu- “There’s loads of really great bands, and we get to play with a lot of them. Like, Eagulls, Menace Beach…”

Leigh- “it’s like, Let’s Wrestle for me, are some of the greatest songwriters out there for a long time. They really influenced our sound although I think they kind of stopped now which is a shame.”

Stu- “Yeah we’ve always had trouble slotting ourselves into a genre or describe ourselves. I’d be quite happy to say we could fit in Marc Riley’s radio show though. He doesn’t really play anything that I think is duff, y’know. He plays old and new across a range of genres but all with that sort of same ilk.

“I don’t feel like we could sit in an NME or Kerrang! camp. I’m the worst sort of person for saying I hate everything, but…there’s something for everyone isn’t there? You just gotta get into music and have a bit of fucking passion and a bit of zest for it”

Leigh- “That’s what I kinda like about labels in a way; that people can relate to things regardless if it’s been done before”

What’s next for TRAAMS? Anything in the grapevine?

Stu- “Gonna do a new album mate. Really excited, it’s gonna be weird.”

…why is it going to be weird?

Stu- “why? Because we’ve done the first one, we’ve done the second one, and now we can do what the fuck we want!”

I would take that last statement as both a promise and a threat…

Dev Place – @SquadUp_



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