So who better to play the district’s main stage, Poco Loco than Submotion Orchestra? A live seven-piece band from Leeds who take inspiration from dubstep, jazz and soul ‐ creeping dynamics and rumbling bass transports the audience to euphoric heights. Breakthrough album Finest Hour cemented them as a must‐see on the festival circuit and generally as a live show. They will be performing songs from their newest release Colour Theory.
First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me. As a seven-piece band, how do you write your music in a way that reflects all of you?
When we started out it was easygoing just Dubstep Dubstep Dubstep making those sounds was uncharted territory for a live band so it was exciting to get the opportunity to get experimental. During the writing stage for the last two albums it was only natural for us the branch out into new musical styles so now it can be tricky, imagine 7 people all pulling the cart in different directions. That happens sometimes but as we all get to add our own input into each song we end up with results we’re all happy with.
Boomtown is known for being a platform for a wide range of genres and a site that celebrates underground music. How has it been performing as a band that could have been perceived as purely underground?
Not that any live band wants to be compartmentalised but it has been interesting finding out the different ways people perceive our sound. We can be invited to play a really chilled sit‐down‐and‐listen beard‐stroking Jazz festival one night then on stage after a banging Dubstep DJ in a dark sweaty nightclub the next. It’s fun adjusting the set accordingly. It all still gives us the freedom for creative expression.
You’ve said in past interviews that you’re roots began in dubstep, which was and remains a predominantly electronic genre. What made you want to explore the live aspect?
Uncharted territory mainly. Speaking for myself (Danny T Submo’s Percussionist) I had already experimented with various live forms of dance music House, Techno and Drum & Bass since the mid 90’s.
You’ll performing on the Poco Loco stage at Boomtown this year, what should people expect who are yet to discover you or see you live?
Sweet and sultry vocals curtesy of singer Ruby Wood. Thunderous sub bass and intricate interweaving percussive patterns.
This will be your first year at Boomtown, what drew you to our city? Have you heard much about it? What are you looking forward to the most?
The thrill of exploring new festivals is unmatched, you never know what to expect. It doesn’t matter where in the world you are, once you get onsite people change, drop their boundaries and let go.
People have described Boomtown as a fully immersive, theatrical experience that leaves them with lasting memories. Your live performances are similarly immersive; how do you go about translating the recording to the stage?
The studio is a place to really open up the parameters and create new sounds but it’s physically impossible to bring all that equipment on the road. The compromise requires long rehearsals and a vat of coffee. We try to get it as accurate as possible. The joy of playing live means you can always take it that bit further. The vibe of being in the presence of people creating live music has no comparison really.
In your extensive festival experience, what has been your favourite memory or proudest moment?
Over the years we’ve played at some amazing festivals with fantastic crowds, sharing the stage with some huge acts. The list could go on and on but to top it all: At Love Supreme festival last summer Ruby announced to the band she was having a baby that’s got to be our proudest moment.