For some bands it can take years to “make it” and live life in a band full-time, for others it can happen over night. That is what has happened for London quintet Counterfeit. Formed only last summer, a debut EP in the form of ‘Come Get Some’ arrived at the back end of 2015. Coming in at just under 10 minutes, the EP proves to be a short yet sharp set of adrenaline-fuelled punk rock that carry themselves with plenty of swagger and bite.
With actor Jamie Campbell Bower fronting the band, it’s clear why Counterfeit have gain plenty of attention. However after a riotous debut London show shortly followed by European dates, it is clear they’re not just another “actor turned musician” project. Counterfeit are the real deal.
Now as they prepare for their first headline UK tour as well their debut full-length, Already Heard had the chance to speak to Jamie about the tour, new material and their new members.
AH: It looks like it’s been an exciting few months for you off the back of ‘Come Get Some’ EP. How is the overall mood in Counterfeit camp at the moment?
Morale is high. We came off our first headline European tour a few weeks back and it feels good to know that the songs work out on the road. Theres a nervous energy at the moment as we’re itching to get back out on the road. I’m writing. But all is well.
AH: You’ve also gained a couple of members too. How did Sam Bower and Jimmy Craig come on board?
When it came to writing the record I always knew we’d have to have a 3rd guitarist. Now some may say thats gratuitous. I say it ain’t. There’s underlying guitar lines, vocal harmonies, screams and general hoof on the record and I needed that onstage.
Sam is my brother (probably guessed that with the whole having the same name thing) and I always knew he was a killer guitarist, so it was a no brainer when it came to getting someone in to pick up these extra vibes.
Jimmy has been a friend for a long time, he’s also the brother of one of our managers (keeping the whole family thing going), I’d seen him play a lot when I was younger and knew that he was a phenomenal drummer, so again when it came to picking someone it was easy.
I also knew that both these boys are A. The coolest motherfuckers and B. Would gel really well on the road with the other two. Jimmy has played a lot and done a lot of touring so he knows the routine which is good for the others. Sam has a similar ear to me so knows exactly what I’m banging on about when I say things like “it needs to be more "garhhhhh” rather than “arghhhh”.“ It works. Well. Really really well.
AH: And now you’re preparing for your first headline shows in the UK and Europe. How would you sum up a Counterfeit show to someone who hasn’t seen you before?
Jamie: Sweaty. Sweary. Old time fun. At the end of the day we want people to have a good time. For us it’s all about audience participation. You’ll find me jumping on you. Probably sweating on you. I want you to do the same. We feed off the audience’s energy. It’s a hectic show. I’m generally pretty broken after a gig and can’t talk until the next show.
AH: Are you apprehensive at all doing headline shows just months after you formed?
Jamie: Of course. I think we’d be apprehensive even if we were 3rd support on someone else’s tour. But naturally taking this beast out on a headline is scary. I mean it’s up to us to try and fill these venues. People will be watching and judging us. We’re in a very privileged position to be able to do a headline tour so early on in this bands lifetime, and we don’t take that for granted at all. We’d be stoked to play one show in a grotty pub somewhere, so for us this is mind boggling.
AH: Earlier we mentioned the ‘Come Get Some’ EP. Have you been working on new material and can we expect to hear it on the tour?
Jamie: YES! Our next single is coming out very soon, so watch this space. And as I mentioned, I’ve been writing since we came off tour. Somehow the songs seem to be getting louder. I’m not sure how. So we’ll be testing a few of those out to see how they go down. But our set, even before these new songs, was running at about 50 minutes to an hourm so we’ve got enough in the bag to keep the audience happy. I hope.
‘Come Get Some’ EP by Counterfeit is out now on Check On Records.
Counterfeit will be touring the UK next month:
18th Rock City Basement, Nottingham
19th King Tuts, Glasgow
20th Deaf Institue, Manchester
21st O2 Institue, Birmingham
23rd Electric Ballroom, London
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)