In the next interview in our series of interviews to mark our unveiling of our Record of the Year list, we speak to Murray Macleod of The Xcerts.
The Exeter-based trio spent the best part of 2014 hinting at the release of their third full-length. After teasing us for quite some time, ‘There Is Only You’ was released in November with outstanding results. Filled with huge choruses, the album has been described as a career highlight and one that should give the band the attention they deserve.
Already Heard questioned vocalist/guitarist Macleod about the long wait for ‘There Is Only You’, the band’s development on this record and more.
View our Record of the Year 2014 feature here.
AH: First of all congratulations on making our Top Ten Records of the Year list. What do you make of being part of the list?
Murray: I very much appreciate it. There have been a lot of great releases this year so to make the top 10 feels good. It’s not exactly something you have in mind when making a record but it definitely feels like the cherry on top of an already wonderful cake.
AH: For a lot of bands 4 years is a long time between albums. Why did it take ‘There Is Only You’ to see the light of day?
Murray: Well, we were on the road for 3 of those years and then we spent another year crafting the record. We were very militant about the songwriting process purely because we wanted to make the album as great as possible. There was also some boring music industry nonsense going on which stumped us a little but it’s super dull and uninteresting.
AH: It seems you spent the majority of 2014 teasing us with a few live dates and a single or two. Do you think it all worked well and now you’re reaping the rewards due to the acclaim ‘There Is Only You’ has received?
Murray: I definitely feel like playing sporadic shows helped us take a step back and realise a lot of people were excited about our “return”. I mean, we are still a long way away from where we want to be but everything feels really good right now. I just hope the whole thing continues to snowball, that’s the plan right now.
AH: In comparison to previous records, how have The Xcerts developed on this record?
Murray: There is a lot more thought behind the songwriting of this album. We really wanted to showcase our talents in that department and we really honed in on our love of melody. We wanted to make a real statement with this record which we hadn’t really thought about when making our previous records. We are a much more confident band these days and I think you can really hear that in ‘There Is Only You’.
AH: Like I mentioned earlier, the album has received plenty of praise from both fans and critics. Why do you think people speak so highly of the album?
Murray: Good songs and relatable lyrics. I really hope that doesn’t sound arrogant, I’m just speaking honestly and I really do think that is why the record is connecting with folks. It’s a very instant and accessible record without us having to dumb anything down.
AH: You’re currently in the middle of UK headline tour. How has it been going? How has it been transferring the new material into a live setting?
Murray: It’s been amazing so far. We have played to some packed rooms and we have played to some quiet rooms but the one thing we can take away from each show is how passionately people care about our band. That is something you can’t put a price on which fills our souls with joy!!
We feel very comfortable playing the new songs so playing half the album has been a real joy for us. A lot of people seem to be turning up wanting to hear the new material so that is very cool to witness. It’s nice to see people connecting with the new songs so quickly after its release.
AH: Looking forward into 2015, what’s next for The Xcerts?
Murray: We have a couple of releases planned and a whole lot of rocking all over the world.
‘There Is Only You’ by The Xcerts is out now on Raygun Records.