Sitting down to stand up: FEET embrace rest and rebellion as they prepare to drop their new album, ‘Make It Up’

FEET‘s new single ‘Sit Down’ serves as a metaphorical and literal call to action against capitalist pressures, offering a moment of collective rest as a form of resistance. With their second album ‘Make It Up’ on the way, they’re a band about to “pump out a product we are all really proud of”. Check out the latest cover story for our New Music Friday playlist edit, PLAY.

Words: Stephen Ackroyd.
Photos: Millie Cope.

FEET: a name that evokes stomping rhythms, pulsating energy, and the joy of movement. And yet, the band’s most recent offering? ‘Sit Down’.

“We’re currently on set shooting the video,” guitarist Harry Southerton reveals. They’ve just had to learn their first dance routine, apparently. Doesn’t sound especially sedentary so far.

So what’s the deal with ‘Sit Down’? According to frontman George Haverson, “The triumphant parking of your derrière is an active form of protest against our capitalist overlords.” The song is “a celebration of that protest and our ongoing fight with gravity,” he explains. “We sit next to people every day of our lives, and that shared collective pause is a pretty central part of the human experience.”

While Harry envisions the ideal place to park his behind as a backyard with friends, complete with a comfortable chair, and George’s signature potato salad, George’s dream scenario is a touch more unconventional. “Honestly, I’d like to sit on top of a moving train,” he admits. “I bet that’s quite the feeling. Might need some sunglasses for the bugs.” (Dork is not advocating such a course of action – Health and Safety Ed)

‘Sit Down’ does give capital to the idea that it’s as essential to take a break as it is to push on and double down on the workload. With their second album ‘Make It Up’ imminent, the balance is something that FEET have had to work on. “It can be swings and roundabouts with this stuff,” Harry contemplates. “It’s hard sometimes to schedule time in the studio for writing, so when we get in there, we’re excited and grateful to put our ideas together. On the flip of the coin, sometimes we know if we’ve been pushing it when the completely horrific renditions of 12-bar blues occur – it’s time for some R&R.”

‘Sit Down’ serves as a bridge between the two halves of ‘Make It Up’, Harry explains. “It’s the first song on side B, so it brings the second half of the record in with a healthy dose of excitement and pace after a fairly mellow previous track to end the first. Once we’d finished mixing the tracks, we knew we wanted to place it there for a second wave of buzz to start side B.”

“There’s a real range on the album”

George Haverson

The album reflects the evolution of the band and their work, Harry considers. “We’ve come a long, long way. Recently, we’ve been going through a tonne of old demos and uploading some to a channel on our Discord – some of them can never see the light of day – but it’s taken a couple of years of honing and sharpening our sound to get to where we’re at now.”

“To have confidence in what we’re making now is the result of trial and error effectively,” he continues. “I like to think we all know now what our sound isn’t, so confusingly, by default, we all know what we’re doing.”

Considering this, and how it’s clear that the band put a huge amount of thought into what their “sound” is. Choosing which songs make the cut is a meticulous process for FEET. In the run-up to ‘Make It Up’, they’ve stated that there are “no throwaway ideas on this album” – so what makes a track a keeper? “We’ve never really had any arguments when it comes to choosing what we develop and what songs don’t make the cut,” George explains. “A new idea always seems to drift along, so if the holes are too stubborn to fix in a tune, we just move on to the next. The songs that held the most water are what you’re hearing on the album.”

The recording process for ‘Make It Up’ was a live endeavour to capture the band’s raw energy. “We were lucky to have a cracking producer in Andy Savours to help steer the ship on the recording,” George said. “It’s mostly live, so the real challenge was capturing the spirit of the song in a full take and, particularly, at the right tempo. We must have done every song about 20 times in a range of about five bpm.”

“There’s a real range on the album that will hopefully soothe any individual expectations,” he continues. “For me, the closing track is particularly special because it feels like a proper ‘band’ song. Everyone slotted into their parts pretty much immediately when we were writing it, which is always a sign of a very ‘FEET’ song.”

Excitement bubbles as George considers the future. ‘Make It Up’ isn’t just a reflection of FEET’s journey; it’s a springboard for further creative exploration. “We’ve been tinkering with the FEET machine for so long; it’s gratifying to see it finally pump out a product we are all really proud of,” he admits. “‘Make It Up’ just makes me excited now to get back in the studio and keep that assembly line churning.”

Comparing the new record to their debut, the fantastically titled ‘What’s Inside Is More Than Just Ham’, George still has love for what came before. “We are all very grateful for the platform the first album put us on and for the audiences we have now because of it,” he says. “I’d say ‘WIIMTJH’ was a decent first impression, but ‘Make It Up’ feels like more of a solid first step. No pun intended.”

With live shows to come, the band are eager to get out on the road and in front of their fans. Though they probably won’t be making the human sacrifice before each show that George jokes is a pre-show ritual (“Flickering the lights on and off really fast has a similar satanic effect”), and audiences are definitely getting in on the act. “Recently, we’ve been debuting a lot of unheard tracks,” he explains, “so it’s been a lovely surprise to see people jump around to something they would have heard for the first time.”

“Once the album is out in June we will be ramping up to play it all live in a very special album tour,” he teases. “All will be revealed later this year.” ■

FEET’s new single ‘Sit Down’ is out now. Their album ‘Make It Up’ is out 14th June. Follow Dork’s PLAY Spotify playlist here.