Walt Disco: “Hopefully we can appeal to people who feel a bit different”

Walt Disco have a raft of top-notch tunes and vintage punk-infused indie-bops.

Glasgow’s Walt Disco are going from strength to strength this year. With sets supporting the likes of Sports Team, Black Futures and Interpol on tour, and festival appearances at city buzz-fests Live at Leeds and The Great Escape – they’ve certainly had a lot on.

Playing London’s Electric Ballroom with fellow hype-merchants Sports Team was a particular highlight, lead singer James Potter explains. “We only found out the day before that we were playing it as the support had pulled out and we were playing the rest of the tour. It was the biggest stage we’ve played. It was amazing.”

It’s no surprise that they’ve found themselves so booked up with gigs though, they’ve been turning heads with their raucous live shows for a while now. “Everyone is a great musician in the band, we don’t have to worry whether anyone is going to play a part right, they just will,” says James. “I’ve always found being on stage for a show a bit easier than being in the studio, people can listen to your music at home, so you’ve got to give them something more when you’re live, people are paying for a show.”

Their tour with Sports Team saw them venture out of Scotland and down south, visiting places that some of them had never been to before such as Margate and Oxford. Following this stint with ten days on the road with Black Futures, and Walt Disco have well and truly been thrown in the deep end when it comes to living life on the road. “It’s not like a movie, not that mental,” James laughs, adding” “Being in a moving vehicle when you’re hungover… that’s not fun.”

They survived though and luckily for us, haven’t been put off too much. Having recently released ‘Strange To Know Nothing’, recording in London with Chris from Catholic Action and Seth from Sistertalk, the track is an 80s-infused indie dance bop that quickly leaves a lasting impression. “I wanted it to be this grand dance track,” James reveals, explaining that they wanted to see how much ridiculousness they could fit into a three-minute track.

A quick listen to the lyrics, and it’s clear that there’s more to the band than ridiculousness, however. “I wrote it in November, it’s kind of about – and I’ve never been in this situation, but lots of people have – being stuck in a relationship that you want to be in because there’s still something there, but at the same time, it also feels stale. It’s conflicting.”

Speaking about the severe 80s vibes on the track, James is quick to tell us about the albums they used as references including those from Simple Minds, The Associates and even Queen. “I love that music, and we’re obviously very influenced by it. We have these main influences which have made us a band, but we definitely won’t sound like it forever, we want to move forward from that sound,” he explains.

It’s not just 80s music that they’re taking reference from, as James reveals that PC music such as SOPHIE as well as music from St. Vincent and Bjork are current favourites. “They’re influenced by the same things that we are, but they’re doing something grand and modern and new that it becomes a completely new thing.”

So, what’s in store for Walt Disco? James wants it to be “as theatrical as possible with more modern instruments,” but overall, they want to make music that people can relate to and can help to positively impact them. “Hopefully we can appeal to the people who feel a bit different. The people who were quiet when they were younger but didn’t feel like that person, they just didn’t know how to express it,” James tells us, “I know that when I was younger, there were bands that made me feel better and helped me express myself more.”

They’ve got the B-side to ‘Strange To Know Nothing’ coming out very soon, a Scottish headline tour booked in for later this year and for those elsewhere in the country, we hear that they have a pretty hefty support slot that will take them “in all parts of the UK”, so keep your eyes peeled for that.

As for more new material, they’re desperate to get back in the studio, trying to fit studio time in between touring and writing. “We want to write a whole album’s worth of material,” James reveals. “It won’t necessarily make the album, but just as a writing exercise.”

2019 is set to continue being a great year for Walt Disco by the sounds of it, but what’s their end goal? World domination? Awards? No, James has revealed that the ultimate achievement for him would be “for someone to write an opera or musical using our music.”

Taken from the August issue of Dork, out now.

Words: Samantha Daly

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