Interview: High Tyde @ Thekla

It’s rare to find a new band so down to earth and able to take the mick out of themselves, while still being serious and genuinely proud of their (quality) music. High Tyde are young, but they’ve been making and putting out music for a while, and their latest release has just seen them round the U.K. on a sell-out tour. We had a chat ahead of their crazy Bristol gig at Thekla, talking about the evolution of their music from indie pop to indie rock.

Welcome to Bristol! Have any of you been before?
Louis: Lots.
Cody: Love Bristol, yeah I think we’ve been here five or six times now.
Connor: Dot to Dot, Ratboy, Little Comets...

You supported Little Comets?
Cody: Yeah they were cool. It was The Fleece I think, that was sick.

You played your hometown of Brighton yesterday, I’m guessing that was quite special?
Cody: Mad ting. So good, and our mate got engaged on stage. Well, we kind of planned it when we were a little bit drunk and thought it was the best idea ever.
Spencer: I was so nervous as well. I was playing with my heartbeat going because we’d planned it for this right moment.

It’s been really interesting watching your style of music change over the years, how has this transition developed and who would you say are influencing your music the most right now?
Cody: I wouldn’t say it’s changed as such, it’s just evolved. Cause we’ve grown up as well, we released those [older] songs when we were 17, and now we’re all 20/21. So we listen to new music, and then write new music. It’s the progression of our band. We haven’t consciously gone alright, now we’re gonna write this type of music, it’s just the way it’s happened.
Connor: On the music probably Foals.
Cody: Catfish.
Connor: Queens of the Stone Age, the Killers.
Cody: Yeah definitely the rockier side, it’s kind of gone from indie pop...
Connor: Everyone loves the indie pop though.

How would you describe the person to your right in three words?
Cody: This is Spence, he plays lead guitar. Converse, redjumper, shred.
Spencer: Well no I actually have a yellow jumper as well... This is Louis, Louis plays drums. Louis has hair.
Louis: I’m glad about that! This is Connor, he plays guitar. Weird little man.
Connor: This is Cody, he plays bass and sings. Very funny guy.

8978-202545 is what you’re touring. It’s ten fairly short songs which you’re calling a mixtape - not an E.P., not an album. What made you want to release this body of work at this time?
Louis: Because we’re so indie.
Connor: Mixtapes are coming back!
Cody: It was a way to kind of give our time back to the fans, cause we kind of just dropped singles here and there. We wanted to release these songs, we are super proud of it, it’s our year’s work.

What do the numbers mean?
Louis: It means High Tyde on a keyboard. So if you go (*counting on fingers*) a,b,c,d,e,f,g, 8 would be the ‘h’, 9 would be the ‘i’...
Cody: We won’t do it all day...

Nearly all the songs have been released together at the same time, so it gives them equal exposure and allows favourites to emerge naturally. Do you have your personal favourites?
Connor: Exactly yeah. I like ‘So Slow’.
Cody: Yeah, which is what’s really cool. I really love ‘Alright Alright’.
Louis: ‘House on Fire’.
Spencer: ‘Alright Alright’.

‘Come In’ is my favourite, and seems to be the most popular at the moment judging from Spotify. Is there any potential for you to be doing more with it?
Cody: We were actually gonna release that at the start of last year, but then we backed out last minute and thought it was a bad idea. I think it’s just out there, it is what it is.
Connor: Probably not, onto the next... We could make a tour video though.

When you’re playing your songs live, the overwhelming majority are pretty crazy and there’s a lot of energy and noise. How does that compare to when you’re writing these songs in a much quieter setting?
Connor: It’s exactly the same.
Cody: Yeah we always imagine the song we’re writing in a live environment anyway cause it’s pointless not to, otherwise the song would just stick out like a sore thumb in our set.
Spencer: It’s always really loud when we’re recording, we’ve lost our ears.
Connor: We need to write slower songs because the set... people need to chill out at some point.

Who are you listening to a lot at the moment?
Cody: I like J Hus’s album.
Louis: Post Malone.
Connor: Kendrick Lamar, his new song.
Spencer: There’s this new song we really like, ‘Hot Drum’. It’s techy, it’s on the pre-show playlist.

Are they any plans for physical releases?
Cody: We just released all our best songs!
Connor: Well no one buys physical music anymore, it’s a shame.
Louis: Music lovers do.
Cody: I think we’re a bit scared in a way to put out an album because we don’t want it to go to waste. So if we were gonna do it, we’d want it to be huge. But if you think about it, if you go on our Spotify, there’s like 45 songs on there. They’re always bangers though. Sorry, I’m being biased... but they are.

Where next for High Tyde?
Connor: Festivals...
Louis: First up Leeds.
Cody: Then we’ve got Truck, then we’ve got a few more coming we haven’t announced yet. It’s gonna be good, it’s gonna be fun, I can’t wait for the sun to come out again. I feel like High Tyde’s always been a festival band, so we’re excited to get back in the fields.

This is a band I’d definitely recommend seeing live if you get the chance. On stage, the energy is reflected right back from the crowd, and Cody’s stage presence keeps it going for the whole set. The room is thick with atmosphere and noise, especially for bop-along fan favourites like ‘Do What You Want’ and ‘Glow.' The band will always make an effort to meet fans right after and know how to turn a whole venue into one massive mosh pit. Just make sure you bring a hairband and a loose fitting t-shirt, it’s guaranteed to get sweaty. Listen to new mixtape 8978-202545 on Spotify.

Listen to High Tyde here

Ella Faye Howcroft 

Cover Photography: Tara Atkinson

(c) Ella Faye Howcroft

(c) Ella Faye Howcroft