Real Friends returned to play Slam Dunk Festival 2016, Leeds for the second time. Here’s what vocalist Dan Lambton and bassist Kyle Fasel had to say.
How are feeling about playing Slam Dunk Festival’s 10th anniversary?
Dan – It’s awesome. We played two years ago in 2014 but this is no different we’re still super stoked, there’s a ton of great bands and I’m also very stoked to see Set Your Goals. I haven’t seen them in a very long time.
So how have you guys progressed since playing here two years ago?
Kyle – Well we just released an album so there’s that. We’ve been to the UK only one other time after that. Our set in in 2014 was great but I’m hoping for today to be even better which could be great.
Yeah, the album was released yesterday, for those who haven’t already listened to it, why should they?
Kyle – I think it’s just a real honest record, there’s no gimmicks it’s just very real. What we wanted to write about was what we felt and song writing wise it was just the next step for us. It’s natural progression, there’s nothing forced. We’ve never claimed to be a ground-breaking band but I’m proud of the record, we’re all proud of it. It’s a great representation of Real Friends.
How has your music changed since your Eps and the last full length album?
Kyle – I think we’ve just progressed, y’know we’ve matured, every band says that but they say that though ‘cause it actually does happen. You get older, you find more techniques, you go through different things in life to write about as well. I think it definitely is a bit more in a timeless direction I guess. We don’t put ourselves in a box, not that we ever really did but when we write more songs now, we do step outside more of what we were even a couple years ago.
Would you say it’s easier to write songs now that you’ve been together for so long?
Dan – I’d say about the same, yeah that hasn’t changed.
Kyle – If anything it might be harder ‘cause we’re pickier than we were.
You’re coming back to the UK in December what can fans look forward to from the tour?
Dan – More new songs if they like the album (laughs). We’re bringing over Kuckle Puck and With Confidence who are both also very awesome bands. I just hope that they can expect a kick ass show. That’s really all we can give them.
Other than yourselves, who should people go see today?
Dan – The Starting Line, Set Your Goals and Every Time I Die.
Kyle – I’d say The Starting Line for sure. A little bit of Moose Blood too. It’s kinda wild how many people are here this early, it’s honestly pretty insane. The Story So Far will be pretty cool. Our stage (The Key Club Stage) is just packed with good bands.
Apart from touring the new album, is there anything else coming up you’re particularly excited for?
Dan – Warped Tour. We’re doing Warped Tour in the States and it’s always such a great time. We did it before the same year we did Slam Dunk, we did the whole thing and then we did a couple of the dates in 2013. It’s nice ‘cause like Slam Dunk it’s got a really diverse line-up which means everyone can come and be able to get something out of it. It’s something that in all the years that I’ve gone I’ve always found at least three bands that really justify being able to go there and I kind of preferred it ‘cause there’s less clashing.
So apart from that, what’s your favourite thing about playing festivals?
Kyle – Actually, funny thing, I actually don’t like playing festivals BUT I really do enjoy Slam Dunk. Sometimes festivals, for being in a band, a lot of things are spread out and everything but Slam Dunk is very organised and everyone is very nice. And of course the fans are great, we wouldn’t be here without them. But yeah I think Slam Dunk is totally different, it has its own kind of vibe.
Dan – I like that they take over the city too.