Local band give themselves a new soundBy Linda Serck
March 05, 2009
Well, after writing this I may as well get my copy of Beggars’ promo album sampler and fling it in the bin.
The jaunty gems on that disc, once the staple of the 60s and Libertines-influenced Reading band, are making way for a whole new direction in sound.
“We’re still writing pop songs,” co-frontman Justin Girdler assures me, detecting the disappointment in my voice.
“It’s not like we’ve gone into opera or something ridiculous, we’ve pushed our sound a lot recently and we’ve come up with quite a new modern twist on things.”
Beggars formed three years ago with brothers Justin and Jamie Girdler fronting a band infused with infectious harmonic pop hooks redolent of The Beatles, The Kinks and The La’s.
Now songs such as You And Me, Eulalia and Someday Too Soon are being scrapped – for good.
“We got into a lot of different music over the last few years,” says Justin.
“When we first took the band seriously we were very much 60s boys and all of our influences were coming out of that time period.
“I think we naturally started looking for newer inspiration and something a bit fresher – we’ve always been the type of band that moved on.”
Two new demos have made it on to their MySpace (www.myspace.com/beggarsband), Lie Upon Lie and Tolerate.
While the guitar-driven pop is still prevalent, the darker electronica kick to the tracks is certainly a far cry from their Beatles-esque harmonic singalongs of old.
“We wanted to have more of an upbeat thing and we wanted to bring in more synth sounds and a bit more of a funky feel to some songs,” says Justin.
He cites Michael Jackson among the band’s current influences.
“He’s got that nice mix of modern upbeat dancey sound, but with quite soully vocals and ‘pop’.”
Beggars recorded the demos with Ferg ‘500’ Peterkin, who’s worked with Depeche Mode and The Horrors.
“He’s really good with twisting knobs and making funny sounds,” Justin says.
And the band are currently holed up in the studio rehearsing and recording more songs.
“We’re really confident with the new stuff,” says Justin. “We just hope people are ready for it.
“Our songs are a lot more exciting, we’ve got some really great choruses in the new stuff and some interesting things going on.
“We’re just not the skinny-jeaned indie band that people remember from a few years ago.”
Check out Beggars at The University of Reading’s Rough Cuts night tomorrow with Fox Cubs, Midi Midis and a DJ set from Pete and the Pirates.
Doors open at 8pm and tickets are £4 or £2 with a flyer.