Interview: Pure Love
Pure Love are Frank Carter (formerly of Gallows) and Jim Carroll (formerly of Hope Conspiracy). In a complete departure from the musical stylings of their former bands they’re writing huge straightforward rock songs and winning over crowds everywhere they go. They’re out on their first headline tour at the moment and we caught up with them ahead of their Liverpool show at The Zanzibar.
First things first, how did Pure Love come about?
Frank: We’d played a show together years ago when our old bands were on tour. We really met in New York about 3 years ago, we both wanted to do new bands and just happened to cross paths at a show and hit it off. It took us a little while to get it together but when we finally did, from then on the ideas were just flowing, and it hasn’t slowed down, it's been good.
How does it feel to be starting over again?
Jim: It's like any band when you start over, you have that initial period of figuring out exactly what you're going to do, and it kinda takes shape however it may. It really came together relatively quickly for us, songs just started flowing out of us. We were writing for a year before we actually started recording, we had a mass of songs before we signed a deal. I think everyone thinks this happened really quickly for us.
Frank: It was really slow, even slower now.
Were you apprehensive about going in a new direction, has the reception been what you were hoping for?
F: The reception’s been awesome. You never really know how this kind of thing is going to go down. There was no hesitation on our part; as soon as we started writing songs that was the direction. It was very organic, very natural, once we realised that was the way it was going we just committed to it fully. Definitely no second guessing on our part, we were just fucking straight there.
You're both based in New York but seem to be focusing on the UK right now.
F: Our record label and management are both here and they want to push it here. Although we both live in New York I’m very much fully English through and through. And I think the band’s got quite a British sound, so it just makes sense. At the end of the day we’ll go wherever the gigs are, and the moment the gigs are in the UK.
How does it feel to be playing smaller, more intimate venues?
F: This is what we’ve always done; played small gigs in both our bands. We were both in hardcore bands so small gigs is where we shine really. The difference with this band is that we’ve essentially written huge rock songs. The benefit of that is like you can take a small band and put them in small room and they’ll do great; but put them on a big stage and it’ll fall apart, whereas if you put a big band in a small room its just awesome. It's great to play small shows, I’m hoping that next year; once the album is out, we can do this same tour again, in the same venues and just repay all the people that came out to see us on this one.
I saw you supporting Biffy Clyro in Swindon, not to blow smoke up your arses but I thought you were great, the crowd certainly seemed to love you. How did that come about and did you have as much fun as you seemed to be having?
J: I think their fans and that band are just amazing. That day was just great, they were super kind to us, more than hospitable, it just put us in the right mood. If a headliner treats you like shit, it reflects in the performance. But we were all amped to be there, went out, played our hearts out, and like I said their fans were amazing, super receptive. Easily one of the best shows we’ve played so far.
F: I’ve known them for a little while, they’ve always been super nice to us. Simon sang on the last Gallows record I was on, we just remained friends. I’ve always been a big fan of the band. We didn’t even ask, they just offered it to us. I remember when I left Gallows, it was announced at Sonisphere, I was speaking to them about Pure Love, Jim and I had a whole wealth of music by that point and I was like “You’ve got to take us on tour”, really psyching them up for us, and they were true to their word. They gave us a great opportunity.
If you could get on stage with any one artist/band who would it be, why and what would you play?
J: Freddie Mercury. Push this guy [Frank] out of the way. Any song he wanted to play. There’s so many people, anyone I grew up listening to; Angus Young maybe. Whoever would be so kind to come up and play some songs with us.
If you could curate your own festival who would you invite to play?
F: Oh my god the list is too long. It would be a really eclectic festival. Fuck I don't know, I’d have weird indie rock bands, and stuff. Sorry, terrible answer, not even a single band mentioned, just “Oh it’d be so weird!”
What's next for you guys?You've got an album coming out towards the end of the year, have you got a release date yet?
F: We’ve still not sure when its coming out, the sooner the better for us. We’ve got this tour, then we’ve got Reading & Leeds. Then I’m getting married so we’re taking a bit of time off, that’ll slow things down a bit. This year's been weird; a lot of down time, and then a lot of bursts of loads of interesting shit. October we hit the road for another tour. We’re pushing to get the album out. This has been a vacation year, it's been pretty relaxed.
J: Next year we’ll go a little bit more full on and be a bit busier, hopefully. It’s definitely not arduous touring by any means. More of bigger and better hopefully.
If there was one question you wish I’d asked, or one thing you’d have liked to talk about what would it have been?
F: My buddy, Jordan, was just in a motorbike accident in L.A. He’s broken both his legs, and he’s out there, really far from home. If you could put up a link to his Instagram, its JordanFST. There’s a relief thing set up for him, his medical bills are stacking up and I’m not sure if his insurance company are going to step in or not. If people could go and check him out, he’s in a bad way, he could use all the help he could get at the minute. He’s an amazing tattooer, funniest guy, does the best De Niro impression I’ve ever seen. He’s a good guy.
If you want to help Frank's friend you can visit Jordan's Instagram page online here or simply search for JordanFST on the Instagram app.