Combining the finest slacker rock with lyrical wit and impressively droll song titles, Manchester four piece Hot Shorts released their new album I Understand and I Wish to Continue on Friday. Intrigued by their tunes and party hats, we had a chat with Chris from the band to find out more…
For anyone who doesn’t know the band, can you give us a quick intro…
Hi, we are the band Hot Shorts from Manchester, England and consist of Peet (bass and vocals), Lara (drums), Joel (guitar and vocals) and myself, Chris (also guitar and vocals). We started in 2014 and while not exactly a 100% ‘comedy band’ we’re still often motivated by doing things that we find funny (even if nobody else does). Self-sabotage seems to be a recurring theme. Also ‘the internet’.
Tell us about your new album I Understand & I Wish to Continue – how long has it been in the making and what have been the highs and lows of the process?
It’s actually taken quite a while! I’m really bad at working stuff like this out but, according to Bandcamp, our last album came out in November 2016, so yeah, three years?! (Although we only practice like once a week; it wasn’t three years of gruelling twelve-hour days).
I guess the high point was actually recording it in a real studio. Up until this point, we’d just recorded everything ourselves in practice rooms but this time around we booked in five days with Michael Whalley at a studio in Bury called Big City Jacks. He was so lovely and made the whole thing really fun and painless, and yeah, it was such a great time.
I think the low point was probably when I got a sore throat the day before I did my vocals and panicked that I just wouldn’t be able to sing all my bits. (I managed to sing all my bits).
Have to ask about Dorothy, the unassuming star of your recent single My Cat is Gonna Live Forever – how is she coping with the fame and expectations of eternal life?
She seems okay so far. She’s already had a taste of ‘fame’ what with her being the cover star of our first self-titled album too (back when she was a kitten). Cool fact: the LP cover photo of her is pretty much 1:1 scale. But yeah, she’s taking it all in her stride, seemingly. (I haven’t broken it to her that she’s going to the vets for a check up next week though).
You’ve got a few live dates booked in London and Manchester, what can people expect from your shows and when might we see you elsewhere?
We’re hoping to play more gigs in 2020, especially in places that aren’t Manchester. We kind of tried to book a small tour to coincide with the release of the album, but it turns out that booking gigs in new cities is really hard and confusing. But yeah, gonna try again really soon!
Which two artists would you love to tour with, no restrictions?
If I’m allowed to say Nirvana, then I’ll say Nirvana please. If I’m not allowed to say Nirvana, I guess … a holographic Nirvana? And also Mitski who is my favourite artist who is still actually active/alive/etc. So Nirvana and Mitski, supported by the comedy band Hot Shorts. What a confusing and wonderful imaginary tour that would be.
Apart from your upcoming shows, what else is happening on the Manchester music scene that we should look out for?
There’s tons of really great bands in Manchester doing interesting stuff. Off the top of my head I would recommend: Butcher the Bar, Chew Magna, Locean, Playacting, Claw the Thin Ice, Patty Hearst, ILL, Secret Admirer, False Advertising… oh and there’s this band called Grotbags who are alright, I guess?
Plans and hopes for the future?
This is just supposed to be a fun thing really, so the fact that we’ve managed to do anything at all – been asked to play gigs, put out two albums – feels like a bonus to me. That said, I’ve got some riffs and song ideas for a possible third album, so I guess we’ll start working on those? Plus trying to play some more gigs outside of Manchester. And waiting on that call from Mitski’s people…
I Understand and I Wish to Continue was released on Friday via Icecapades Records
There’s a link to the video for My Cat is Gonna Live Forever in our previous new music feature and you can watch the video for Who Brings a Guitar to a Party? below
Interview by Siobhan
Photos via One Beat PR
29th October 2019