Louder Than War Interview: The View

The View black and white press shot

With a new album slated for 2014 The View are seeing out this year with a UK tour. And, as we found when Moscow correspondent Alexandra Rose Shebeko chatted to them, they’re backing independence for Scotland and praying for an Oasis reunion.

I caught these cheerful guys before their gig in Moscow. The latest album “Seven Year Setlist” was released in June. Now the band just finished their European tour, and the rest of the year is reserved for touring UK venues.

Happily, while exploring Europe, the View didn’t forget about some distant points. Here in Moscow the band occupied a small venue which is also a pub. This place is called 16 Tons and got this name from an old song by Merle Travis. Do you remember it? About the hardships in life for the miners. Quite suitable for its location – this area of Moscow is associated with the history of the Russian revolution of 1905.

The interior design of  16 Tons was created by a British company. Everything here reminds of the British Isles, even the drink menu (included Guinness and Newcastle Brown Ale). Russians are huge fans of the old English spirit. That’s why pubs are so popular here, and British bands always meet a very warm welcome.

We’re sitting downstairs in the pub and I’m exchanging words with Kieren Webster (bass) and Steven Morrison (drums), while Kieren is playing with a khokhloma spoon.

Louder Than War: Hello, Scottish guys, and welcome to Moscow. But…wait a minute. Do you all still live in Scotland? What is your location now?

Steven: I stay in Dundee. Other boys stay in London and Liverpool.

Which cities are your favourites in Britain?

Kieren: Glasgow is probably our favourite above all others, our favourite city to play in. Then London, Manchester and Liverpool. They all are great cities. Hm..and also Dublin (technically in Ireland – Ed).

And which are your favourite British venues?

S: The Barrowlands in Glasgow.

K: KOKO in Camden, London.

S: Yeah, it’s such a beautiful place, it looks like a theatre, originally decorated, a very good place.

K: And it used to be the Camden Palace before.

What’s the difference between playing Scottish music festivals and gigs and performing in England?

S: We are Scottish, so going back to Scotland is always good. However we’ve got dedicated fans no matter where we go.

K: In Scotland gigs are really more crazy because Scottish people are very patriotic. And, of course, they are very proud of us. So definitely there are always more craziness and fun in playing in Scotland.

The Scottish independence referendum will be held next year. Do you support the idea of separation from the UK?

S: I’d like to see Scotland succeed in being independent.

K: I don’t support the SNP, but I’m going to vote “yes” for independence. According to the economic situation, any kind of change would be better. I reckon, for working class people in Scotland there are problems with jobs and money at the moment. So any change will be a good change. And I will vote for this. But I’m not convinced that the SNP is the best government for us. Anyway, when we get independence we’ll get a chance for better governance, I suppose.

Your recent album is a compilation of songs from your typical setlists. How did you come up to make the best hits album in this way?

K: We just needed a concept for an album. And, you know, we are big fans of Oasis. They named their anniversary tour “10 Years Of Noise And Confusion”. We wanted something like that to describe our work for years. Well, they had 10 years, we have just 7.

With the anniversary of Definitely Maybe next year, do you think that Oasis will reunite again?

Both: We’re praying for it! ( Kieren is raising his hands to the sky)

What about your plans for the future?

K: We’re planning to go to the studio in January or February and record some new stuff, not the compilation, only new songs. I think the album will be out next summer. And we hope to present our new material at summer festivals.

You supported the Stone Roses and Primal Scream in Glasgow in June. Share your memories.

S: It was an amazing day. Because we played in Glasgow as well – a pleasant bonus. And we saw such heroes.

K: Supporting the Stone Roses…everyone thought that they would never see them live. Then Roses played shows in 2012. They played at T in the park, I got too drunk and couldn’t remember all their set and thought I lost my chance. But then they played again. And performing on same stage with them…it was unbelievable.

What music do you like? Do you have large record collections?

K: We’ve got bands that we all like together, we all are the fans of the Clash, Queen, the Stone Roses, British indie. But my record collection is not as big as I wish it was. Most of us were buying records in our teens on CD. But now I don’t have any CDs, only MP3s or vinyls. And I wish CDs would never been invented and I would have more vinyls. I feel cheated by CDs.

Tell us some funny stories from your tour.

S: I stole Kyle’s back bag from the room. So we went for shopping and wrapped it up and gave as a present to him. It was quite funny. We’ve got a Scottish band touring with us in Europe. And it’s always funny when ten guys come together in one bus – you know, many jokes and gags.


You can catch the View on their UK tour:

  • 23 November –  Thekla, Bristol, UK
  • 24 November –  Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea, UK
  • 26 November –  O2 Academy 2 Oxford, Oxford, UK
  • 27 November – Gloucester Guildhall,Gloucester, UK
  • 28 November – Scala, London, UK
  • 29 November – Chinnery’s, Southend, UK
  • 30 November – The Fire Station, Windsor, UK
  • 02 December – Róisín Dubh, Galway, Ireland
  • 05 December – Limelight, Belfast, UK
  • 07 December – Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff, UK
  • 08 December – O2 Academy 2 Birmingham,Birmingham, UK
  • 09 December – The Cockpit, Leeds, UK
  • 10 December – East Village Arts Club,Liverpool, UK
  • 12 December – The Ruby Lounge, Manchester, UK
  • 13 December – 53 Degrees – University Of Central Lancashire Student Union, Preston, UK
  • 14 December – The Leadmill, Sheffield, UK
  • 15 December – Hoults Yard, Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
  • 17 December – The Brickyard, Carlisle, UK
  • 18 December – O2 Academy Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  • 19 December – Ironworks, Inverness, UK
  • 20 December – Kilmarnock Grand Hall,Kilmarnock, UK
  • 21 December – The Picture House, Edinburgh, UK

Check out The View on their website, Facebook or Twitter.

Interview by Alexandra Rose Shebeko.


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