‘We all pretty much grew up at The Forum’: An interview with Ugly Love

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The Edge caught up with Tunbridge Wells based noise makers Ugly Love at their recent Southampton show at the Joiners supporting Ashestoangels and local band DEAD. In between the banter, the unprintable jokes, and some general amusing silliness, I did manage to briefly discuss their plans for the future, some of their friends in other bands and what the music scene is like in their hometown of Tunbridge Wells. Oh, and if anyone from Critical Wave is reading this, I promise I didn’t deliberately steal your ‘interview a band in a bath’ concept, but the Joiners is a very small venue. There were five bands on that evening’s bill, and when you’re interviewing four excitable members of a rock band, you do have to put them somewhere.

How do you guys find the music scene in Tunbridge Wells? It doesn’t have the most rock and roll reputation, as towns go.

Tom: Actually, Tunbridge Wells is fine when it comes to music, because we have The Forum. It’s a little independent music venue. We all pretty much grew up at The Forum, to be honest. I’ve been going down there regularly since I was about 15 and that’s where I met all the others in the band. I tend bar there now, obviously, we play shows there, it’s pretty much my second home! If there wasn’t The Forum down there, there wouldn’t be much though. There’d probably be nowhere for us to hang out. One of our first ever shows as a band, we played at the Forum supporting Fearless Vampire Killers.

We got on really well with them actually, and I’ve been in three of their videos now! Kit [guitar]has been in some of their videos as well!

Which one did you enjoy the most?

Tom: Oh, the last one [for All Hallows Evil]definitely. That was the most fun! Everybody got drunk while dressed up as zombies! I think we all got absolutely wasted on the set of that video!

Kit [guitar]: No, it was just you! [laughs]

Tom: Okay, so me and Nico [Ashestoangels bassist] got wasted! I got drunk like a twelve year old on that video shoot!

Where’d you get the band name Ugly Love?

Sam [drums]: Well, we were meant to be called the Ugly Cunts, but no one was going to let us be called that, so we settled for Ugly Love.

Tom: No, hang on a minute, that’s not a very interesting story, we need a better one! We should make something up!

Kit: Well, actually, we’re called it because we just love too much, and we’re ugly!

Tom: Or there’s the Urban Dictionary definition of Ugly Love, which is basically when two unattractive people fall in love. Nah, I don’t like any of those, let’s stick with the cunts story! There’s no sensible answer to that question really!

How would you describe your music to someone who’s never heard it before?

Sam: Trash rock!

Kit: No, I’d call it goth pop!

Tom: No, it’s pop metal!

Sam: Is it?

Tom: Yeah, it’s pop metal. Sexy pop metal!

Glad to see you all found a genre you could agree on! Who’s your favourite band to tour with?

Sam: Well, we’ve never actually done a proper tour, but the ultimate fantasy band to tour with for me would probably be Guns ‘N’ Roses.

Tom: Or Motley Crue! [Everybody cheers]

Have you ever had a scary or otherwise overly intense fan experience?

Tom: Yes we have! Do you guys remember the woman in Brighton?

Kit: Oh my god, yeah – her!

Tom: Yeah, this woman was hanging around while were all loading our gear away after the show, and she kept annoying everyone. In the end she was annoying all the bands so much she got kicked out of the venue by security. They had to carry her out of the venue!

Kit: Again, I feel like we should make up a more exciting story at this point! Maybe something involving a dildo chainsaw?

Sam: Honestly though, mostly we have lovely fans, who are nice to us. They’re awesome.

What’s the worst gig you’ve ever played?

Kit: All of them! [laughs]

Tom: Well, we’ve done some really great shows, but there was one we played in the summer, in a place in Kent called Sheerness. It was a really hot day and there were about 150 people there, but they were all out in the beer garden, so we basically just played to the bar staff.

Sam: I was in a band once, and we played a show to one guy. One guy. And he was so drunk he thought we were The Who!

Have you got plan for any new music soon?

Sam: Nope, now we’ve written about nine songs, we’re not going to write anymore.[laughs]

Tom: Yeah, that’s it, we just can’t be bothered to write any others.

Kit: We see our music as a great film, and you don’t rewrite a great film. Unless you’re George Lucas.

Tom: We have got a little tour coming up next year though, and that’s going to be the most shows we’ve ever done in a row, so we’re all pretty excited for that. If people would like to buy tickets for it, that would be really nice otherwise we’ll have to walk to all the venues!

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