IN CONVERSATION:  Jaws the Shark
Credit: Rob Crawford


Congratulations on your second EP of 2022.  Another Day in Paradise was released in February, and your self-titled EP is set for release on 2 December via SO Recordings.  To begin could you describe any differences in the creative process of the two EPs.  Has your song creation process changed over the last year or so?
Thanks! The first one (Another Day in Paradise) was a lot more rough and ready, I didn’t really want to deviate too much from how raw and organic the original demo’s were when it came to recording the tracks in the studio. There aren’t really any overdubs and not too much more added on top of the tracks, which is how I wanted it to be at the time. With it being the first EP, I just kind of wanted to come right out of the traps quickly and be like tah-duh, here I am. With the second EP, I felt that the songs had developed somewhat and could definitely benefit from some more elements of production. ‘Destroy The World‘ for example, in my head, sounded as if it needed to be really big sounding, and so I wanted to spend a bit more time playing around with various different amps, pedals and plug-ins than I had before. Larry, who produced the EP, is also really good at helping to find that sound and applying them to the tracks. I felt this EP just needed to sound bigger in general and a little more polished than Another Day in Paradise.

Jaws the Shark sounds more self-assured, louder and more thrashy.   The opening track ‘Destroy the World‘ features Dinosaur Pile-Up.  I suspect this is a cathartic song to sing at the top of your voice! Could you explain where the inspiration came from?
It is, it’s definitely one of my favourites to play live, when we’re playing really tight and it comes in for the final chorus after the breakdown, that’s an especially satisfying moment, it’s like this huge wall of noise just hits you and I really love it.
Inspiration wise – Musically, the song came together pretty quickly and pretty easily, I was just messing around one day and accidentally left my delay pedal on with one of my overdrive pedals and liked how it sounded, the first couple notes I played are just what the intro is now, it kind of all just fell into my lap and I managed to write the rest of it that afternoon. Lyrically, it’s about how the old saying of “Save the world, get the girl” has now been flipped on it’s head, now it seems that the more money you have and the more of an arsehole you are, the more you seem to be rewarded. Hence, the chorus being about Destroying the world but getting the girl.

The backstory behind ‘Reno‘ sounds like one heck of a night.  The track is a wild ride, could you tell us a little about its origins?
Haha, yeah it was a fun time. I still look back on it now and genuinely think those couple of days were some of the best I’ve had in my life so far. Sun, casino’s, drinking, injuries, it had it all! I didn’t write the track until about a year after this had all happened though, that’s how fondly I look back on it all.  I wrote it when I was back home in my flat in London, I think it was winter time. I wrote all of the music to it first and then needed some lyrics to add on top, I just started writing about that particular time I’d had and the two kind of went hand in hand.

Would I be right in thinking that the final track ‘Didn’t Even Know What I was Looking For‘ is a love song?  
Yessirrr. I don’t think I ever set out to make it one, but lyrically it was just how I was feeling at the time of writing it. And I still do feel the same way about the person it’s written about. I was quite hesitant to show them the track once I’d written it because I can get quite embarrassed when lyrics are very on the nose in that sense, but she loves it and it worked and so all is right with the world! Haha.

Is Jaws the Shark still a duo when you play live?  I am always amazed when I listen to the music that it’s just two people as it sounds like a full band.
I mean, musically it’s still a solo project, so it’s just me really, but I have since expanded on the two piece and introduced a live bass player and another guitar player that can also play percussive parts and some keys, as well as BV’s. The only real reason I played as a two piece in the first instance was because it was easier to do that and cheaper to get up and down the country! If I’m being honest. I always had plans to expand it, if it were up to me and I had the cash, I’d probably have about eight people on stage! Maybe I will one day. I like to have things as organic as possible really, and it’s far more interesting to have a few of you on the road. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t go back to just the two and running some track from a laptop if I had to. 

Is being creative a way of processing the experiences and challenges of life for you?   And are those the main inspirations behind your songs?
For me, it’s a bit of both I think. I do like to write about things that are going on with me currently, but at the same time, I like to not be too on the nose with it all. I would like people to hear songs and be able to relate to them in their own way and I think sometimes if it’s too introspective, it can have the opposite effect. But I take each track as it comes really, sometimes being that way can be beneficial to the song, so it all depends. A lot of the songs that I write, I write them because it’s what I want to hear as a fan, I try and write music that I think I would want to listen to myself, rather than writing it for anybody else’ enjoyment. If people vibe to it as well then obviously that’s a bonus!

Looking forward to 2023 what are the plans for Jaws the Shark?  Are there gigs on the horizon?
I’m really excited for 2023, I’ve got a load more songs up my sleeve and I do want to get into the studio and get them recorded before too long. Some of which I consider to be the best stuff I’ve written so far. I think that these days it’s important to have a steady stream of releases and not wait too long between them, we all have a very short attention span these days when it comes to consuming music because it’s so readily available, so it’s all about feeding the machine and keeping on top of that so that you don’t drop off into the ether. There will be plenty of gigs though yeah! I’m already sick of winter and I can’t wait for the summer festival season to roll back around!

Jaws the Shark self-titled EP is set for release on 2 December via SO Recordings.
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