Froth interview: From a joke to a successful touring band.

Ahead of their UK tour, which hits Birmingham's Hare and Hounds, Jordan Foster caught up with bassist of LA garage rock outfit Froth. Jeremy Katz chats about their new record and what he likes most about touring the UK.

Skiddle Staff

Last updated: 29th Mar 2017

Image: FROTH

You get the impression that West Coast alt-rockers FROTH just want to have fun. Forming in 2012, the burgeoning group have stemmed from a humble, semi-serious joke beginning, where they vowed to put out a record consisting of just twenty minutes of silence and not being able to play an instrument at all.

They've since developed and evolved into an internationally touring outfit, and with learning how to create their own brand of fuzzy shoegaze style rock, they've unleashed it onto unsuspecting music fans - the silent record still remains unreleased. The Los Angeles quartet since becoming a success story completely by accident. 

Hours after a North American tour and on the eve of a bumper worldwide schedule, we catch up with band member Jeremy Katz to get the lowdown on their 2017 plans. The LA-born bassist talks Saint Lauren, SXSW and why British fans should be frothing at the mouths to see them during their upcoming tour.

So how did the band name actually come about?

It was actually more of a joke, we grew up surfing and frothing is a surfing term that a lot of Australian people use.

A lot is going on for you guys this year. Firstly, you’ve recently dropped an album, are you happy with how it's been received?

It seems pretty good, it feels like it’s been received better in the UK and Europe, but that’s how it has always been for us.

What tracks are you most satisfied with from the record?

For me personally, I really like the song 'Petals', it’s my favourite on the album. As well as the second song, 'Shut The Windows', that's another favourite of mine. But yeah, I’m pretty proud of the whole album.

Glancing at your tour schedule, it looks absolutely nonstop, how're you gonna survive this without succumbing to sleep deprivation?

Yeah, I don’t know! The album came out and we’re basically on tour until mid-September. We just got back last night from a month out on the road and I’m pretty exhausted. We have two weeks off now and then we’re gone for another two months.

Going back to the beginnings, I read that some members of the band initially barely knew how to play an instrument – that’s quite inspirational given the traction you’re now gaining. How did the less experienced members gain confidence so quickly?

When we started, me and Joojoo [lead singer], had never played in bands, Joojoo had only been playing guitar for a couple of months and could barely sing. I had never played an instrument before the band.

At the beginning it was just fun and a lot of jamming. Then our drummer Cameron joined the band - he was a really good drummer - so it kind of made it easier for us to get better. He was basically like the glue that held it all together. Once we started playing with him we started getting better because he was something solid that was holding it all down, you know? 

Given the band started as just a bit of fun and a joke, did you ever believe it would reach the scale it is now at?

No, definitely not! 

A few years ago Saint Lauren featured one of your songs and used two of the band members as models in one of their fashion shows – how did that come about?

Hedi Slimane [a Saint Lauren designer] was always in California going to all these shows around the Burger Records scene. We were playing once and he was there shooting photos, and yeah he liked one of our songs and asked us to write, a fifteen-minute version of it for the show.

At that point, that was the coolest thing that ever happened to any of us.

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Was this a point where you thought you’d made it?

Getting a free trip to the other side of the world was pretty awesome, we had never even toured at that point. We were like freakin’ out, getting flown out to Paris.

I think it was not that we had made it, but maybe a point where it was like "oh, this is actually a serious thing". 

And how big do you think you would want FROTH to be in the future? 

We really just want to expose our music to as many people as possible! I mean the fame is awesome too. I definitely think about the fame sometimes, but for me, it’s more about making cool albums – that’s always the end goal.

How did Los Angeles shape the band?

When we started there was a really strong scene, this whole scene was kinda blooming around Echo Park. There were so many bands - all my friends were in bands. Lollipop Records were around. Everyone was just playing shows and hangin’ out with each other. So that definitely helped shape our band, because of what was going on in our neighbourhood.

Outside of LA, what has become the most enjoyable part of the USA to perform in?

I think we all really enjoy touring on the West Coast, just because it’s kind of like a vacation – it’s so beautiful. There's a lot of stuff to do, the drive’s not very long and the crowds are always great. We also love playing in Texas – our band does really well in Texas for some reason, we don’t know why.

I’m originally from Florida so we actually always end up going down to Miami – not a lot of bands go there on tour. We basically do all the edges of the United States; the whole middle is a bit shit!

You played at this year’s SXSW – there’s actually a lot of buzz surrounding the event in England when it comes around. Top music journalists tend to flock over there to report back. Is it as great as it’s cut out to be?

I personally kind of hated it! I mean I always end up having fun when I’m there for two days just because I’m seeing tonnes of friends and seeing people, but I think for a band like us it’s totally a waste of time and money in my opinion. 

Maybe for a show-goer from the UK or Europe it’s fun cos you wanna see loads of bands, but it’s insane man. It's expensive and tiring, it’s just ridiculous! I think the first time I went, I had a much better time than I have the last three times I’ve gone.

We’ve seen multiple foreign artists on the bill at SXSW turned away this year due to their nationality; do you think Trump’s Presidency will continue to stifle an influx of touring international talent into the US?

I hope not, but I think you never know what that guy’s capable of – so probably. It seems like he just does everything that’s shitty for everyone else.

So what is getting you excited about making the journey across the pond to perform in Britain?

We all always enjoy coming over there, I’m personally excited about going to Glasgow for the first time which is somewhere I’ve always wanted to go. We’re going to Manchester as well – another place I’ve never been – and Bristol. Just a bunch of new cities in England. It's always our favourite place to play so we’re super excited.

What sort of gig can fans expect from you in the UK?

You can definitely expect to hear the songs a little faster than they are on the record – that’s something we do accidently all the time. We’re trying to incorporate some visual stuff during the next tour and trying to keep the energy high, I guess they’ll have to come out and see for themselves!

The band come to Birmingham's Hare and Hounds on Wednesday 7th June.

You can get Froth tickets via the box below

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