Q&A with The Kybosh

 

Inky Wrists caught up with Dublin band The Kybosh for a quick chat, check out our interview below!

 

How long have The Kybosh been together?

The Kybosh started off when myself (Rob) and my brother, Donal, decided to make a serious go of playing in a band when we started college. We had been playing under a different name and line-up in school and we took the best parts of that band and were lucky enough to get Brian (our guitarist) to agree to join us. He had previously helped out with recording our music and by accident, we found out that he was actually a superb classical and electric guitarist. Our drummer, Anthony, joined soon after and in 2005, we had completed the line-up as it is today.

How would you describe your sound?

It’s always hard to describe your own sound. We have always tried to sound like ourselves! But if we were to give our sound an era, it would be 80s Post-Punk/New Wave. We’ve been compared to Joy Division, Echo and the Bunnyman, early U2, Killing Joke and more recently, bands like Interpol and Muse.

The reality is, we have such a wide range of influences that there’s all sorts of ideas from bands that you wouldn’t expect. Brian (guitarist) has always been a fan of Springsteen for example, Donal and I love some good chart topping pop from every decade ranging from Sinatra through to Lady Gaga and Anthony brings an Indie sensibility to the drums.

In your press release, you talk about the importance of taking time to hone your music. Do you feel that your sound has evolved since you started out?

Our sound has slowly evolved over the last three years and we have consistently sought to improve every aspect of the music we create. From the writing process, through to the recording and post-production phase. The recording of Rubicon in 2007 and our mini-album ‘Until We Are Lost’ in 2008 was largely a home-recording job with external mixing and mastering, whereas, Ignorance was completely recorded with a producer/engineer (Jimmy Eadie – Asylum Studios). I think people would hear a steady maturing process if they listened to our stuff chronologically.

Where we’re at now with Ignorance is that we have a sound that we are really, really happy with. We have the Indie guitar rock that we began with, but we now layer the music with keys, synth and other instruments and we seem to really be coming into our own. We feel more confident, more experienced and very much ready to record the debut album!

Where did you get the name ‘The Kybosh’ from?

The word ‘Kybosh’ comes from the Irish word ‘Caipín bháis’ which literally means ‘death cap’. Nowadays it means ‘to put an end to something’. For example ‘that puts the kybosh on our plans…’. We just thought that it would work well as our band name.

Since you’re a Dublin-based band, what are your favourite things about the city? Any recommendations we should know about?

My favourite things about the city would have to be some of the great clubs and venues we have. I’ve always loved my nights out in Whelan’s and The Village, and I also love the general buzz of areas like Stephen’s Green and O’Connell street. Seeing that it’s near enough, I also love Christmas in Dublin. The lights, the shops and general merriment! Most of the band actually live out nearer to Wicklow, so we’re quiet fond of the contrast between city and suburbs/countryside. We like being able to escape sometimes!

So who writes the songs? Is it a collaborative effort or does one person tend to take the lead?

When I spoke earlier about a slow and steady maturing process, writing would be one of the main things that has evolved steadily within the band. When we started out, it was Donal (lead singer and guitarist) who brought an almost complete song to the table for the rest of us to add our music around. What we have now, is a completely democratic writing process. We bring our ideas into a room and jam with them until we have a fully crafted song. Then Donal writes his lyrics and we play with the final song until it sounds right. We feel that this collaborative process lends itself to much stronger song writing, as you have 4 voices rather than one. Most of our 2008 mini-album Until We Are Lost and all of Ignorance would be written by the four of us. The only thing that Donal has complete control over would be the lyrics. As a result, Donal would generally determine what the theme would be for our music, and we’re happy with this dynamic.

What are your plans – any upcoming gigs we should know about?

Well, we’ve finished the initial drive behind the release of Ignorance. Our video for the single, Ignorance, is up online here and we had a great gig in Whelans on October 6th to launch the EP. We’ve been taking it very slow as it was 2008 when we last released something, so we would like to build momentum over the coming months. We’ve a great gig planned for The Workman’s Club on Dec 1st and we are also planning another music video. After that, we’d like to really focus on the album, and attempt a bit of a tour around Ireland, which we haven’t done since 2007.

You can buy the new EP on iTunes and you can find more info on facebook.com/thekybosh.

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