MUSIC – Enter Shikari jet in for city stop

THEY have spent the past 12 months criss-crossing the globe – but rave-metallers Enter Shikari are looking forward to rounding off the year in Glasgow.

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The lads are putting a year of globetrotting behind them with Glasgow gig
The lads are putting a year of globetrotting behind them with Glasgow gig

They have been playing everywhere recently, from recording an album in Thailand to performing before thousands of people in South Africa.

And for guitarist Rory Clewlow, being jet-setters is the best part of the job.

"When I was at school I always knew I wanted to do something in music, but I also wanted to travel, so getting to do the two at the same time is great," he says, speaking from their tour bus in America.

"Earlier this year we were in Australia, Japan and South Africa, so that was a big deal."

It was the last of those gigs, at the OppiKoppi festival, that provided Rory with his highlight of the year so far. "We've always wanted to go to Africa and it was incredible," he says. "We got there and it was in the middle of nowhere.

"There was nothing for 50 miles in any direction, just barren land and then we were walking around the festival site and it was such a diverse selection of music.

"We had no idea how many people would turn up, and when we walked on stage there were about 10,000 people there, all going crazy. They were singing the lyrics back to us and we couldn't believe it."

You might think that after experiences like that finishing the year off back home would be an anti-climax.

Yet Rory's adamant the band have several reasons to be delighted to back on home soil, especially as they are doing two nights at the Barrowland, on December 10 and 11.

"Playing the Barrowland is always a highlight," he says.

"People in Glasgow are crazy. We've got a lot of friends there, and they often bring us some Buckfast, although we never drink much before going on!

"Our sound man's from Glasgow, so he's always bringing his friends down.

"We love the Barrowland and everyone's just in a good mood when we play there. London's our home, but we have so many friends in Glasgow that it's like a second home now."

THE band's most recent album, A Flash Flood Of Colour, was recorded far from any home comforts, however.

The group chose to take their blend of electronica and metal to Thailand, with the resulting record being their highest charting album to date, at No.4.

And Rory believes the process of making it was as relaxed as you could get.

"I'd never been to Thailand before, but it was really exciting and yet really relaxing as an experience," he explains. "The studio we recorded in was one all inclusive complex with a nice studio, individual rooms, a kitchen, a fridge with never ending beer and a ping pong table. It was incredible.

"There was nothing at all to cloud your mind, none of the stresses at home or anything. It was just all about the music, and a perfect environment in which to work."

Rory believes that those surroundings also helped the four-piece create an even more diverse record than before.

Always known for mixing up styles on previous albums, 2007's Take To The Skies and 2009's Common Dreads, this time the band experimented further.

"Normally we're all over the place in an intentional fashion, but we wanted to explore more," adds Rory. "We wanted to use different influences more so than the last album. There's a more diverse feel sonically."

Despite the band's anti-establishment nature, Rory was delighted that they have cracked the charts. However, he admits he wasn't sure if A Flash Flood Of Colour would be a hit.

"You can never tell how well an album is going to do," he says. "Each time we do a new record we are sure it's our best yet, but whether everyone agrees, you never know.

"So it's always a wait-and-see process, but we are really happy with it. It got a good response from the fans and we were happy with that."

n Enter Shikari, Barrowland, December 10/11, £18, 7pm. Tickets from gigsinscotland.com

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