This Saturday, Dot to Dot festival will once again sweep Bristol’s city centre, taking over 13 venues from O2 Academy to The Gryphon. With live music running from midday to midnight, Dot to Dot 2019 will showcase hordes of undiscovered talent alongside some big names, such as Ninja Tune-singed singer songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Jordan Rakei, and party-starting alt-pop trio Crystal Fighters.
Dot to Dot has a reputation as the place to see future stars first, with previous acts including including The XX, Ed Sheeran, Mumford and Sons, Caribou, and Florence and the Machine. Just one of the acts we’re excited about at this year’s Dot to Dot is LA-based trio Mini Mansions, co-founded by Queens of the Stone Age bassist Michael Shuman, The Last Shadow Puppets bassist Zach Dawes and Arctic Monkeys associate Tyler Parkford (who has been touring with them after recording keys on their latest album).
co-founded by Queens of the Stone Age bassist Michael Shuman
Michael Shuman swaps his bass for a drum kit and guitar, while Zack and Tyler look after the bass and keys respectively – and all three take on vocal duties. Since their formation in 2009, Mini Mansions have amassed a cult following across the globe. Their sound is hard to pin down; it sits somewhere between glam rock and indie pop.
their sound sits somewhere between glam rock and indie pop
Mini Mansions have two excellent albums under their belt so far, with a third one, A Guy Walks Into a Bar…, due for release on 26 July. The album tracks released so far show the band pushing their sound in new directions, from the disco-tinged GummyBear to the pulsating and distorted Bad Things.
With Mini Mansions set to headline The Fleece’s all-day lineup at Dot to Dot festival this Saturday, we asked the band a few questions ahead of the show –
This is the largest UK tour Mini Mansions have ever been on – how do audiences in the UK compare to the US?
They’re all great from all sides of this wild world but UK’ers particularly are far more rowdy – in the bestest of ways.
UK’ers particularly are far more rowdy
Do you have any favourite UK tour stops?
Stonehenge, if not because it has perfect WiFi reception and a dedicated IP address.
Are there any UK acts you’ve had on repeat recently?
Lauran Hibberd, YAK, Insecure Men, Baxter Dury, Sons of Raphael and Miles Kane.
What do you guys look forward to most when touring?
Playing and partying, and the occasional extra spicy curry.
Last year you guys released the Works Every Time EP. Did it inform the new album in any way or help you decide which direction to go in next?
It’s sort of a parasitic little brother of the full length, so a little of both.
Disco is dead, which is probably why we like it so much
GummyBear is maybe the most disco-influenced track Mini Mansions have put out so far. Can we expect more songs like it on the new album?
Disco is dead, which is probably why we like it so much. So yes!
Are there any new songs you’ve particularly been looking forward to playing live?
The next single we’re gonna release is a lotta fun to play. It’s called I’m In Love.
Who were some of the main influences on the new album?
Hard to say, we’re kind of a goofy vacuum usually with dropping influences, but this record is definitely more 80s new wave-inspired, à la Oingo Boingo, Telex, Sparks, Talking Heads, etc.
this record is definitely more 80s new wave-inspired, à la Oingo Boingo, Telex, Sparks, Talking Heads…
On The Great Pretenders, you had some pretty big features such as Alex Turner and Brian Wilson. Can we expect any on this album?