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Peterborough’s Tu Amore formed in 2011 and to avoid being compared to any band or genre, the band picked an Italian name to give them a sense of mystery. And surprisingly, it works, as their forthcoming EP ‘Your Love’ is a refreshing collection of soulful, Alternative rock that comfortably draws you in with tracks like ‘Birds In A Cage’ and ‘Speranza’, containing dynamic instrumentation and soaring vocals from Benjamyn Mackereth.
In addition their sound has a raw, passionate tone that thrives off the bands urgent energy, whilst lyrically they cover dark and despair topics that provide a haunting, atmospheric tone to their sound; think later Thrice releases. It’s also clear the quartet have benefited from playing shows with Futures, Hildamay, and Hawthorne Heights, as ‘Your Love’ is a focused and confident release that should get people excited. Because of this, Tu Amore are the perfect candidate for our “Recommends” feature which highlights the best in new music!
We caught up with Benjamyn Mackereth to discuss the bands unusual name, ;Your Love,’ working with Mallory Knox’s Mikey Chapman, their forthcoming music video, future plans and more.
Already Heard: Could you introduce yourself and tell us tour role in Tu Amore?
Benjamyn: Hey! My name is Benjamyn I sing and write songs for Tu Amore.
AH: First of all you’re an English band with an Italian name. What’s the meaning or story behind the Tu Amore name?
Benjamyn: This is something we get asked all the time. It’s a bit personal really. Its kinda like my own in joke but yeah it came from not wanting to use an English name and coinciding with a trip to Italy (Venice). When you pick and English name it gives an impression for what you might sound like before anyone has heard you, so we chose foreign words to escape that.
AH: For new listeners, can you describe your sound and who would you compare it to?
Benjamyn: We like to leave a lot of that up to them. We simply exist. You can’t really define what you are, that is for others to decide for there own and for me that is vital for discovering new music.
AH: Are you influenced by any of those comparisons?
Benjamyn: We have influences but that tends to go hand in hand with borderline plagiarism. We certainly see something one day that made us want to do it. For me it was people like Tom Delonge and Tom Morello. Rad people like that that I wanted to emulate but I don’t think you can hear them in our music. My favourite band is Bright Eyes. A lot of our songs believe it or not originate from acoustic toward that style then they get twisted when we take them to practice.
AH: You’re releasing an EP soon called ‘Your Love.’ What can new and old fans expect from it?
Benjamyn: I guess the thing that stands out for me is the diversity. We have electronic tracks,acoustic tracks, “Alt rock” tracks. Hopefully there is a constant for people to see but enough variety for everyone.
AH: From hearing ‘Your Love’ I get the impression that lyrically the EP is somewhat personal?
Benjamyn: Most of the time it is. I think as an artist you have to use what you know and what you have experienced to remain genuine, however I wouldn’t want to be limited to that. Part of it is empathising for other peoples situations though as well as second person points of view, so its not always personal. It’s healthy for it to be that way. We can’t always write introspective - self-centered and ostentatious drivel. Some of our songs attack subjects like religion, sexuality, drugs and love. It’s never meant to be easy to listen to and for that part I haven’t really found form for that. What you hear is a sound “snapshot” of what its like to be young, full of ambition but trapped in an office job struggling in a shit city
AH: One track on the EP, ‘Speranza’ sees you collaborating with Mallory Knox’s Mikey Chapman. How did that come together?
Benjamyn: Our second ever show as a band was with them and we got on really well. We then toured with them within a few weeks. For an emerging artist that are getting lots of well deserved praise and recognition, they are still humble and still incredibly understanding. I have had the pleasure of meeting a lot of new friends through playing in various bands but rarely do you find a set of people you admire as much as some of your idols. I mean it. I have a lot of time for them. Mikey agreed to sing on the track and he got up ridiculously early in the morning and got on a train from Ely to Southampton. Where we recorded at the Ranch Production House. He nailed it in one take but we took a second just to make sure he wasn’t using some sort of Jedi mind trick on us. It was amazing.
AH: Which track from ‘Your Love’ best represents Tu Amore?
Benjamyn: The song that best represents the band is “Wishing Well” simply because its a unity song. The subject matter is an ode to all of the bands out there that do what we do and shell out tons of money just to sit in a van all day with loads of guys and go play shows and stuff. All the whisky drinking, axe slayers out there that slum it the hard way. It’s a band song about a band and we all sings the vocals at one point in the track which is a fun part of the set and something we hadn’t done before. The chorus is also my favourite on the record.
AH: Let’s talk about your live show. In the past you’ve played with bands such as Futures, Your Demise, Hildamay, and Hawthorne Heights. How have these shows helped developed Tu Amore as a band?
Benjamyn: It has been immense. It has meant that we have had to be at our best from day one. In previous projects we didn’t recognise these opportunities and now as you get older you want all of them to last forever so you make the most when you get up there on stage.
AH: How would you describe your live show?
Benjamyn: We have a bit of riffage and some heavier stuff here and there but mainly its building an atmosphere.
AH: Along with the EP release, I understand you’re planning a new video. Can you tell us about that?
Benjamyn: We’d like to keep this one secret as there are a few aspects in (the) final stages however we are recording it next Friday (September 14th) so hopefully we can tie it in with the release at some point.
AH: Looking past ‘Your Love’ and the new video, what’s next for Tu Amore?
Benjamyn: I feel that this is a strong record but we can give more and we have already started the writing process for a full length album. We’ve targeted for a summer release next year. We recorded this EP believe it or not at the end of April and its just out now, so we are already working on stuff now for recording in possibly February or March. Hopefully we will have a tour to announce shortly also before the end of the year.
AH: Finally why should Already Heard readers give Tu Amore a listen?
Benjamyn: For all of the above
‘Your Love’ by Tu Amore is released on October 1st on iTunes.
Words by Sean Reid (@SeanReid86)