Dead Naked Hippies talk about new Leeds compilation album Come Stay With Me

Leeds label Come Play With Me has released a new compilation album today, we had a chat with Dead Naked Hippies’ Lucy Jowett to get the idea behind the project.

It’s an eclectic mix. But that’s no bad thing as there isn’t a bad track on the album.

Leeds label Come Play With Me has released a lockdown themed compilation album called Come Stay With Me.

We would suggest it’s worth a look.

Dead Naked Hippies are a firm favourite in this house, and when we saw they had a track on the album, we decided a chat with Lucy Jowett was in order to find out a bit more. And, anyway, it’s nice to talk to people.

P3dro: The first question we always ask is “Where are you and what are you doing?”

Lucy: I’m in Leeds in my flat, not doing a lot today, just got my feet up and hanging out with the cat. With all this staying at home, I just spend an insane amount of time with my cat. It’s so peaceful.

P3dro: How’s life in general, over the last 3 or 4 months?

Lucy: It’s been strange, really slow. But also, me and Joe the guitarist (we live together) we’ve also kept ourselves busy in this kind of little creative bubble. We’ve been keeping Dead Naked Hippies alive in different ways from what we hay have thought. We can’t play live shows, we haven’t been able to access our rehearsal space.

But we have recording equipment here. Joe loves synths and stuff, so we’ve just been working on music under the umbrella of Dead Naked Hippies, but in different ways. It felt like a calm bit of a storm, I guess.

P3dro: So, have you been writing any new music?

Lucy: Yes, we have. The song we released on the Come Play With Me compilation was a re-work of an existing song. We’ve been playing around with some re-works of our stuff as well.

P3dro: Tell us a bit about the label, Come Play With Me.

Lucy: They’re usually a Leeds based singles club. They have done a lot of 7″ single releases. We’ve been on one of those before – a split double A-side. And we were picked for another Women In Music collab. Now in the light of Covid, they decided to do a bigger release – the album release [with 13 Leeds bands].

They [donated] either a demo or something they’d worked on in lockdown, or a re-work, or a remix. It’s to give back to the artists in the Leeds community while it’s so uncertain for us all.

P3dro: [The album] is quite an eclectic mix and a wide range of music styles. From Dead Naked Hippies and DENSE, who are quite heavy, to Talkboy, who almost sound a bit country, and a bit of rap on there as well.

Lucy: Yes. Come Play With Me is quite inclusive as a singles club. They work across all genres. It feels like in Leeds we have a wide appreciation for what everybody does. Come Play With Me is really awesome for championing that.

P3dro: How would you describe the Leeds music scene?

Lucy: Very alive. There’s always so much going on here. There’s a big community. We’re very lucky to have Come Play with Me and other record labels like Clue Records. We have another organisation called Music Leeds who offer support and advice to musicians and artists across the board of all levels and genres. There’s lots going on in Leeds. It’s good for heavy and post punk. And, of course, there’s the Brudendell Social Club. Pre-Covid, there was always someone great passing through the city.

P3dro: How does Dead Naked Hippies fit into that scene?

Lucy: It’s quite a weird one for us, really. We’ve been a band for about 4 years. For the first year, we played quite a lot of shows here, but after that, we spent quite a lot of time travelling up and down the country. Last year, we only played Leeds twice, I think. [Leeds] is definitely home, and it’s always really lovely when we do play shows here – the crowds here are awesome.

P3dro: Do you feel a sense of competition [with other bands] or a sense of community?

Lucy: Always community. I think if you ask who’s bigger or better, then that’s such a bad way to be. Music’s such a hard thing to pursue – we all need to be supportive of each other. Because other people’s success is definitely not your failure. Always community and support.

P3dro: Is that what you feel has come out of the Come Stay With Me project?

I think so. As for the artists – we’ve all been put in the same boat. It’s quite an interesting one because as band, whether it be a small band or a big band, you have your moments when you’re gearing up to release something, you’re doing lots of live dates. It feels kind of strange at the moment – there’s no touring to support any releases. It’s been a bit of a quiet moment for everybody.

There’s definitely a sense of support and it’s a nice way for a load of bands to come together.

P3dro: Has Dead Naked Hippies got any plans to release anything in the near future?

Lucy: Yeah, we do. As I say, we’ve been working on some alternate Dead Naked Hippies stuff, which most likely will see the light of day. Also, pre all of this we’d also been into the recording studio working on more music – a bigger body of work, which is quite exciting.

P3dro: I know it’s an often asked question at the moment, but where do you see the future for gigs?

Lucy: It’s so difficult. I guess some days there’s a level of optimism that gigs will be back soon, but in terms of logistics and safety, I don’t thing anybody knows, because even if the Government says its OK to go ahead, there’s a general feeling that it’s still not safe to do that. I couldn’t predict. It’s obviously really, really rubbish – the longer it goes on.

P3dro: Yeah, that’s one way of putting it. Had you got any gigs lined up?

Lucy: Yeah, mainly for this year it was festivals. We hadn’t yet booked our own tour, but we would have done that for later in the year – we didn’t get that far. So anything we do now will be for next year.

It feels like a long time to wait. In my head, because of what’s been happening, I feel like I’m still living in March, even though I know it’s July now. But [March 2021] is a year away – what are we gonna do?

P3dro: Can you recommend a band or an album that you think we should be listening to?

Lucy: Oh, that’s quite easy, really. There’s a really great band from Leeds who have just released their debut album amid all of this strange chaos. A band called Team Picture – they’re on the Come Stay With Me compilation. Their debut album is called The Menace of Mechanical Music. It’s very, very good.

P3dro: Is there anything else you want to declare?

Lucy: I cut my own fringe with a pair of scissors the other day.

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