Interview by Kelsey Hyde & Yising Kao
Photos by Yising Kao
Concert Photos: https://www.galaxy-mag.com/new-hope-club-hob-anaheim
Since signing to The Vamps’ Steady Records label under Hollywood Records in 2015, New Hope Club have released their debut EP Welcome to the Club in 2017, followed by their second EP, Welcome to the Club, Pt. 2. The British pop trio, consisting of Blake Richardson (vocals/guitar), George Smith (vocals/guitar), and Reece Bibby (vocals/bass), has toured internationally with artists such as The Vamps and Sabrina Carpenter, gaining a dedicated fanbase. This year, New Hope Club has released two new singles called “Permission” and “Love Again” along with music videos full of fun and positive vibes. We got to chat with the band before their first headline show in Anaheim about their music and more - Make sure to look out for their upcoming project!
Kelsey: Congrats on releasing your newest single, “Love Again!”
Blake: Thank you very much!
Kelsey: It’s amazing, by the way.
Blake: Thank you!
Kelsey: Can you tell us a little bit about how you came up with the concept for the music video?
Blake: Yeah, We had the song for quite a while and we came up with the concept just because I think in our previous years, we’ve like had previous relationships where we’ve not fully finished it and wanted to go back to that person and, you know, still have those feelings. I think a lot of our fans are going through that as well. And it’s something we want to write about, and the song came around, and we liked it. We kept working on it, and I think it was kind of like our song “Fixed,” one of our first songs and it’s like a development from that. So, I think that was cool to do that, and the video was just, it was quite a chill video really. We asked Bailee Madison to be in the video and she did, which was nice. It was just good. It was quite a free video with letting us do what we wanted. There wasn’t a lot of direction involved necessarily. They just put us in situations and let us be us. Which I think that was cool.
Yising: Where did you film it? The scenery is so pretty and green.
Blake: It was filmed south of England.
George: Camber Sands. There’s loads of arcades and stuff around there. Like penny arcades that are really cool, but you didn’t see that in the video though.
Yising: Your new singles have a theme of just being young and free and experiencing love. They are super upbeat and have catchy melodies!
Blake: Thank you very much.
Yising: So, is there anything new you guys wanted to try with this new album in terms of production or songwriting? Or anything you wanted to explore?
Blake: Honestly, to just better ourselves every single time is the only thing we cared about. It was never really like “We need a song like this” or “We need to go in this direction.” It’s more like just letting us be creative and just seeing where it goes. It’s the best way for anything, really.
Yising: That’s awesome! Do you have any plans for an upcoming album?
Blake: It’s coming! It’s on its way and it’s going to be good, and it’s on its way. That’s all I can say.
Kelsey: How have you felt you’ve progressed as musicians and songwriters since you started making YouTube videos in 2015? What were some of your biggest challenges?
George: We’ve gotten new guitars. We’ve just written as much as we can. You can come up with an idea from anywhere so it’s nice to just bring it together and to just work on it as a collaborative group, and also write with other people as well. It’s really nice to get other people’s take on a situation, and it can be other artists as well, which is nice. We write with The Vamps boys quite a lot.
Kelsey: “My Life” is a bop.
George: Oh, thank you, Thank you! It’s great, it’s good fun writing and getting a different think every time. You never get the same song twice, unless you copy it.
Yising: It’s really cool how you guys still make YouTube videos like how you used to do the Club Cam vlogs.
George: Oh god, don’t bring that back.
Yising: Since you’ve first started, you make videos like “A Day in the Life” and covers, which is really awesome. What drives you to keep creating these and engaging with your fans, so they see what your daily life is like?
Reece: I think from the start, we’ve always been very engaged with our fans like, they’ve been a part of the band from the very start. We do what we do, so it’s natural to show what we are doing every day, whether that’s in a video or a tweet or an Instagram post. I think we just want to share what we’re doing every day because we see what they’re doing online and yeah, it’s cool for them to be on this journey with us. We’re still building, still more and more people join our fanbase, if that’s what it’s called, every day. And it’s just cool and they can easily see what we’re doing every single day and I think that’s a good thing.
Kelsey: The last time you guys were in America you were opening for The Vamps. How is touring your own headlining tour different?
George: The Vamps aren’t here haha.
Reece: It’s so different! Basically, we’ve been supporting for quite a while. This is our first ever headline tour really, world tour. And it’s just amazing! It’s such a weird feeling to turn up to the venue knowing you’re actually playing it and it’s your venue and the people came to see you. It’s an amazing feeling and we’re very lucky. We just want to keep doing it, now that we’ve had a taste, so we don’t want to go back to supporting. I mean, whatever happens in the future, we’re just loving it, loving our own tour right now. It’s really cool.
Kelsey: Is it different having your own fans in the audience, rather than other people you may be touring with fans?
Blake: Yeah, it’s kind of nice to have a room full of your fans. It’s cool. I mean we’ve enjoyed supporting a lot. It has been fun to have been able to grow from that and love the experience, but playing our own shows and being able to go all over the world is insane.
Yising: You guys grew your fanbase internationally first and that’s cool, while you’re growing your fanbase in the U.S. too.
Blake: Yeah, it’s insane. Literally, even if it’s like 3 minutes down my road I would still be like, “That’s insane that anyone wants to come.”
George: There are big venues near your house.
Blake: There’s actually a big venue about 3 minutes away from my house. And a park.
RAPID FIRE QUESTIONS
Yising: Your single, “Start Over Again” is about doing the wrong things on a first date, so what was the worst date you’ve been on that you wish you could redo?
George: Oooh. Well, Reece.
Blake: Reece, you’ve got that.
George: Reece, you’ve got a legendary one.
Blake: I haven’t had that bad of a date.
George: He actually spilled a drink on someone.
Reece: Yeah, the first time I met this girl, it was in a bar. I had my arm on the bar, and the bartender put the pint in between, [motions in between his elbow and forearm] in between there. And I didn’t see he put the pint down and I just moved my hand and was like “Oh, hi!” and the whole pint just went all the way down her whole trousers. Luckily, she was wearing leather trousers, so. Cause she’s a biker. It just washed straight off, luckily.
Yising: So, the song was based off a true experience.
Reece: Yeah, it is haha.
Kelsey: How do American fans differ from UK fans?
Blake: I mean, we love both, obviously. I think, I don’t think, I mean there’s the accent.
George: You are just stating the obvious.
Blake: They’re both just so great. I mean, we love them all. There’s not really much difference.
Yising: Who is your biggest influence when writing music?
Blake: Our life. That’s the biggest influence. But, like, as in artist-wise or?
Yising: Singers, songwriters, you look up to.
Blake: I mean, current artists, like Ed Sheeran is probably the best writer at the moment. He’s incredible. We listen to so much old music as well. I think with older music, like if you didn’t write the song, you wouldn’t be big necessarily. Which is something we look at. So, if you want longevity, or longevity of a career, then I think you need to write your own stuff. So, I suppose I see ourselves as our biggest inspiration.
Kelsey: That’s a good answer. It’s very interesting, I’ve never heard anyone say that before.
Blake: Thank you.
Kelsey: What is some British slang that Americans might consider odd?
George: What about, well it’s not really British slang, like “cheerio?”
Blake: But no one says that.
Blake: I’ve never said “cheerio.”
Reece: It’s a bit of a stereotype, and that you said that everyone thinks, “They really do say it!”
Yising: I was listening to YUNGBLUD recently, have you heard his music?
Blake: Ah, yeah.
Yising: Well he’s more alternative but, he would sing and say the word “bollocks” and I looked it up and I was like “What?” [All the boys start to laugh]
Reece: We can’t say that one haha.
Blake: Oh, yeah.
Yising: You guys have a few different terms.
Reece: Sanos. We’ve got a shop called “Sainsbury's” (a grocery store) and we call it Sanos.
Blake: That’s just like, I don’t even know.
Reece: Well, what slang do we say? (to Blake)
Blake: There’s “class.” Like “That’s class” or “That’s sound.”
Reece: Yeah, “sound.”
Yising: Do you say “bloody” a lot?
George: Oh, yeah!
Blake: I say “bloody” quite often.
Reece: It’s actually ridiculous.
George: “That’s bloody.”
Yising: Blake, you do photography. How did you get started with that and how would you describe your style?
Blake: I haven’t posted in a while. I still take them, I just haven’t really posted. Honestly, just film camera and I just take what I see and just walk around and if I see anything just take a picture. A lot of them are rubbish, but the ones I’ve posted aren’t too bad.
Yising: Do you guys have any other hobbies?
George: We all play football. We play golf, occasionally. What else?
Blake: To be honest, we don’t really have a lot of time, so we don’t have much of any other hobbies, like right now, we just focus on the music.
Kelsey: You guys have been touring non-stop since 2016, correct?
Blake: Pretty much.
George: I have not slept since 2016.
Blake: It is a crazy time.
Yising: What’s your favorite tea flavor?
All: English Breakfast!
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Watch the "Love Again" video here!