T in the Park interview: Editors

Editors are embarking on a new era. With two new members in the form of Justin Lockey and Elliot Williams, the kings of emotive odes are back with a new album, a busy summer schedule and of course, their standard stopover in Balado.

Lead singer Tom Smith of Editors. Picture: AFP/Getty

We talk to singer Tom Smith and bassist Russell Leetch about their ever adapting style, the riotous reputation of T’s roaring crowd, and how they definitely have a darker musical style than Little Mix.

This year will mark the band’s sixth stint at T in the Park. They are a familiar name for frequenters of the festival in a year that has seen something of a shakeup in the line up, but the band have been going through some changes of their own.

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Since the departure of guitarist Chris Urbanowicz, they have not only taken on two new faces, they have noticeably returned to their earlier style of song writing.

The Weight of Your Love is loaded up with guitar and lyric heavy tracks, referencing the more rustic sound that appeared all those years ago on their first album.

Their changing sound has something to do with the new additions, says Tom, as he acknowledges the impact that Justin and Elliot have had on the creative process.

“When the two new guys came in we wanted their opinions, we wanted them to help us shape these songs into the ones that are on the record now”, he says.

“But that came off the back of a dark period for the band with a year and a half of rehearsing and a recording. It wasn’t working and it wasn’t clicking, and it got darker and darker. And then that came to and end and we carried on without Chris. Then two new people came in, and suddenly there were ideas flying around. It was exciting, it was liberating. Suddenly we could work again properly.”

For some, slotting two new faces into a well established band might have been a challenge, but the boys acknowledge that they simply got lucky.

“Justin the guitarist came to us as a recommendation from Flood, and Elliot toured with us” explains Russell.

“We were lucky.” says Tom.

“We didn’t have to do any X Factor style auditions - Editors factor - we didn’t have to do any of that, because the first two guys that came in worked.”

That luck is about to be put to the test, as the band are ready to embark on a busy summer, with a slot on the Radio 1 Stage at T squeezed somewhere in the middle. They are no stranger to this festival, but are reluctant to award themselves the title of T veterans just yet.

“Snow Patrol, Travis - they’re veterans. We’re veterans in waiting”, Tom states. But veterans or not, this will be their sixth time at Balado, and they certainly know what to expect.

“T does have quite a reputation for having a kind of riotous crowd to play to”, says Tom.

“And they are, that’s true. So it’s always fun to come and play. It’s a lot of fun as a performer when the crowd are going crazy.

“But also, it’s the twentieth anniversary this year, so it’s a festival with a bit of history. It’s longstanding. It’s a tradition, so that’s important too.”

Aside from their reputation as festival staples, the band are also known for their decidedly dark, occasionally gloomy material, a label they respond to casually.

“You know, we’re darker than some bands. Our dressing room is next to Little Mix and we’re darker than them, so there is some truth in it.”

So there you have it. Darker than Little Mix, no stranger to change and ready to play to that raucous Balado crowd for the sixth time. The new era of Editors has begun.