Club Decode Meet Declan McKenna 

We caught up with Declan McKenna ahead of his sold out headline show at Glasgows King Tuts! Give it a read below as we talk his upcoming new album, St. Vincent and touring! 


What made you want to pursue a career in music? 

Enjoying it I guess. Liking putting energy into creating different things. Just loving music and constantly being surrounded by it, I think everyone learns kinda learns to really enjoy. I think everyone loves being surrounded by it so it felt like a really sort of natural path for me to take.
So you’re mid-way through a UK tour just now, how has it been so far?
It’s been good so far! It’s been really tiring, we’ve had a lot of early starts and late nights and stuff but the reactions we’ve had at each place have made it worth it. These are some of the biggest shows we’ve done as headlines so it’s been really really cool to kind of experience the whole headline tour thing over the last couple of months. Yeah these last few dates have been really great in particular!
Has there been a particular standout date or date you’re looking forward to? 

The gig in Manchester was probably the one to beat, I mean it’s quite an obvious one cause it’s the biggest one we’ve done yet but hat was such a fantastic crowd and a great venue and it felt like everything really came together. Although I’m really looking forward to London, we’re playing Heaven and again that’ll be one of the biggest ones we’ve done so I’m really super excited for that one, I can’t wait! Obviously with like being from close to London, it’s a really big deal playing Heaven.
For anyone who hasn’t seen you live before, what can people anticipate from your live shows? 

I guess like balloons
So balloons and a couple of songs, y’know a bit of boogieing, general jumping up and down *laughs* yeah just a generally good time. Oh confetti too, we’ve got confetti on this tour which I’m really happy about, although the other day in Belfast I twisted the confetti cannon and it just kept twisting round and didn’t do anything so I just like poked the top and threw all the confetti into the crowd and people were grabbing it and throwing it up in the air but yeah, confetti!
So overall we’ve got confetti!

So your new album ‘What Do You Think About The Car?’ Is now available for pre-order, what was the writing process behind it? 

It was hectic, a lot of things kinda all happened at once due to I guess trying to work on an album while touring and meeting labels and all that stuff that comes with it. Which was interesting but yeah it was very chaotic being caught in between writing and recording in between everything else I was doing which was cool but I’ve kind of come out with an album which is sort of very reflective of that time period and that confused way but yeah it’s cool.
What was the inspiration behind the album or at least some of the album? 

It’s quite hard because I like never really thought of it as an album in its entirety, more just songs and maybe then like the last few songs I was kinda like right this is going towards an album, which I think is what a lot of artists do when they are writing their first album. When they’ve got all this stuff going on and they kinda know that they need to get their shit together and get the album finished, which was definitely the case with me. I think the themes behind the songs are definitely reflective of the last two or three years of my life when I started playing more shows and seeing more people listening to my stuff. I guess seeing stuff written about yourself and seeing a different perception of yourself and in a sense trying to control it and keep your own perception of yourself at the same time. Not letting other people’s opinions of you get in the way of what you’re doing. A lot of that confusion and the questioning that goes into it, I mean the title of the album is a question and another two song titles on the album are questions so questioning and confusion are definitely the common themes that are running behind the tracks
What can people anticipate from the tracks that haven’t been released yet?

Hopefully they’ll like them y’know that’s the main thing but Uhm I guess there’s a load of guitars and singing *laughs* there’s kind of well what I’m trying to aim for is somewhere between David Bowie and Abba
That is definitely the general aim I’m going for!
You’ve got a total of five singles out from your due to be released album, how are you feeling about the reception they’ve received so far? 

I’m feeling pretty good! We were obviously going beforehand, like before the past two or three years so it’s really nice to see everything y’know moving so fast and getting such a great reception. The songs I’ve put out have had an amazing reception and definitely have come out in the best case scenario and done better than I could have ever anticipated and I’ve had so much support so yeah it’s been pretty sick actually!
What’s been a standout moment from the past year? 

There’s been a few things actually, one was when we were supporting Blossoms in Leeds and I jumped off the stage and I didn’t realise how tall it was and three times I just fell and ate shit three times and then the fourth time I managed to get up and it was really nice everyone cheered and clapped!
So apart from the album what can fans anticipate from the next six months?
Hopefully no breakdowns just loads of touring! *laughs* yeah just loads and loads of touring, we’ve got a couple of cool music videos and things too! Just a few artsy projects that I’m going to try and work on, a few projects now that I’ve finished the album. I guess it just all kind of gets a bit all consuming so it’s nice to get away so I’ll be touring the album and then starting work on the second one!
The first gig you ever went to?

My sister took me to my first gig and it was Hoodie Allen *Laughs* the first gig I actually paid for myself was The Leisure Society which was cool cause they DM’d me recently as well
If you could have written any song ever which one would it be?

Life On Mars – David Bowie because it’s the best song of all time!
That was such a quick answer, usually it takes people like fifteen minutes to decide!

It is the best song of all time though! Like it’s an obvious David Bowie song but still
If you could have starred in any movie ever which one would it be?

Ah that’s a hard one, I don’t watch many movies. Uhm probably Sleeping Beauty

I could just do with a nice nap, imagine being in a film where you could just have a kip! Getting paid for it as well!
Your favourite gig or festival experience?

I’m trying to think of good memories that I can actually talk about *laughs* oh actually, seeing St. Vincent headlining Green Man. This was when I was like sixteen and it was just the most incredible show I’ve ever seen. I love St. Vincent and just seeing the show was such a moment for me. I was like sixteen not a care in the world just enjoying having the time of my life. I counted and I really needed a piss during that show and basically in the space of a three minute song I was able to make it from the front of the crowd to the bathroom and back again.
That’s a talent!

That was how much I enjoyed that show!
Well Thank you! 

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