Following the release of their debut EP last month, Adam Keys caught up with Liily guitarist, Sam De La Torre to talk music, touring and the hype around this incredibly talented band.
ROR: Thanks for joining us at RUSHONROCK. The last six months have been incredible for Liily. Tell us a bit about the journey up to this point.
Sam De La Torre: We released our first few singles last year and the the EP kicked off our 2019. Most of those songs were written a while ago and some were made just days before going into the studio. Once the songs were recorded and finished, everything happened very quickly. We knew we had to get around to touring so we could show people what to expect at live performances. We just finished our first US tour as direct support and that gave us the chance to widen a fan base outside of our hometown of Los Angeles. It was a long tour, but we all enjoyed it and we’re glad to be home to start working on the next thing.
ROR: For our readers who are new to Liily, how would you describe your sound?
SDLT: That’s always a difficult question for us, but our audience tends to be people who are fans of Rock. We listen to a lot of different things individually so the direction is all over the place but it leans more towards a post-punk type sound… at least at the moment. Who knows what genre we’ll get put into when more music comes out. There’s two lead guitars on the EP, and that makes for songs that are a little more intricate and interesting to us than someone playing changes and chords. I think our sound has a lot of energy to it and generally we like things to strike or alarm people.
ROR: I Can Fool Anybody In This Town came out on Friday to critical acclaim. Tell us a bit about the six-track release, and the reasons for not putting out a full length at this stage?
SDLT: These six songs were with us for quite a while before the release. Again, some were made days before recording and some existed a year or two prior. All of them have been with us for so long and we were ready to get music out into the world so this EP seemed like a solid start.
ROR:From start to finish, the I Can Fool Anybody In This Town is refreshingly ballsy. Where has theinspiration come from for this kind of sound?
SDLT: We all have different personal influences and inspirations. The influence could come from poets, visual artists, or really anything that we have been consuming. There’s a handful of bands we all agree are great and all listen to regularly, such as Foals and Rage Against the Machine, but for the most part we all have different tastes and use that fact to our advantage. Hopefully the EP sounds like a soup of all the different influences from each of us.
ROR: Amongst numerous others, Jack Saunders on BBC Radio 1 named you guys in his bands to watch out for. Did this kind of focus increase the pressure before the release?
SDLT: We really appreciate Jack’s support so far, I know he’s played “Sold” on his show a few times. I think Jack Saunders is one of those people out there in the world who likes listening to our music, therefore it’s for him and for whoever else wants to listen to it. Of course, we love hearing that from him and it’s quite surreal but it didn’t put any pressure on us to do anything unnaturally.
ROR: Your live shows have been getting a great deal of media attention, with word spreading fast about your high-energy approach. Tell us a bit about your build up to a live show, and what helps you bring the levels passion you do to the stage.
SDLT: Our live performance is always adapting and changing with the music we write and with different crowds. When it’s time to be crazy, we can be crazy and we love it when the audience gets involved. There’s nothing worse than a line of people in the front row with their phones out, so when we perform, we react to the audience and they react to us. They’re just as much of a performer in the experience.
ROR: In the UK, you are playing The Great Escape in Brighton, which features some great breakthrough artists. How do you see the festival, which maintains strong links with major brands like Spotify, helping your appeal grow further?
SDLT: We just did our first major festival in Austin at SXSW and we had a lot of fun. That kind of festival had a lot of value to it because it served the purpose of debuting new artists. Everyone there was supportive of each other and we were all in the same boat. That got us excited for upcoming festivals along those lines, especially The Great Escape. It’ll be our first time performing in the UK and as a new band, it’s nice to see people interested in what’s coming. As long as those people show up, we are there for them.
ROR: Finally, when will we see Liily on a full UK tour?
SDLT: Hopefully later this year.