Back on their first tour in over 4 years are punk rock band Orange. Coming with a new single and lineup, we had the chance to talk to them at Get The Fear in Birmingham about their comeback, music videos and what sort of things they’ve shared on this tour…
First of all, could you introduce yourself and what you do in the band?
Joe: My name is Joe, I play guitar and I sing.
James: I’m James and I play Drums.
Billy: I’m Billy and I play Bass.
Danny: I’m Danny and I play guitar and I sing a little bit in the background too!
Going since 2002, then had a 4 year hiatus, and decided to come back strong. What was the decision to come back?
Joe: The decision to come back, the hiatus was never meant to be four years, it was just supposed to be for a year and I wanted to try and do this solo record and I don’t know how a year turned into four but it just went on and on you know the old lineup they went and got proper jobs and they were all very happy… just about a year ago it just seemed like I want to play with people in the city where I live which is Brighton now. So I moved at this point and Orange is my baby so if there is any chance I could get things off the ground again and get us to where we were or better, then I’ll definitely roll the dice and take the chances!
Of course you’ve got a new lineup as well in the past year, whats it like joining this legacy that is Orange?
James: I don’t know if you’ll ever know what its like but it’s like when you have a hard-on and it just won’t go away. I tried to explain it to Billy and he’s like ‘No I don’t know what it’s like’! No, in all seriousness it’s great cause I was a fan of Orange before…
Joe: That’s right we met in Hastings like 5 or 6 years ago
James: He begged me to join, begged me. Nah, I was a fan of Orange before I joined them and I heard through a ‘reliable’ source that he was looking for a drummer and I sent him a couple dick pics.
Joe: It was really odd how that happened cause I hadn’t actually put the word out at all, and I was getting really like close to it and then you [James] sent me a message on Facebook. We had never talked except six years ago and its like ‘I heard from a guy you’re looking for a new lineup’ and it was like somehow this person has read my mind like actually yes I am! Then, honestly I didn’t even check out your [James] profile, I thought this will just be a bit of fun, we’ll get the wheels warmed up and within 20 seconds he blew me away and within like 20 seconds I was like ‘this is the guy’.
James: I mean, its true I did ‘blow’ him away. Oh are we talking about playing?
Danny: With me it was a different story, as I auditioned for rhythm guitar, but Joe wanted me to play lead and I was like I suck at lead I can’t do it! So, that’s exactly what I did at the audition, I sucked, like big time. So Joe never got back to me and they found another guitarist but then this didn’t work out as well so a couple of months later, Joes like ‘Oh do you still wanna be in the band’, its like whatever I don’t have anything better to do with my time!
Joe: Then we couldn’t find a bassist for like forever.
Danny: So we went through Hastings together on a little trip, just the three of us, and there was this homeless guy sitting asking for some change.. and it turned out not to be Billy! I can’t really remember how we got Billy!
Billy: No one ever officially said I was in the band. I never got there I just kept showing up.
Joe: Billy, you were friends with my sister for like 10 years, so we had that small connection. I was a huge fan of his old band ‘Vice Like Grip’ and I used to go to a couple of their shows in Hastings and I thought they were awesome so I’d seen Billy on stage so I knew he could rock and play. James and Billy were friends and it well.. yeah! Billy sent me a video tape of him playing ‘Standing Still’,I thought it was awesome and then showed up and did an audition and that was it really!
Danny: I mean the three of us aren’t so sure about Joe at this point…
James: For about 4/5 months it was just me Danny
Danny: Joe was in LA and we were like okay we need to get this band going, we were meeting up like once a week, just guitar and drums and we had bass on the backing track in the rehearsal room and that was Orange for like 4 months! Joe was saying ‘oh I’m coming back then and then it never happened like the date got pushed back and back and back.
So when you finally returned, you had your new single out ‘Late Nights and Early Mornings’, is this your massive comeback single?
Joe: It’s kind of an in-between really, I wanted to give fans something that would sound familiar, so it’s a little bit more punky than the rest of the new stuff to be honest, so I really like the reviews it got from fans saying it sounds like our first record and it’s something we just produced ourselves and didn’t really cost us much to make. That’s what I’m most proud of, that we did it all ourselves without the help of a producer.
You recorded the video twice, first time didn’t go so well. Could you explain the story of what happened?
Danny: How do you know that!
Billy: They were nice people!
Joe: They were, we had so much fun but I was the one that found them and hired them and I thought they were pros they had like fucking worksheets and demo reels and they had like a shot sheet and it looked really pro! So, we showed up and they had acne and they were 18 and I was like ‘are you guys students?’ Sure enough they were and I’m not saying its bad, I don’t wanna bad mouth them cause it was well meaning but, the video, it was clear they hadn’t made very many! It wasn’t up to, anything that is not as good as we would have done is never gonna get released.
So, you’re never gonna release the early footage of ‘Late Nights And Early Mornings’?
James: Maybe like the DVD, the live DVD.
Danny: It’s gonna be like when one of us dies and we do this whole review kind of thing, looking back at our time and yeah
Joe: What happened was, we got the first cut and I didn’t think it was salvageable and its not gonna work so we were two days away from releasing the single and we were so fucked. My dad was like ‘just don’t do it, don’t put out the single, don’t make the video just go on tour and see if you even like it’ and the fact that he told me not to do it made me want to do it more so i was like ‘no fuck you I’ll fucking get it, prove you… just to spite you!’ So, we came up with the ideas and we shot the whole thing ourselves in one very evening within two hours. The next day I was in final cut all day for like 12 hours. We were really lucky that Danny’s girlfriend Zoey does animation and she put the lyrics up there and before we knew it we had a video!
You’ve got one single out, whens the next new music coming out, I heard you’re recording an album?
Joe: Its not finished, like half of the drums are done, it’s not finished, my plan is to finish it within the next few months and go to a couple of labels. I would like to sign a deal, you haven’t got to spend a penny just plug and you’re out, so if we can make a good quality record or 6 song EP, that’s good enough, we’re sorted!
You are currently on tour, how’s it going so far?
James: It’s been great, it’s only been a few days but we’ve already got a few tour stories.
So, what are your best tour stories?
James: We’ll we’ve adopted to speaking in cockney
Joe: We found out that James has talking pockets.
Billy: He’s [James] also the most hateful angry man that’s ever lived!
Joe: This tour has been like mostly James complaining.
Billy: Oh there was a grey cloud in the sky
Danny: Or a child looked at me weird
James: Its been great, for me this is like seventh tour and Ive really enjoyed it so far.
Joe: Also, Billy and James have been ripping the absolute shit out of each other, to the point where I’ve seen James so exhausted from the interactions in the hotel and just staring at the floor thinking ‘what have I done?’
Danny: I don’t know I don’t think I can add anything to this its been absolutely great! We’re looking forward to tonight. We share plenty of experiences and body fluids and probably STD’s as well so we share everything! We’re like a family now, we’re the Orange family and it feels great! Apart from Billy
Billy: Yeah apart from me. Its been really really great, I’ve loved it apart from James! James has ruined it for me! He’s a bad person.
James: So you all heard that ‘apart from James’ and that’s how it starts and I gotta be the guy that finishes that!
Are you gonna do any more tours around the UK in the next year?
Joe: Yeah! Absolutely, my personal biggest lesson from the last tour we did was we left such a gap, we were fresh off like Bowling For Soup and then, how we did it was we kinda went from Zebrahead to Bowling For Soup to Reel Big Fish and that was it then we were off and bringing in a couple 100 kids per show. Then I took like maybe like 9 months off and I thought that would be fine… and it wasn’t cause then we did a tour and nobody came… So for me it was a huge lesson, once you got your foot on the gas, you can’t stop. So, I recon it will take maybe two years to get us to were we are and beyond with constant releases and tours we used to do. Now the pedals on the metal, I don’t have any intention of taking my foot off it again.
Finally, if each of you could say something to the fans and readers, what would it be?
Danny: Hi! I’m Danny and I play in Orange.
Billy: thanks, thanks I guess, thank you.
James: Just thanks for coming and you’re all very, very attractive people especially you guys in the back, like you think that I don’t see you but I notice you. Thanks for… BYE!
Joe: My message to the fans would be, don’t put the P in the V after you’ve been in the B. and that you’re all ‘shlags’