Greater Manchester sextet The Maitlands have been causing quite a stir locally with their raw and punchy sound, so much so that it’s seen them snag some fairly impressive festival appearances this summer. We caught up with Carl L Ingram of the band to find out more about what makes The Maitlands such an exciting prospect for 2019 and beyond.
Tell us a little bit about yourselves. What’s the story behind The Maitlands and how would you describe your sound?
This all started 5 years ago when I contacted Francis Moran who I was previously in a band with. The plan was, ‘start a band, call them The Maitlands, and let’s see where it goes from there’. We had no idea how everything was going to sound or what we wanted at the time. Now though with the current lineup of six members we’re sounding big, but I still think of us as a D.I.Y Garage band.
What motivates you and inspires your music, aesthetic and vibe?
Everything around me motivates me to make music. Every time I talk to someone, I’m listening intently to the language and the stories. Getting ideas. It’s usually the mundane things that I pick up on to write about … things that generally go unnoticed.
I’m not sure I’ve ever heard Derker (an area in Greater Manchester for those that don’t know) namechecked in a song before. How did Daunting from Derker come about?
No, I think you’re right. I’m the first to champion Derker. It’s the nearest tram stop to my house in Oldham … it usually gets a lot of stick as an area, but I think it’s alright. Quite nice this time of year. The song’s lyrics were written on a tram ride home. I was stuck with a drunken bloke on his way to Bury. He kept saying “It’s like that song Stranded” – I thought ‘I don’t know what you’re on about, but I can write one’. So, I pretty much just wrote down everything that he said. I hope he made it to Bury safely!
You’ve been described as ‘a cross between a drunk Smiths and a sober Fall‘, and I can hear shades of The Smiths, Buzzcocks and Chameleons in your music – is the history of Manchester and its music important to the band? Is it a blessing or a curse?
I’m a fan of all 3 of the bands you’ve just mentioned. That’s a good slice of the Manchester music heritage. The Fall … can’t argue with that either. Got Jarvis Cocker recently as well as a comparison. All good, great lyricists. Living in and around Manchester is very important to the band. It’s the best place I’ve ever been to for live music. You don’t always stand out as a band because there’s so much going on but what a great place to live. The history of Manchester music doesn’t really mean much to me though. I like music from all over the shop. I’ve never been one for ‘scenes’.
You’ve got some festival spots coming up this Summer, including Blackthorn Festival. How do you find playing festivals, compared to you own gigs?
Never played a festival before. Not something I’ve been interested in until this year. We applied for a load of them and luckily got on a few. Like I said before our sound is bigger than it has been and warrants a big stage now. I’ve always preferred small venues myself. All crammed in one room for 40 minutes then off to the pub but I’m looking forward to this summer. I’ll let you know how it goes.
What’s up next for The Maitlands? Any upcoming gigs, new releases on the horizon, other projects?
Yes, we’re always at it. Just off for a quick break but I need to get the lyrics wrote for the next EP which hopefully we’ll have out at the end of the year. In the meantime, loads of gigs including the festivals. Cotton Clouds being a big one in Saddleworth with Peter Hook and the Light and the Wailers on the lineup. We have two singles recorded and ready to put out. First one being Dissatisfied at the end June.