This is an extract of an interview in the Dansette fanzine. For the rest of it check out www.uppers.net
The Sires; 60's styled band, movie stars, and we think you'll like them. Helen Barrell spoke with Domi of the Sires about debauchery, wassail alternatives, and how this group of well-heeled miscreant troubadours rule their domain.
1. Who are The Sires?
The Sires are a bunch of unshackled villeins turned troubadours, going from crusade to crusade, poised to debauch the innocents.
2. How come people from so many different countries are so into The Sires' sound?
That'll be because we conquered a few distant kingdoms and the word spread that there was no resisting the Sires' sound.
3. As you've played in several different countries, what do you think of each country's audiences? Have you a favourite country that you've played in?
Without a doubt Deutschland, they understand all we need and all they need to enjoy our unpalatable melodies is a few tankards of real ale and a few bottles of Jagermeister. Belgians have greatly helped in our search for the Holy Grail as well! Scotland is our allied kingdom...
4. Your members have played in bands other than The Sires - do you think you bring anything to the Sires from those other outifts?
Domi played guitar with the Dirty Burds and brought back a song that she'd written for them that the Sires wanted to play as well...Andy is currently with the Bristols on bass and bringing home some more bad jokes...Cyril was in all the coolest bands in London but blew a fuse and moved to Japan...Wayne was with the Hurting Kind and had to heal for a while...Richie is with Little Bare Big Bear (here's a name to remember!) and brings back the cymbals when he's finished.
5. What records are currently being played on The Sires' record player? And what do you listen to in your tour bus? (if you have one, that is!)
'course we have a van, look, cool, innit? On our record player, rock'n'roll records, some we know, some we don't. In the bus, the Prunes are pretty good when you're in a daze staring at the landscape, the Stooges are just what the doctor ordered when you need that raw energy, music helps you survive, doesn't it?
6. What do The Sires do when not ...ahem... 'Siring'?
We always sire! And then we drink, mostly.
7. What's your favourite character in Sire Thomas Malory's 'Morte Darthur'?
Tristan and Yseult for bravery and passion!
8. If you could be a character in any of the King Arthur romance tales, who would you be and why?
Domi is Queen Guinevere as she breaks every boy's heart....Andy is King Arthur, leading the way for the Knights of the Round Table....Cyril is Galahad as he's the only one to have ever been initiated to the Holy Grail....Richie is Tristan as he's the perfect lover....Wayne is Lancelot as he's the bravest Knight.
9. Have you considered doing a garage cover of Medieval madrigals, such as 'Now is the Month of Maying'?
We did do a couple of jingles for a New York radio show and one of them was very medieval with gregorian sounding vocals and acoustic instruments. It was our own composition though. A cover of 'Now is the month of Maying'? Maybe one day, in May.
10. How did you get to perform in film comedy 'Honest'? What's it all about, and what was it like to be in it?
It's quite an honour, we reckon, to be in the film voted biggest British turkey ever!! Anyway, Dave Stewart was looking for a band who could fill the part, ie: a band playing live at an open-air festival in 1968. We went along to meet him and he liked our look and our music, so we shook hands. We shot a whole day in front of a massive screaming crowd, it was like being rock stars! We were signing autographs for people who thought we were famous because we got introduced by Dave Stewart and Nicole Appleton came and danced on stage with us. But anyway it's out on video now so you can see for yourselves the Sires' 1 minute-fame!
11. How do you write The Sires' songs? Do you get together and have a jamming session? Or do you write the songs individually and take them to the rest of the band?
Songs are written separately, although Andy and Domi work more and more together, now they learned how to control their bloody tempers and hid the swords! Some ideas have come from jamming sessions.
12. What was the weirdest thing to ever have happened at a Sires' gig?
Tricky, a lot of weird things tend to happen before, during and after a Sires gig! Let's see...Well, generally every member is pretty drunk or whatever by the time they go on stage, so a lot of things happen because of that; but also because of that, they can't always remember why Domi is broozed and bleeding. One funny thing was when Cyril put his bass to feed back against his amp and danced around it like a ballerina during the guitar solo, then, he picked it up again like nothing has happened. That was weird. But the best way to find out what goes on at Sires gig is...
13. Do you ever get sent odd gifts by ardent fans?
Well, a lot of our fans are Japanese girls, so we get paper fans and stuff, we get amazing drawings and paintings, especially from Pedro in Italy. We also give odd gifts to our fans...especially Domi...
14. What's the grooviest venue you've ever played in?
Aah! the grooviest was in Munich, Germany, the Atomic cafe. It was like entering Barbarella's grotto: it was all white and orange, plastic and metal. It was pretty surreal to be playing on that glittery stage. And the public matched the venue!
15. From photos I've seen of the band, you seem to be very much into the Brian Jones/hipsters/big-buckled belts/etc. look. (as Record Collector said: 'denim jackets, stripey t-shirts and Chelsea boots'). where do you get these clothes from?
They kind of just appear, we all hate shopping and just wait for the clothes to come to us, and they do, strangely enough.
A COUPLE OF MONTHS BACK I RECEIVED an email from Russ Hopkinson, drummer with Aussie rock'n'pop kings You Am I, who told of a strange incident that took place backstage at one of the stops on their tour, the Rumblin' Dice Roadshow, which had sold out on the back of their third consecutive Australian number one album.
"Met a kid who was wearing a home made Sires T-shirt" wrote Russ, "He was more excited about the fact I knew Andy and Domi [Sires guitarist and vocalist] than he was to be hangin' backstage at a You Am I show... and so he should be!" When I related this tale to Andy (Sire - Guitars and Vocals) and Domi (di Malacarne - Vocals, Tambourine, Maracas, Harmonica) they were amazed but also it seemed to bear out some of their own thoughts about the thing we call rock'n'roll - namely that if you're really into what you're doing, somebody, somewhere'll dig it too. Not a fashionable view by any means but, apart from the primal urge to make a racket, something that has kept bands going through even the leanest times.
The roots of The Sires were laid during the early 90s when Worcester native Andy and Domi served together in The Turkee Necks, who were based in her native town of Limoges, France. After moving to London in 1995 the duo recruited a friend from Limoges, "Extremely lecherous bass player" Cedric Kynge, and started to knock out some of the hardest fuzziest garage punk the capital has ever heard, informed by the Northwest sound of The Wailers & Sonics, British faves like The Kinks plus a whole host of rock'n'roll, R&B and punk rock schlock from the 50s thru to the 70s.
So far so good you might think but the proof is in the plastic and after hooking up Twist Records, their debut EP High'n'Mighty was released to universal acclaim during the Autumn of 1996 and their second release The Sires Rule...OK? hit the decks of connoisseurs of crunch during '97.
With the recent arrival of Richard The Learned One to the drum seat, hot from the now defunct Nuthins, The Sires are now busy recording their first longplayer - the last vinyl album to be released on Twist - at their home studio for release sometime next year, judging by the tracks I've been privileged to hear - including the astounding 3/4 time groove of Spanish Girl - the band are taking great steps to ensure that this'll be a platter that matters. Why should we expect anything less??
Joss Hutton - Bucketfull of Brains No. 52
The Sires A l'Escale Bleu Marine
Venant de Londres, The Sires constituent l'un des meuillers groupes de rock garage actuellement en activite en Angleterre. Dans la lignee des superbes formations qui illustraient les excellentes compilations punk sixties, The Sires font montre d'un reel talent non seulement dans l'interpratation de leurs propres compositions, mais aussi dans le choix de leurs reprises: A deguster leur version de 'Ruler of My Heart' d'Irma Thomas sur leur LP paru chez Twist Records.
The Sires seront en concert le mardi 15 juin a partir de 18h30, a l'escale Bleu Marine de Reze ( Rond point des martyrs Nantais).
Presse Ocean - 8/6/99 - France
THE SIRES appear to be a band that has taken off over the last 12 months. They've recently released an EP on Twist with a '60s Back From The Grave flavour. I think they're brilliant live and I'm with them 100%. I'd recommend them to anyone...they're gonna go from strength to strength.
Teen Scene - USA
1995 zog es die Franzosin Domi und den Briten Andy, die in Limoges/Frankreich in der Band the Turkee Necks spielten, nach London. Schnell holten sie ihren Freund, den Bassisten Cedric aus Limoges nach und grundeten mit ihm und einer Londoner Freundin am Schlagzeug die Sires. Die ublichen Clubs der Umberbung wie the Garage und Dirty Water Club (Heimatbasis der Headcoats und Headcoatees) wurden regelmassig gepielt und schon bald kam man in Kontact mit Twist Records, einem Label das gleichzeitig von Deutschland und von den britischen Kanalinseln aus operiert. Twist veroffentlichte in Folge zwei Singles und ein Album mit der Band. Eine weitere Single wurde beim amerikanischen Smart Label herausgebracht. Stilecht zog man sich fur die Aufnahmen meist in's legendare Toe Rag Studio zuruck und liess in den noch viel legendareren abbey Road Studio mastern. Der Posten des Schlagzeugers wurde bald neu besetzt mit Richard von den inzwischen aufgelosten Nuthins. Im Herbst 1998 spielte die Band beim Wild Weekend im Londoner Frat Shack gemeinsam mit Fortune & Maltese, den 5678s, Woggles, Headcoats und ? & The Mysterians. Naturlich teilten die Sires auch die Buhnen mit ihren britischen Brudern und Schwestern im Geiste wie den Thanes, Embrooks, Armitage Shanks, Dutronc, Bagtwister, Wilderbeests, Diaboliks und Kaisers. Eine erste Europa our mit Auftritten in Frankreich, Deutchland, Holland und Belgien wurde ebenfalls 1998 unternommen und fur den demnachst erscheinenden Film 'Honest' (regie: Dave Stewart von die Eurythmics) wurde eine Sires Festival Aufritt vor 8000 kreischenden Kids gefilmt, in dem die britisch-franzozische Band dann unter anderen zusammen mit den All Saints zu sehen sein wird. Als nachstes steht jedoch erst mal ein Beitrag fur ein Small Faces Tribute Album auf der Programm. Ach ja, Sangerin Domi war zwischenzeitlich auch mal bei der Girl-Garage-Group The Dirty Burds aktiv, ist mittlerweile aber wieder ausgestiegen.
Wer denkt, dass britische Bands auch immer britisch klingen mussen, irrt gewaltig. Wenn die sires jedenfalls loslegen, klingt das ganze ziemlich original nach US Garage Teen Punk aus den Sixties. Verfuzzter norgeliger Beat mit der rotzigen Energie des fruhen Punk Rocks, Lofi Sound und der rockenden Rohheit der Sonics und der MC5 gepaart. Dazu kommt noch eine gehorige Dosis Soul Groove (Irma Thomas 'Ruler of my Heart' wurde als Titlestuck ihres Albums gecovert). Kein Wunder, dass die Sires zur absoluterr Speerspitze der neuen britischen Sixties Garage Generation zahlen.
City Sound - Germany
13th Note Cafe date for Sires
Modern garage band The Sires visit Glasgow this weekend for a 13th Note Cafe show. The London band, signed to Guernsey label Twist, have only released two vinyl singles, but are regarded as being at the vanguard of the garage band revival. The Sires will have a debut album out this March and should be worth seeing live if they can recapture the energy rush feel that runs through their recent The Sires rule...OK?
Evening Times - Scotland