Marcus Pepperell and John Hamson Jr. are two childhood friends who make gloriously dreamy alt-pop as THUMPERS.
2014 is set to be a big year for the duo who have just returned from performing at SXSW in Austin, are set to release their debut album in the UK and Europe this May, and are heading out on their UK tour in the same month.
The boys kindly took some time out to create our next artist-curated playlist on Spotify, and we met with them to talk all things tour life, dream collaborations, and Dads that love the Pixies.
1. For someone who doesn’t know about you, please can you describe your sound?
Loud drums, lush vocals, and maximal everything in between.
2. What's the happiest song you've ever written?
Because a lot of our album deals with reminiscing we’d describe the happiness that exists in our songs as more of a euphoria, a feeling that maybe you know isn’t going to last forever. Sometimes that’s the best kind of happiness, though, the fact that the end point is looming is a spur to do more, enjoy intensely. We have a song called “Sound Of Screams” that is about encouraging friends to take the option to do nuts stuff while they can.
3. Tell us about the tracks on your playlist and why you chose them.
Our playlist includes some of the songs that soundtracked our most recent tours to the Netherlands, France and the US. Many are the streets that we owe apologies to for subjecting it to loud volumes of these songs. (“Cyan” by Kindness is probably the worst offender FYI). Inspired by our visit to SXSW 2014 we’ve also chosen a couple of songs that feature on the soundtrack to Richard Linklater’s “Dazed and Confused” which was shot in Austin - “Summer Breeze” and “Free Ride” are just two different sides of perfection.
4. We think happiness is better when it's shared, can you pick a song from your playlist and tell us who you'd want to share it with?
Years ago, I returned to my parents’ home one time to discover that my dad had a new-found love for the Pixies, which had come out of nowhere. It had only been just over a month since I’d last seen him but he’d totally taken them to heart in that time. Pixies are kind of awesome like that I guess, ha. It was kind of surprising but a great development. So I’d choose to listen to “Bird Dream Of The Olympus Mons” with him.
5. You've just finished your US tour, what's the happiest experience you had state side?
I had my birthday while we were touring and the weather was amazing, so we spent the day swimming and searching for salamanders in Austin’s naturally-heated Barton Springs. Such a tranquil place, it’s impossible to feel anything but blissed out doing that.
6. As a live band you've invited a number of different musicians to play with you. If you could have anyone you wanted on stage with you, who would it be?
We saw Dum Dum Girls perform “Dreaming” with Debbie Harry as a surprise cover during one of their 14(!?!) SXSW sets and have to say that we were incredibly jealous. Just watching her walk onstage was an emotional moment, that’s the extent of her power as a performer.
7. Busy summer touring schedule aside, do you have any other major plans for Thumpers in 2014?Our debut album comes out in the UK and Europe on 19th may and alongside, up to, and beyond that point we’ll be writing and recording new music. If you’re a band then you’re a shark — you don’t ever stop.