Introducing: The Natterjacks

Fate is a funny old thing.

If you’ve never heard of a candid camera party, let me fill you in: you’re split into teams, given a list of challenges that you need to complete – the more risky the challenge, the higher the point score attached to it – and you need to get picture evidence. The team with the highest point score at the end wins. And the pictures make for hilarious viewing the next day (although they might not always be Facebook appropriate. You have been warned.)

For example, one challenge could be to pour a pint behind a bar. Another could be to create a human pyramid. Or even asking a stranger to crawl down the street with you – it’s at this point that I met The Natterjacks.

I woke up the next morning with a sore head, a lot of bruises and a business card in my handbag. I type in ‘The Natterjacks’ into Google, and was instantly filled with excitement: these guys are good. Really good.

Freddie, 19, and Mark, 20, sound like the indie folk lovechild of Mumford and Sons, and Ben Howard.

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This video of them performing for BBC Introducing’s ‘The Beat’ on Radio Derby has had almost 150,000 views on Youtube. Not bad for a couple of lads from Chesterfield who started out doing a few pop punk covers. I had to know more:

 

– So you have a really ‘big’ sound, it’s hard to believe there are only two of you! What instruments do you play?

Freddie: I play guitar, some banjo, the tambourine and vocals.

Mark: And I play the guitar, banjo, mandolin, kick drum and a bit of vocals.

– Is music something you’ve always wanted to do? What did you want to do when you were a kid?

Freddie: This is going to sound really corny, but I wanted to be a rockstar! I study dentistry and University of Sheffield so I’m having to split my time between that and gigging, writing and recording at the minute.

Mark: And I wanted to be a chef. We’re good friends and we started to do some open mic nights playing pop punk covers, then I introduced Fred to more folky bands like Mumford and Sons, and now here we are.

– Your sound is very ‘Mumford’; do you have any other influences?

A few of them are Ben Howard, Vaccines, Bombay Bicycle Club. But we’re finding lots of influences working their way into our music as we listen to new stuff.

– What was the first album you ever bought? (No judgement; mine was Britney Spears and I’m still not ashamed to say that, but I probably should be.)

Freddie: A Present for Everyone – Busted, not ashamed to say some of their songs are incredible!

Mark: S Club 7…

– What would be your perfect gig line-up?

Mumford and Sons, Ben Howard, Fleet Foxes, Haim and The Natterjacks (We can’t leave ourselves out of the chance to play a great gig!)

– And when can we hear more of you? Do you have any gigs or releases coming up?

We’re currently in the process of recording an album which we are hoping to have released in the summer. The first few tracks are up online so that’s quite exciting. We’ve got plenty of gigs around Chesterfield and Sheffield, we’re looking to get quite a busy summer sorted too which should be fun. What we really want is to get onto the festival scene – we feel we’d be really well-suited there.

 

Check out their <a href=”www.thenatterjacksofficial.co.uk>website</a> for the latest on their gigs and releases – expect big things from this band.

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About Rachel-Louise Gerrish

As someone who both studies and practices Journalism, I love uncovering little-known facts and sharing them with the world (take a look at my Twitter feed @RLGerrish if you don't believe me - you'll see I'm borderline obsessive). I work on the University of Sheffield's award-winning Forge Radio, so I'm really excited to be part of the Gola team to be able to share with you some of the amazing talent that passes through our studio here in the Steel City.

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