Club Kuru Talks
Club Kuru is Bristol born musician Laurie Erskine, a classically trained pianist who swapped his jazz roots for the illusive production life. Loss of direction saw Erskine throw away a complete unreleased jazz album and begin to pave the path for a new creative journey. Completely self-taught in the art of singing, Erskine has managed to release some super catchy tunes with one of his earlier tracks 'All The Days' creating quite the stir and catapulting Club Kuru into the limelight as one to watch.
Club Kuru has just released his first EP 'All The Days', which features four tracks of indulgent electro-pop that fits right into the concept of Club Kuru… The collective sickness in human beings. Themes of tragedy and romanticism run deep within Club Kuru's music, which is displayed across all four tracks of the new EP.
Have a read of what Club Kuru had to say about the world of Kuru and devastating disease…
Firstly, many blogs have been banging on about the meaning of ‘Kuru’ and it’s affiliation with disease spread by cannibalism. Did you know this before you came up with ‘Club Kuru’?
Yes I did but I wish it hadn't been taken so literally. I was thinking more about a disease of the soul rather than the really tragic reality of the disease 'kuru'. I'm glad to say there haven't been any cases for years.
Is it some sort of metaphorical meaning for toxic relationships (really toxic), as your current video does feature you being buried alive by a woman…?
Ha. In a way…The idea behind the name is more about a collective sickness in human beings. But certainly that video is a metaphor for toxic relationships. It's also part of a wider concept that runs across the three videos for this EP.
Your sound is a little tortured and dramatic, where do you draw inspiration from?
Like most people, I guess I get inspiration from all sorts of places. I get lots from other music. I’ve always liked dramatic and romantic music and I enjoy being stirred up by it all and indulging in it sentimentally.
I understand you’re a classically trained pianist, what sparked your interest in production?
I got to a point being a jazz pianist where I felt I couldn't see where I wanted to go anymore so I started writing songs. Then in order to make them into something, I used my laptop and from there its been a natural process of building up a small home studio to learn how to produce my own stuff.
‘All The Days’ created quite a stir, which is fairly impressive for a first release. Had you worked on many other tracks before releasing ‘All The Days’?
Yes too many to count. I had written and recorded a jazz album and never released it. Then I had finished enough songs for a second album but didn't feel good about it, so had to let all that go. After that I started working more in the vein that I'm in now and put a few demos online which got picked up quite quickly. From there I was able to finish All The Days and start the ball rolling but still it all feels like very early days for me.
That track reminds me a little of Frank Ocean with little hints of R&B, how would describe your style?
I know you what you mean about the electronic R&B thing. But I think I'm more regimented than most R&B singers. I mean I don't mess around with the melody at all and I think Club Kuru sounds quite like a band. I’m drawing on lots of musical influences but I restrict myself to certain rules so as to maintain some kind of confluent character.
Your close to releasing your debut EP ‘All the Days’ via Believe Recordings on the 27th of this month. What was the process of production like for you? Were there any collaborations or helping hands involved?
Dan Austin is my main man he helped me loads. He's a really amazing engineer and producer who's worked with Massive Attack, The Pixies, Doves and so many more. We work really well together and I learnt a lot from him. Also my old friends Fergus Ireland and Kyle MacConnel, who have stuck by me for many years, play bass and guitar on the record and will be joining me on stage.
Can we expect more releases from you in the future?
Another EP is all ready to go for later this year and I'm well into writing my LP. I did a remix for a band called All We Are which comes out soon and I like to rework my own tunes in a more electronic left field kind of style which I’ll put out soon too.
You’re playing The Waiting Room in London on the 12th of May. By first gig do you mean first gig ever or just in London?
This will be my first gig as a singer. I’m planning on doing some practice shows to friends to get warmed up for it. Transferring what I made in the studio to a live setting has been a real hard time but we've got there in the end.
Have you got anything special planned for the crowd at The Waiting Room?
You'll have to wait and see!
Will you be touring in support of the ‘All The Days’ EP?
After the Waiting Room on the 12th we are playing the Great Escape Festival on the 15th and then a little tour after that which is just getting sorted out…
What are you currently listening to that you just can’t get enough of?
Unknown Mortal Orchestra.
Is there anything else we need to know about the world of Club Kuru?
This is just the beginning. Kuru is coming…