Blood Youth are young and upcoming band from Harrogate, England. In only three years of existence, they released two great EPs and a fantastic album 'Beyond Repair.' On the way, Blood Youth gained a respectable fan base and toured with bands like While She Sleeps, and now Neck Deep. We caught them in Brussels a few days ago and had a quick chat with singer Kaya Tarsus.
Hey! So, this is actually our second time to see you live, the first being last year in Belgrade with While She Sleeps. Do you remember that show?
Kaya: Oh, sick! Yeah, we do remember because Serbia was like… We never thought we'd ever play in Serbia because of where we come from and everything like that. It's such a small town in the North of England, and nobody ever kind of escapes it. So for us to be going so far away from our home, and to see people singing along with the songs was insane. We always talk about that show. So it was really cool for us.
Can you tell me more about that tour? It was your first time to go so far East in Europe, right?
Kaya: That was an amazing tour because it really opened our eyes to see where we have fans. When we played in Bulgaria, I think that was the furthest we've ever been from home. So yeah, it was amazing and While She Sleeps are amazing guys, so it was really cool. And then, they live really close to us, so it was like a big family touring around.
You are joining Neck Deep on this tour, what do you expect from it?
Kaya: I think it's going to be amazing. I think it's gonna be really good. We love playing in Europe, and it's cool for us to go from playing heavy tours to going to like a pop-punk tour. We're glad that we can do that. You know we love the Neck Deep guys, and the Real Friends, As It Is and everyone's really cool, so it will be a lot of fun.
Is it kind of weird for you to watch Sam on the stage, but not in Blood Youth?
Kaya: It is what it is; Sam is now in Neck Deep longer than he was in Blood Youth, so he’s now more of a Neck Deep member than he ever was in this band. But he’s still our best friend. We're good friends with all of them, so it's all good it's all love. Good times.
Did you play in Brussels before, or this is your first time?
Kaya: It is our first time in Brussels, but we played Groezrock in Belgium. We played in Belgium, and it's always been really good. But, this is our first time in Brussels, so we don't know what to expect. There are a few shows like that on this tour. I've never been to Amsterdam, and we are there tomorrow.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think you never had a headlining tour in a mainland Europe. Do you have any plans for doing it in the future?
Kaya: It’s something we've talked about, nothing is, like, set in stone. But we'd love to do that; we have had that conversation. Maybe sometimes, in the near future. But we’d love that, taking that step of being the headline band. I'm sure we will at some point.
And after Brexit, how difficult do you think it will be for underground bands from the UK to tour Europe, and vice versa?
Kaya: It's tough to answer because we don't know, either. In the UK nobody really knows what's going on. It hasn't happened yet, so honestly, I don't know. I have no idea what how it's going to affect us or affect the touring band going through Europe. No one has said anything to us. Everyone's kind of waiting for it to happen. So we'll see. We'll see. Hopefully, it remains as accessible as it has been for us.
After two great EPs, this year you finally released your debut ‘Beyond Repair.’ How did your fans react to it, and how happy you are with it?
Kaya: It blew our minds how well it did. With the two EPs, we were like experimenting. So, the first EP is a lot heavier, than the second one, and the second one has an acoustic song on it. So, we saw how heavy we can go, how melodic we can go. And we saw what people liked, and we just created an album out of that, basically. We wanted to make an album that our fans wanted to hear, as well as ourselves. Yeah, we were really happy with it, and it sounds exactly how we wanted it to sound. It’s good, and we're glad everyone's really into it as well.
How hard it is for you to find a middle ground between the heavy and melodic, or that comes naturally?
Kaya: It’s just a natural thing; it kind of flows. We don't really write songs and go – “this is going to be a heavy song, or this is going to be a melodic song.” We kind of just flow and just see what comes out. Then we’ll go like – “I think that we should sing over this part, or I think we should scream over this part.” So, on the album, there are some songs which are just screaming and really heavy; somewhere there is a lot of melody. I think it all just comes naturally. Luckily. (laughs)
An interesting fact about your band, well, interesting for me is that you released all of your music with Rude Records, and they are from Italy. How come that as a British band you are signed for Italian, and not a British label?
Kaya: Honestly, when we first started Blood Youth and had the ‘Inside My Head’ EP no one was willing to take a chance with us because there was a new band no one heard of, anything like that. Rude heard it, and they said – “Okay we'll release it.” And we said we have no fans, we nothing, and they just said – “Okay, we'll do it.” And we respect kind of loyalty in this industry. People back us from the start, you know, we have the same team since the beginning. It's that thing of - if it's not broke, don't fix it. Don't change it, you know. It just worked well for us. They've backed us since the start, and it just made sense that our first album should be with them as well. It is really good. We didn't even really consider moving on it worked well for the two EPs. So we were like – “let's do the album with them, as well.”
In your opinion, how important are people and companies like Rude Record are for the scene? Someone who is ready to open the door and give a chance to new artists?
Kaya: Well, you if you need them, don’t you? We need new bands, and we need new music, so it's important. They gave us our first chance. Without them, we wouldn't have been able to release our EP. So, yes, it's so important, and I hope the labels continue to do that.
You are a very productive band, are you planning on making new music in the near future?
Kaya: Were in the industry where if you stop, people forget about you, and no one cares anymore. And unfortunately that's what happens. So this is all you do. We're not good at anything else; we can't do anything else. Like, I don't have any grades or anything. So, we just constantly put out music, and if people like it and want us to tour, then we'll do it. We just had that kind of fire to just constantly write, and write, and write. That's just how it works. We don't plan it. We just write and just put out stuff.
But how hard it is for you, as a band and personally to be continually touring and continuously writing. How do you manage to find the time and energy?
Kaya: It’s tough. You just have to go like – “okay we're back from tour for two weeks, that's when we can write new things; that's when we can demo new songs.” And then we go on tour, and come back for five days… You just have fit around what you're doing. And obviously, you can't fake it. You have to have a reason to write a song. So there are some days when I… When we were writing the album, I wasn't sure what I wanted to write about. So I kind of took two weeks off from writing, and I ended up like dating someone, and it went really bad. So, I was like – “well now I've got something to write about.” (laughs) You just have to wait for life to give you things to write about. It sounds a bit cheesy, but it's true. And you can't fake anything because people will know.