The Luka State, This is all your FAULT

Photography: Rob Blackman

The Luka State are the English rock band with a lot of soul and determination to see their dreams realised. After five years of endless touring and persistent writing, today the band has released their debut album Fall In Fall Out. The album is a shining example of the band’s ability to draw on varying experiences and influences to create a body of work wholly unique from what you’ve heard before but still comforting in its traditional themes.

No two songs are the same, from rambunctious bangers to mellowed crooning, surprises lurk around every corner of the album so we caught up with the band to discuss their process, journey and of course, their FAULTs.

The Luka State debut album Fall In Fall Out is out today via Shelter Records/BMG and you can pick up tickets to their upcoming tour HERE

As you prepare for your virtual tour, is it still easy to get pumped up and excited or does the bittersweet knowledge of not being able to tour in person hold back those feelings?

I think you hit the nail on the head; there are pros and cons to everything. The pros of this virtual tour are that we can hit the masses, the reach online is infinite and no matter where you are in the world, people can hop on so hopefully it will create more fans. However, it’s missing that human connection that we all crave, and we’ve realised how much we want, need and rely on it. It’s put things in perspective about how we take gigs and everything else for granted. It’s the best we can do, and we want to keep people engaged, and music makes the world go round so it’s good to provide our fans with that.

Before lockdown, you guys were playing a massive amount of gigs across the country non-stop. During that time did you ever stop and realise how far you’d come as a band?

During those moments your heads in the game and you’re just trying to smash it out. I don’t think you realise it until you have a sold-out gig or until someone comes up to us at a merch stand and says “your music means the world to me”. That’s when we really took home what was happening, but there’s never been a moment where we’ve sat down and thought “wow we’ve come really far”. Selling out the Lexington was a nice moment, but we haven’t got time to reflect, we don’t want to slow down because we have so many goals and so much hard work still to be done and those goals are in the forefront.

Your hometown and your upbringings have inspired some of your best music, is there a fear that as you progress and gain notoriety, those themes could become more disingenuous?

I think you can always draw from those experiences. You can’t sing about being skint if you’re a rockstar earning millions, but we’re trying to focus on the stories from our past that inspired us. It’s important to remember where you’re from and I think you can always maintain that relationship with what you want when you’re writing. I think the secret to great songwriting is that you can be inspired no matter where you are, and as long as you keep that connection, you’re pretty safe.

Has there been a change in your songwriting since the lockdown began?

For sure, at the start of lockdown, I was writing really angry punk songs which were quite dark and then as time has gone on, I mellowed out. I’m always conscious of how I’m writing; if I write too many punk songs, I know to move onto something softer because you should never be writing the same thing repeatedly. It’s forever changing because I can never stay in one place.

The fanbase you have is really loyal to your music, do you fear that as you grow, you might move away from what the original fans want from you?

As a music fan myself, when you invest in a band, you also grow with that band and appreciate what they’re doing. That’s why some bands have the same fans they’ve had from day one. Some fans along the way might grow out of it, but I think it’s good to be invested in a band’s growth. It doesn’t bother me; it excites me to think people want to be along for the journey – if people don’t like a new direction I still think it’s great that they enjoyed some part of our journey.

What’s been the most challenging aspect of your musical journey?

The UK music industry, guitar music isn’t as popular as it used to be, so it’s been hard to get where we want to be. We’ve been a band for five years, but Sam and I have been travelling in bands since we were fourteen and we always thought “next year, it’ll work out”. The challenge has been trying to not give up despite the industry not being so into guitar music and all the other negativity, but the core value of us as a band is
believing in yourself and believing in your dreams, so we’re really proud of that.

As we approach the release of Fall In Fall Out, was it hard to give the album over knowing it was the point of no return or were you comfortable with all the hard work you put into it?

We’re happy; we enjoyed making it, we enjoyed writing it – It was a very spiritual experience for all four of us, but that’s gone now, and I now see it as the world’s record. It’s yours, enjoy it, and we’ll see you on the road.

People always ask about what your favourite live show experience, what’s your worst live show experience?

That’s a hard one, but I think Foo Fighters at Manchester Cricket ground because it was pissing it down so you couldn’t hear anything, but I’ve seen them loads of times, so that made us for it! I once sneaked into V Festival to see The Stone Roses and Noel Gallagher, and I got caught twice, and they threatened to have me arrested if I tried it again. I was so persistent though, I crawled through thorns, nettles and a massive length of bushes got all cut up and made a mad dash for it but I made it through and saw the gig.

What is your FAULT?

I’m never content. If we got one number one record, I’d want two. If we got one leadline slot at a festival, I’d want three. I would never be able to understand why we didn’t get the other two. Sometimes it’s going to be my downfall because I’m not happy where I am, but I’m always looking ahead and analysing every detail and wanting more.