IT’S not hard to miss Everything Everything’s sound. The chart-topping Manchester indie act’s staccato pop and crisp production is clean, short and sweet.
And with 1,175,618 views of their single, Cough Cough, on YouTube, it’s likely you’ve come across this four-piece.
But while the band’s members aren’t Mancunians, they have soaked up Manchester’ s musical heritage – Everything Everything’s bassist Jeremy Pritchard even lives in the former residence of the city’s Factory Records label less-known boss.
“This was the place where Alan Erasmus ran Factory Records, but no-one really knew about him. He was a really private man,” says Pritchard.
But Everything Everything are a world away from Factory’s baggy-trousered and hapless Happy Mondays. The Mercury-nominated four-piece have just released their second album, Arc, a collection socially-aware songs. The album addresses issues such as the coalition Government’s cuts and the West’s preoccupation with capitalism. It’s hard-hitting stuff – hardly the material you expect from a commercially successful album. The band’s video for its single Cough Cough shows Pritchard feeding off a pipe of oil, highlighting our dependency on fuel.
“It’s about the unfairness of capitalism and our own collusion in all that,” says Pritchard.
“I wouldn’t pretend to have any answers to society’s problems but as an artist I think you should turn a mirror on society.
“It would be irresponsible to write an album about touring again or just another personal album.”
“There are some reflective qualities to the lyrics on the album, which look at the coalition government and the socio-economic effect of what they are doing, which culminated in the riots of 2011.
“In Salford we could see the smoke and the coppers lining the roads. This was real, it was a wake-up call.”
And in spite of its serious nature, Arc peaked at five in the album charts.
“The benefit of writing a second album is that you know the pitfalls of the first. But we were geared up and ready to do it.
“It’s just a slow process of weeding out the good stuff and bad.”
The band are often described as playing ‘math rock’, as Pritchard explains. “Math rock basically means hardcore punk with a weird time signature – like Fugazi,” he says. “Foals are an inspiration as well.”
But in Arc, Everything Everything not only fuse math rock and pop sensibilities, they also ponder mankind’s behaviour. “It’s about the overall trajectory of mankind and man’s interaction with the environment,” says Pritchard. “We are relatively insignificant really but we happen to have the intelligence to be aware of ourselves.”
Everything Everything’s influences go beyond Fugazi, however. “I’ve always loved Devo and Kraftwerk,” says Pritchard.
With Arc, Everything Everything set out to make themselves a more visually identifiable act.
“We’ve put ourselves on the cover this time and that is emblematic of a new confidence. It’s also the simplest way to present an honest version of the band.”
Everything Everything formed in 2007 but their rise to fame came several years later, in 2010, when the BBC included them in the Sound Poll of that year.
On the back of the nomination, the band were quickly snapped up by Geffen Records and – through Geffen – the band released their Mercury-nominated Man Alive.
On this tour, which comes to Sheffield, the band will be playing material from their latest album Arc, as well as highlights from the band’s Man Alive material.
Everything Everything perform at the Leadmill on Saturday.