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When it comes to playing drums, Daughter’s Remi Aguilella is a firm believer in less is more.
“I don’t use the hi-hat which 99% of drummers use,” he says. “I feel I become more creative when I have got less to play with. “It challenges you to come up with something interesting with what you have.”
The same could be said for his band, Daughter, whose early EPs were characterised by a minimalist sound based around singer Elena Tonra’s beautiful voice and lightly-plucked electric guitar, partner Igor Haefeli’s guitar effects and Aguilella’s light and textured jazz-influenced drum style, which helps create the sort of emotional crescendo that can lift a room.
The band came together as students at North London’s Institute of Contemporary Music Performance.
“We were asked to play together for the course,” says Aguilella. “As soon as I heard Elena play and sing I knew I really loved it.”
Torna had been working as a solo artist but decided to expand her band to a three-piece, partly because she was bored with playing on her own.
“When you go on tour you want people and friends around you,” says Aguilella. “Otherwise you only see people when you play a live show – there’s a lot of time on the road so it’s more fun if you’re with friends.
“I remember seeing a message from Elena asking if I wanted to be in the band – it was one of the quickest decisions of my life – I knew the answer would be 100% yes.”
The trio, who were signed to 4AD in 2012, spent much of last year playing the festival circuit, including Green Man and Bestival, as well as supporting Beirut on tour.
They also made their first jaunt across the pond, which included an appearance on the David Letterman Show.
“Letterman was a strange thing,” admits Aguilella. “I remember watching bands I absolutely love on that show – it was pretty overwhelming to play there. The whole day was so bizarre.”
The experience hasn’t made them any more confident on stage though – with Aguilella admitting they are pretty nervous people.
“I don’t think we will ever go on stage and be super confident,” he says. “I guess it’s a good thing. I see a lot of bands that are talented and professional but seem like they are just doing their jobs by going on stage.
“The fact we are stressing out means we are giving everything we’ve got to make sure it’s a good show – I personally prefer that. “I don’t think I can imagine Elena going in a venue full of fans and saying: ‘Good evening Baltimore!’”
Having already released a series of EPs, they have just finished mastering on their debut album, If You Leave, which is set for release on March 18.
The majority of the album is made up of new songs, with only one crossing over from the EPs.
“We wanted it all to fit together,” says Aguilella. “It didn’t feel right to put those EP tracks on the album. We wanted people to listen to it and not skip a couple of songs because they didn’t quite fit in.”
The show at Brighton’s St Mary’s Church is part of a sold-out nationwide tour of atmospheric venues.
“Those places have such a beautiful history,” says Aguilella. “We saw pictures of St Mary’s Church and it looked amazing.
“We want to give people some sort of experience not just from the music. These places seem to fit – I would rather play somewhere beautiful rather than just another venue with a sticky floor.”
- St Mary’s Church, St James’s Street, Brighton, Thursday, January 17. Doors 7pm, SOLD OUT. For more information, visit www.loutpromotions.co.uk
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