In 2019, Scottish Rockers The LaFontaines were riding high following the release of their album
Junior, their first top 40 album, the success of which saw them play some of the biggest shows to
date. While they were expecting this to be their big break, the pandemic decimated their ability to be a
band. Just when they were ready to down tools and call it a day the band have returned with some of
their strongest material yet. Northern Exposure met with the band to find out what has changed.

The album is called ‘Business as Usual’, Kerr you were previously quoted as saying that the
title track was the song that “saved the band”. Was it more difficult going into this record than
others before it?

Kerr: The reason why I said that is the last album, Junior was just before the pandemic hit and we
had just had a Top 40, we had just toured in India, Asia, and all over Europe and it was kind of
starting to fly. Then just suddenly we came back from Asia and the world stopped, man, as it did for
everybody. Any way that we could make a living or just stay alive just disappeared like that. And it
felt like, for me, I was done with it: I was sort of like, fuck this man, this has left me high and dry. I
need to find something else now. And then it was Jamie that saved the band, in essence, because he
sent me a song that, not to be clichéd or cheesy, was an undeniable song. I couldn’t not write to the
tune, you know, and that was the first time that it felt like business as usual, and that became the title
track of the album.

Once you got down to it after that did the rest of the album come together quite quickly or was
it more difficult than that?

Jamie: Well, Kerr’s moved to London now whereas before we were always like 300 days of the year
in the same room. So, we started to do things differently through zoom or sending demos to each
other, whereas before more time would be spent in a rehearsal studio or writing wee songs at

Kerr: Writing [the track ‘Business as Usual’] kind of flowed. But then it was a wee bit like, oh, right.
OK, so where do we go next? I’m not the type of guy that airs his problems, I don’t like to bother people with my shit, you know, I kind of deal with it and that’s it. [Since the last album] I had a son. He’s nearly two now and that was obviously on my mind so much. Three years ago, if you said to me, you are going to write a song about your son I would have said that is the naffest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. What? Why? Who the fuck would listen to that? And I started to write about what was actually on my mind, to see if I could write about other things, and then it just suddenly became this quite personal album, where everything on it, minus one or two tunes, I can say is a story about me.

The new album still sounds recognisably “LaFontaines-esque” but it also sounds like musically
there is a more upbeat feel to it, was this a specific influence going into this record that you
wanted to draw on?

Jamie: A lot of stuff on the album comes from old soul songs that Daz [McCaughey,
guitarist/producer] is really good at sampling so some of the music is still the same sort of rock sound
that we’ve done before, but also a lot of it has been created using computers.
Kerr: Genre is not really a thing that we ever feel confined by. I think with this one, you’re right. It
feels like there are more dance tracks on this. Daz produces everything and obviously he was in that
headspace, and it felt summery and upbeat, and I just liked the whole idea of juxtaposing that with
dark lyrics and I think it’s amazing to see people jump up and down, buzzing off tunes that, if you
strip it back, are not happy.

I’ve seen you describe your sound before as something that “shouldn’t work when written down
on paper, but it does”

Kerr: When we started promoting this album, we said it sounds unique, bold, and Scottish. And that
is exactly what we are. But I’m kind of done trying to describe it. It’s absolutely hampered us on
plenty of occasions: the music industry love things that fit in a box that they can just shoehorn in
between other things that are similar, but if you come and see our band live, we have always stood out
from the rest of the crowd.

The LaFontaines are all about blending genres then. Is there someone who we wouldn’t expect
that you guys would really love to do a collaboration with on a track?

Jamie: Céline Dion.

Who is the most famous person you’ve got saved in your phone book?

Jamie: Céline Dion. I’m messaging her every day, I say, “What about this song, Céline?” She doesn’t
even read them.

Do you feel that this record is your best work yet?

Kerr: In all honesty it is how I feel. I think that if you’re not feeling like that, then it’s time to hang up
the boots. The main thing about any album is that if you can play in a room full of people who don’t
like it and you still feel good about it then that’s a success, and that’s exactly how I feel about this.

Business as Usual is released on Friday 14th June via SO Recording and have a string of instore dates planned during release week! Preorder/Buy Business as Usual HERE

THE LAFONTAINES are set for a big UK tour this September with tickets on sale NOW!

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