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The Gadsdens: Being Covered on X Factor Would be Amazing

Robbie Williams, X Factor, Topman’s latest 34” jeans… Conversation takes a few unexpected turns with pop-soul UK hybrids The Gadsdens.

The music success equation is quite a simple formula. Musical brevity and talent must be backed up by good looks. Rihanna didn’t get a number one with Ave Maria. Kylie Minogue can’t warble every octave on the chart. And Britney Spears’ musical talents tend to lie under her C-cup. Lucky then that UK up-and-comers (don’t you just fucking hate that term?) The Gadsdens have both qualities in spades. Though they’ll do their best deny, deny, deny. “Are we hot? I think you’ve been misguided by the wonders of Photoshop, for instance our drummer has a glass eye,” the lead singer chimes. Well, at least they, along with the British giggers, agree with the other half of the musical necessity: they’re a fucking decent set of performers. Elements of pop. Elements of blue-eyed soul. Sing-along hooks, tinky-tonk pianos. Jody Gadsden’s wavering awkward voice (yes his surname is the bands name, clever, no? Just like Alison Goldfrapp and Jon Bon Jovi)… on paper they’re seemingly flawless, and I‘m doing my best with no reward to find said flaws until… wait, is that a Robbie Williams-replica swallow tattoo?
Jody Gadsden: Why of course. He is a national treasure and aesthetically everything I aspire to be.
Dazed Digital: Do you want to be sex symbols like he *ahem* thinks he is too? (let us not forget his housewife-favourite topless calendar all but a decade ago)
JG: Naturally we’d rather our music led to favourable articles and reviews than our looks…
DD: Ok, let’s keep it music…
JG: Yes
DD: You're not quite pop - a bit too off-kilter - so what are you?
JG: I think it’s better not to completely fit the mould. It’s good to keep the essential elements of what a good song is whilst keeping to your own style and sound. How dull would it be to not be slightly off-kilter? Most of our influences are artists that don’t always fit the mould.
DD: You look like East End Indie kids but that's not your sound...
JG: We all live around there mainly so it’s hard not to end up dressing a little in keeping with the area. I believe, whilst we‘ve still got figures we may as well flaunt our 34inch legs with the best slim fit jeans Topman can offer. That’s the crux of the East End Indie look isn’t it?
DD: If your studio wanted you to dress and look more "soul" would you do it?
JG: I’m not even sure what a more "soul" person would dress like?
DD: Babyphat
JG: …!
DD: You're constantly compared to Tracy Chapman, she's a woman and you're not… what does that say about your voice?
JG: It’s not an insult in the slightest, I’ve always used my singing voice in a feminine way – my delivery is less direct than the usual male offerings, I falsetto, and trill and vibrato and sometimes over complicate simple lines. I’ve always preferred the female voice and the way certain female musicians like Joni Mitchell and PJ Harvey annunciate and express their vocals.
DD: You're also compared to Michael Stipe - very different to Chapman - what's the weirdest comparison and which comparison has been the strangest?
JG: I liked the Michael Stipe comparison – he is one of my all time musical idols. I’ve been compared vocally to Antony Hegarty too, which was also great. None have been too weird, I suppose Tracy Chapman, what with her being a lady and me not, gets that accolade
DD: There's not loads out there about you, what would you definitely want people to know?
JG: We did have some extensive google pages going on but I think the town of Gadsden in Alabama, USA, have seen this and notified their tourist board! They seem to be winning the fight at the moment.
All I’d want people to know is that we are a band hell-bent on writing and producing great pop songs that will stand the test of time. I want to see one of our songs covered by an X Factor contestant in 2020 – that would be amazing….
The Gadsdens are continuing their London tour throughout 2009.