• Charlotte Claber

Louder with Luke Rainsford

Ahead of Slam Dunk, Charlotte sat down with Luke Rainsford to talk his new music and plans for the future:

Recently you’ve been playing with a full band, what made you take that step instead of playing solo?

Playing solo is really cool but I get quite uncomfortable with it sometimes. I love the vibe and I love that I get to hang out with people when it’s full band. When I’m solo, even if the show’s really cool and really busy, I’m just on my own! Now I get to bring friends along, everyone in my band and crew are all good friends of mine. I’m around some people I don’t get to see very often as well and it’s just really cool to hang out. They all love the music as well and it’s just a way to bring friends together.

So you’ve played more and more shows over the last year, you’re selling records and getting more shows! How does that feel?

It’s weird in a good way. This time last year I was playing solo shows with a band called Craterface and it was to like 5 people which was great but now people actually show up! It makes all the hard work worth it and I would never take it for granted. I really appreciate everyone helping me and supporting me because I never thought it’d actually happen. When I first started writing songs if it made one person happy then even that was great to me. The response this past year has been unlike anything I could’ve ever dreamed of.

What’s your favourite part of touring, whether it’s solo or full band?

Just seeing new places! On one tour we got to go to Plymouth and I’d never been before but we get to go to places I love like Liverpool. Liverpool is one of my favourite cities. I wouldn’t usually travel to these sorts of places because of money and time and such but it’s great to have the time and the excuses to come hang out. I also love when playing shows people will come and talk to me but talk to me openly which I really appreciate. It definitely helps with how I speak about things on stage and people seem to come to my shows to talk mental health.

The last release spoke so openly, and told many stories. Is the new release as heavy as the previous?

It covers different themes. It’s more a conversation with myself, it’s a tough listen but I’ve tried to keep it fairly poppy and melodic shelled because some of the lyrics can get quite tough so I am sort of dreading playing them live as they are really personal and I don’t know how it’s going to go. I’d say it’s definitely as dark as the last album.

Everything you write is from the heart and from experiences, do you find it easier to put everything into lyrics as a place to vent? At first yes, it made sense and was a way I dealt with it, it was a way to convey to people how i felt without the awkward conversations or people worrying they were going to say the wrong thing to me. Recently has been great, people have been opening conversations about mental health more and more so people have asked me more about how I’m doing and I really appreciated it. These shows have really helped me and I think that it says a lot, no matter what fucked up shit is happening these shows are a safe space.

You break the stigma that men don’t talk out about mental health as much as they should, why do you feel this is so important?

I think a lot of men are like conditioned when they grow up, believing that it is weak to grow up and show emotions and you can see it a lot in old film and TV, they are always toughing up. I think the strongest thing you can do sometimes is hit your weakest point and get through it and come out the other side.I hate the idea of “man up” it’s so damaging, whether you’re man/woman/non-binary, any way you deal with mental health is your own way, sometimes people are more open other times people are quiet and won’t talk out about it. Rather than being forced to talk about it, find your own way you prefer to vent and get through it. No one should be afraid to talk out.

Finally we can’t not mention UK Pop Punk and Trade, your records are constantly posted and discussed.

It’s great and it’s an interesting group, they show a lot of love for me which I really appreciate, I do try and stay away for some parts but regardless the admins are great, everyone likes what I do and are really appreciative and that’s more than I could ever ask for!