It was around this time last year when The Vamps first performed in Manila. Tonight, they’ll be back at the MOA Arena to — we predict — repeat the pandemonium they’ve previously caused and maybe raise the level of chaos, with fellow bands Before You Exit and The Tide tagging along.
How have the boys been? Catching up with artists can be tough. You’re lucky if you get 15 minutes with them. When you rewind the conversation, all you’ll have are bits of words and phrases that made you laugh, think deeper, and go, “Huh?” Still, thanks to The Vamps for sharing with us what’s up with their music, life, and Connor. Get to know The Vamps even better, in 15 words:
1. SYNTHY — One of the adjectives the band used to describe their current sound. “The first album is very polished, folk-influenced and quite organic-sounding,” they said. “On this album we want to try an electronic, synthy, ‘80s-influenced direction.”
2. TOURING — Something that has helped shaped them musically and personally in between recording albums. “We’ve experienced a lot of new places, met a lot of people, cultivated relationships,” they said. “We grew up a bit in all those years and whatever we experienced from touring, we hope to have captured them in the second album.”
3. SOLD-OUT — The outcome of their first Manila concert, which was one of their favorite shows last year. “We’re not just saying that,” said The Vamps. “We just put on a show in an arena, which is quite risky and weird for a first-time visit, but we did it and it literally sold out.”
4. SCARY — What fans do to be close to them. “Running in roads is pretty scary,” was an example they gave. They also said fans following them around is the craziest form of dedication (glad they see it that way). “They always find us,” they added. Now that is scary.
5. CEBU — Where they’ll have a signing session on Sunday (Jan. 31) after their concert. (But you already knew that.)
6. LOUD — How they expect you to behave tonight — you’ve set the bar high the last year. “(Filipinos) are probably the loudest crowd we’ve ever played to,” remarked The Vamps.
7. #1 — The rank a song they haven’t released has reached on the Philippine charts. “The Philippines is actually the first country we’ve been number one in. It’s awesome that on the other side of the world, we really have perceptive and supportive fans,” they shared. “Even of Facebook, the Philippines is the most active fanbase. That’s amazing so we’re always going to try to come back.”
8. KUNG FU — A theme of a movie they’re connected to. The Vamps released their version of Kung Fu Fighting for the movie Kung Fu Panda. They’d love to do something like it again, and do more of it.
9. PHONE CALL — A simile for a The Vamps song. The band doesn’t want to write things that alienate people. “We want to write about real-life scenarios. Listening to our music is like listening to a phone call, or a conversation with a friend,” they said.
10. CHEEKBONES — A big factor in their fame. Asked why their songs appeal to a diverse group of listeners, James offered that it’s really Brad attracting all the fans. “Brad is very cute,” he said. “It’s really Brad’s and Tristan’s cheekbones.”
11. BOY BAND — What they are not but often labeled as; also what they have no problems being called as. “As long as people are enjoying the music it doesn’t really matter,” they said.
12. RAMONES — The print on the T-shirt James was wearing today; also one of his dad’s favorite bands.
13. RISK — Subject of the song they dedicate to their Filipino fans. “Risk It All. That’s the one that connected with the people here,” they shared. “We were shocked because we never released that as a single anywhere and it went number one for so long. It’s exciting to hear it back (being sung by the crowd tonight).”
14. KNEE — The part of the body Connor twisted at a recent gig. He’s resting at the moment but he’s ok and he’ll join the guys on stage tonight.
15. JUNGLE — Where they’d like to go for a vacation. They shared, “the perfect vacation would be seeing things we don’t normally see at home, like (famous) landmarks and the jungle.”