Want to brighten up your week? Fancy jumping on board a runaway train that's hurtling towards Somerset with no plans to slam on the brakes any time ever? Ever closed your eyes and wished for a genie who would sing their heart out and dance on a piano like a deamon? ;) Well, for any and all of this, you've come to the right place... as we take a small theatrical bow, wave our hands about like we're on the fairground waltzers and present our little interview with the inspiring blur of relentless talent that is Tankus the Henge.
If you've seen the band play any gigs, festivals or events, you'll know exactly what we're talking about and you'll be ready for their Four Thoughts. If you haven't, strap yourself in and enjoy the rollercoaster ride as we chat to lead singer, songwriter, piano guru and all round cool hat wearer, Jaz Delorean :) (We've got their new EP, 'You can do anything', on in the background as we write and we CAN'T STOP LISTENING!).
1. For people who haven’t seen you live or don’t know much about you yet, can you tell us a bit about Tankus the Henge & your music?
Absolutely. We're six guys armed with piano, bass, guitar, drums, tenor sax and trombone, sometimes with one or two extra players. We have a pretty much non-stop show consisting of entirely original music, veering wildly between hard rock, sweet harmonies and wonky jazz. Groove é vida! The band is made up of cartoon-like players who have lived several lives and have spun their voodoo in other bands... but this is the one they've naturally gravitated to, and we look out for each other.
The past aside (as it does not exist and never will), we believe we're on a path into the unknown with adventure, positivity and hope being our compass. We may all have donned the metaphorical blindfold, but that doesn't mean we're not at the helm. You may be, in fact, a construction of the collective consciousness of Tankus the Henge. Maybe we don't exist either... maybe none of this is real!
2. You play shed loads of gigs & you’re known for your ‘relentless touring schedule’. Which of your recent gigs stands out the most to you & why?
The next one. Always the next one will be the greatest show we've ever done. We have a different idea of the mechanics of time. Every show we've ever played is happening right now. When you watch us perform, all our timelines are colliding like cosmic freight trains at that exact moment, and we all experience it together. That's why it feels like amygdala apple pie.
We do play more gigs than any band we know, and we're not about to slow down. Rock n roll is about having one foot on the gas, and your head in the clouds and it's supposed to be a rollercoaster. We're riding that rollercoaster and building the track at the same time. The whole thing is held together with silk and a nail gun. As I write, we're careering along a French motorway and Jamie (drums) is leaning out of the window attempting to gaffa tape part of the van back on. We can't stop. We have no time! We have all the time!
3. What’s your new song 'You Can Do Anything' about? Who’s the person who wants to be with you but not be seen with you? 😉
It's about travelling, and loneliness. The longing for human affection. Being willing to sacrifice everything for that fleeting moment of truth - gone in an instant, as you slip away into the carnival of the world. Most of the songs are based on real events, with the characters sung about never knowing their involvement. Some of these real life enigmas are aware, however, and happily sing along. A few of us don't actually live anywhere. We live on the road and play gigs all year round. We're particularly looking forward to The Godney Gathering. Bring on the Summer in Somerset!
4. Tell us a secret about Tankus the Henge that no-one else knows.
The act of telling you would cause a paradox. A little known fact about the band is that we are all born on a New Moon. Isn't that strange?
P.S. Have you ever fallen off the piano?
Of course. But much like skating, it's about the landing. The piano is designed and built for me to abuse like that. The top is shaped out of Cedar of Lebanon, after it came down in an electrical storm in Queen Victoria's estate on the Isle of Wight. You can't buy it. It was smuggled out and turned in to a magic piano!
Ahhhh - we want a magic piano - and seriously, if you haven't seen the guys perform and Jaz's awesome piano playing, dancing and jumping, you need to! We were blown away by the electricity and energy from the stage when we saw them at Valley Fest & the Childrens's World Charity gig at Glastonbury Town Hall in May.
The Godney Gathering on July 21st is sold out, but Tankus are hurtling back to Somerset to play the Chapel Arts Centre in Bath on December 7th and, if you want to catch them in Bristol, they're at Thekla on November 23rd.
Now, where can I get me some of that amygdala apple pie in the meantime? Not sure they sell it in the Shepton Mallet Tescos! ;)