The Sun Comes Up For Bellevue Days

Introducing the next exciting thing to come out of Croydon

The Sun Comes Up For Bellevue Days

By Ben Tipple

Jul 27, 2015 14:17

"Ihope my mum likes it,” laughs Alan Smith, co-vocalist and guitarist for Croydon alternative four-piece Bellevue Days when questioned on their main thoughts on the eve of their ‘The Sun Came Up When We Were Young’ EP release. “Well, we were all definitely hoping for people to like it,” bassist and second co-vocalist Joe Blackford agrees. “Your friends and family are never going to be brutally honest with you.”

The band’s debut EP has been building a healthy momentum prior to release, bringing an off-kilter melodic vibe that draws exciting comparisons to scene leaders Brand New. “It sounds a bit clichéd to say, but it has been pretty unexpected,” Blackford muses over the recent attention Bellevue Days have welcomed. “We’ve got a really cool team working with us now who do a much better job than we ever could,” he offers as an explanation for the recent success.

It’s unquestionably a promising start for the band; one which stems from experience and drive. “All of the band have been in other projects for years before,” Smith explains. “I think at the point when we created Bellevue Days we wanted to put our all into it and to just write the best music we possibly can and hope people enjoy it.”

With that, the four songs on ‘The Sun Came Up When We Were Young’ draw from personal experiences; be it relationships, literature or old friends. According to Blackford, there’s even a song about sleeping. “I’m sure there’s more to it than just sleeping,” he backtracks, “but I can’t remember and [Dan Lukes – guitar/vocals] is in Norway right now so sleeping will do.”

Their location has also had a huge part to play in the creative process, not least in providing a platform to get the band noticed. Having grown up in Croydon, now boasting a bustling scene that has recently exported up-and-comers such as Best of Enemies and Bad Sign, Bellevue Days have paid their dues.

“I was 15 when I played my first gig in Croydon,” Smith reminisces. “It’s always felt [like] there was a love and appreciation for all types of music, from hip-hop in the high street to a few cool back alley rock venues. We met a lot of cool bands and nice people, so yeah, it’s been great.”

“Maybe because it’s such a crap place people need to escape with music,” Blackford adds, somewhat tongue-in-cheek. “Jokes aside,” he pulls himself back on track, “there are a select few venues in Croydon which have been instrumental in shaping the current bands. The Scream Lounge was always our stomping ground growing up, playing in previous bands. I think their ‘form a band and you can play here’ attitude encouraged a ton of kids to pick up a guitar.”

It hasn’t all been plain sailing for Bellevue Days, as they have battled with the same demons that inflict themselves upon many local scenes. “In my experience the Croydon scene is unpredictable,” Blackford offers. “You could have a packed out venue on a Tuesday night, then on a Saturday you’re playing to your mum. I think other scenes have a more scheduled routine. It would be cool to get something going here like the whole grunge revival thing that’s going on in Leeds right now.”

Yet, Bellevue Days appear to be pushing themselves towards leadership status. Their emotive and expansive melodies have tapped into a sound once heralded and never forgotten. Their style heavily influenced by cult musical icons with a fanbase willing to nip at the heels of something new; something good.

‘The Sun Came Up When We Were Young’ is just the start, with the band having already recorded their sophomore EP; working alongside producer Jason Wilson whose discography includes releases by You Me At Six, Dinosaur Pile-Up and Fightstar, as well as Reuben’s seminal ‘Racecar Is Racecar Backwards’. With the sun firmly shining on Bellevue Days, there’s no sign of it setting just yet.