Grace Chatto and Neil Amin-Smith of Clean Bandit have been playing classical music together since they were five. But it wasn’t until they met Jack Patterson, who added drums and bass behind their music, that they decided to merge their love for classical and dance music and become a full-fledged band. Clean Bandit, also made up of Patterson’s brother Luke, formed after they performed at the National Rail Disco six years ago and witnessed the response to their music firsthand onstage.
“From that first performance that we did at this club night, we all knew it was something we wanted to do,” Chatto told Radio.com during release week of their debut album, New Eyes. “It was such an electric atmosphere at the gig and it was really exciting.”
New Eyes begins with the tongue-in-cheek “Mozart’s House,” where Love Ssega asks, “So you think electronic music is boring? You think it’s stupid? You think it’s repetitive? Well it is repetitive.” A bold statement, right?
“‘Mozart’s House’ was the first time the sound of the band was discovered,” Amin-Smith said. “Before that, the tracks were more hip-hop based [with] hip-hop instrumentals. ‘Mozart’s House’ was the first foray into dance music that’s now what we do.”
Meanwhile, Patterson said the statement of how electronic music is repetitive has since been taken as a manifesto, unbeknownst to them.
“It was more flippant and more of a joke,” he explained. “Then it stuck and then it made sense to have ‘Mozart’s House’ at the beginning of the album. We didn’t want to take that off because we were attached to it.”