Taking their name from the Greek god of requited love and avenger of unrequited love, Anteros’ “bitter dream pop” juxtaposes catchy riffs and melodies with gritty, sometimes sinister lyrics. “Performing is like therapy,” says Hayden. “We find it best to let out what's inside Pandora's box while maintaining a fun sound.”
The video for the title track of their EP, Drunk, shows lead singer and former MTV Spain presenter, Laura Hayden, knocking back shots in what looks like the function room of a working men’s club. She sings the lyrics: “I’m so drunk and in love with you; been doing all the things that I shouldn’t do,” while wearing a bubblegum pink wig and sequinned gown.
The Drunk EP is the band’s first release with guitarist Jackson Couzens and follows the success of their Breakfast EP, in 2016. Writing new music is a collaborative process; “Everyone is given freedom with how they play or re-write their parts,” says Hayden. “If there's divided opinions, we take a vote.”
Having been selected as one of Annie Mac’s New Names last year, the band were invited to perform at Glastonbury’s Other Stage. However, Anteros are determined to continue their success and have no visions of slowing down now. “Glastonbury was a great festival to tick off of the bucket list, but it also really made us want to go home and work as hard as we can so one day we can go back and play it all over again,” says Hayden.
Following the release of their Drunk EP on 14 April, we asked Laura Hayden and her bandmates (bassist, Josh Rumble, guitarist, Jackson Couzens and drummer, Harry Balasz) about the tracks that inspired their record.
Fleetwood Mac - Dreams
Jackson: It’s such a simple song yet it does so much to you. We love bands with great harmonies and this is a great example. When the chorus hits, the vocals send a shiver down your spine.
Blur - Girls and Boys
Josh: Blur have been a big influence in terms of lyrical attitude and melodic basslines. There's always been an appeal to the swagger and forthright nature to their songs and ‘Girls and Boys’ embodies that. It's that honesty and outspoken way of songwriting that has influenced how we write.
Kids - MGMT
Josh: This song is a work of genius. The synth line alone has inspired so many songs since its release; we can remember the first time hearing ‘Kids’ and wanting to write something like that. It's also simple and doesn't over complicate itself unnecessarily. You also can't not dance to.
Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
Josh: Getting to work with Nick Hodgson when he produced the Drunk EP was amazing, as the Kaiser Chiefs are a favourite band of ours. Ruby is such an amazing pop song, but being played by a band retains its honesty and that is something we've always wanted to emulate. It's a real benchmark song.
No Doubt - Just A Girl
Laura: This is one of my all time favourite tracks since it came out. It's so liberating: the kind of track that makes you want to head bang like there's nobody watching. It's empowering, and beautifully ironic. She calls out to misogynistic men as she sings such self deprecating words with so much venom, proving the complete opposite.
Ace of Base - All That She Wants
Harry: We love the way that this song works as a whole. The riffs in this tune are so catchy, and the groove is consistent. We love how well the parts work together.
Patti Smith - Because the Night
Laura: Patti is such an inspiration to me, both in terms of lyrics and delivery. When we first recorded vocals for ‘High, Goodbye’, I felt like a scared little mouse. It’s such a personal song, I was scared of letting go and it coming across as cheesy, I was also more concerned about hitting every note than the delivery. I listened to a lot of Patti that night, and when we recorded vocals the next day, I realised the delivery should have been the main point of focus. You can be sassy and vulnerable at the same time, you can be strong and make it sound delicate.
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
Josh: When we first wrote the song 'Anteros' we had been listening to ‘The Suburbs’ by Arcade Fire quite a lot. The real driving and crunchy nature to that album, sonically, stuck a chord with us. It was so modern yet so familiar, with composition that was so thought out; every part had its place. It progresses so naturally and goes exactly where you want it to go. We can listen to 'The Suburbs' on repeat.
Annie Lennox - No More I Love You’s
Laura: It’s such a heartfelt, yet cool and understated, heart-wrenching song. Annie's honest delivery is the cherry on top.
Arctic Monkeys - I Bet That You Look Good On The Dancefloor
Jackson: We love the rawness of this song, it has so much attitude and energy. When this came out every kid wanted to get their mates together and start a band. It’s so honest, the music is powerful, the lyrics are clever and it’s influenced us and a million others.