Ahead of his UK tour and appearance at Vans Warped (of which we will be in attendance at), we caught up with Itch for a chat – see what was said below!
Tell our readers a bit about yourself and what you’re all about.
My name is Itch. I used to be in a political forward-thinking punk band called The King Blues. Now, I am solo and attacking Hip-Hop with the exact same mentality. My favourite bands are The Clash and Public Enemy. I’m all about trying to push things forward and create something new and exciting for kids to riot to.
What’s it like to be asked to play an event like Vans Warped?
It’s a great honour. I actually went to The Warped Tour the first time it came to the UK at Reading Festival many years ago and was lucky enough to do the entire U.S. leg this summer. The atmosphere and camaraderie amongst the people playing and working was truly special. To be able to represent in London is a dream come true.
How does it feel to be asked to play Vans Warped’s warm up shows across the country?
Again, it’s a great honour to know I’m representing such a historic, successful tour. It’s weird that, as a Hip-Hop act, I’ve been able to headline and it makes sense, but I think that’s where my music’s at right now. It crosses over and I think Warped Tour does too. It’s going to be my first headline tour of the UK. So, I’m crazy excited. To get the endorsement of the big dawg Kevin Lyman and have a great package of bands means it’s going be a real event.
How did the single with Adam Lazzara come about? What was he like to work with?
We were looking for someone to sing the hook and different names were thrown around. I can be quite tough on a lot of new rock bands. Often, I just don’t believe them when they’re screaming, but when Adam sings, I can hear the pain in his voice. He really means it. My manager used to tour manage them so he got a tape into Adam’s hands. We really didn’t expect to hear anything back, but a week later, he flew to our studio in L.A. and was right there recording it. He killed it. He’s such a shy, humble person, but give him a mic and he becomes someone else. It was very inspiring getting to work with him and I was lucky enough to be able to perform this song with him on Warped Tour.
Is there an album in the pipeline and when can we expect it to be released?
There is an album that we’re going to put out at some point next year. I’ve been working on it for years now and I’ve written so many songs. My producer John Feldman and I must have put together near on 100 songs and these are just the very hottest picks. I’m so excited about the idea of getting to play it for people. I think it’s going to be pretty refreshing because it just doesn’t sound like anything else out there right now. We purposely tried to just write the best songs we could and not pay any attention to what was cool at the time and I think that worked to our advantage.
The video for Homeless Romantic is really detailed. Who came up with the concept for the video and do you think it’s important to do more than just a performance video?
I was lucky enough to work with a sick director called Hannah Lux Davies who is a true visionary. She does all the Lil Wayne videos and stuff. She’d got such a great eye. The concept of the video was really her idea. We had a good chat and I explained that I didn’t want it to be a sob story; I wanted to show the camaraderie and unity of street kids, to show an alternative way of life a lot of people don’t even know exists and she got it spot on. I have no problem with performance videos as they can be really powerful too, but I definitely prefer a video with a concept as it can bring out more of the song. It can amplify parts people may have missed.
Catch iTch on tour in the UK at the following dates:
16 November: Warped Tour UK, Alexandra Palace, London
18 November: Cockpit, Leeds
19 November: King Tuts, Glasgow
20 November: Roadhouse, Manchester
21 November: Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff
22 November: The Underworld, London