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Soliciting Sumer at Tech Fest 2015!

Tech Fest Sumer interview

This year alone, various Monolith staff have seen Londoners Sumer at least a half dozen times. Their 2014 debut album The Animal You Are continues to hold our collective attention like few other first time outings, and even live, for some reason it seems impossible to tire of them.

We thought we’d put that theory to the test by chatting to them in person after their recent Tech Fest set. Guitarist/vocalist Ian, bassist Taria and drummer Toby stepped into the firing line to discuss seatbelt safety, celebrity sex in lifts, and ugly puppies.

What is the craziest conspiracy you’ve ever heard?

Ian: That the twin towers were crashed into…

By the American government?

Taria: No, spaceships

Toby: You’re safer if you don’t wear a seatbelt. I’d class that as a conspiracy theory

Taria: That was just Jim’s fun fact for the day.

Ian: That was just fucking nonsense. I nearly got nicked this morning because I didn’t have any insurance on my car it turns out so I nearly had my car seized and we didn’t play.

Taria: But you got stopped because Jim wasn’t wearing his seatbelt

Ian: Because its fucking not 1970, because he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt so we got pulled over, and then he tried to tell us that more people die from wearing seatbelts. so that’s the craziest shit I’ve ever heard.

It’s not true, but yes. I’ve heard that before

Toby: Exactly! Jim can you hear this?

Taria: We’re gonna march you in there and get you to tell him that

You should probably tell Simon that because Simon probably knows the statistics off by heart because he’s that kind of guy

Toby: Yeah, arrive alive.


Where’s the worst place you’ve been sick?


Taria:: I was sick last night.

(More laughter)

Ian: Oh yeah, but that’s not the worst place you’ve been sick though

Taria: No it’s not. I’ve projectiled on the car next to us.


On the car next to you?!

Taria: Yeah..

Ian: In the door of my Astra

Where was that?

Taria: In the car park just down there. So don’t tell the people who were parked next to us

Hopefully they won’t work it out when this gets published.

Taria: Yeah, hopefully. We weren’t in the orange and white camper van next to you

Now you’ve just given it away!


Toby: I’m not really someone who’s sick though

Ian: He’s not a sick boy

Taria: No

Toby: I don’t get sick when I drink too much I just spin out and speed about

Which celebrity would you like to be stuck in a lift with?

Taria: That’s a tough one, because do you go with someone you want to have sex with or do you go with someone you can have an interesting conversation with?

Toby: A celebrity you want to have sex with, are you that shallow?

Taria: Am I that shallow?

Toby: Just throwing it out there. You suggested it.

Taria: I’m just saying there’s 2 possible avenues here

Would it really be romantic though?

Taria: I think it could work, have you not seen the Mindy project?

I have not

Taria: she gets stuck in a lift with some hot doctor guy and it just goes from there

Toby: That just seems a bit rapey

Ian: Harry Connick Jr?

That’s an interesting choice

Ian: So I could ask him about his dazzling good looks, and his…

Taria: Oh, now who’s shallow?!

Ian: He’s a good looking boy, and he’s a great singer. I’m not gay.

Taria: No?

Toby: A little bit

Ian: A little bit

It’s okay if you are. There’s no judgement here! (Laughs)

Taria: I don’t know, there’s too many to choose from

Ian: I’d like to be stuck in a lift with Toby, Toby’s a bit of a celebrity

Toby: A celebrity to you. I’d be stuck in a lift with Ian cause he’s like, he’s my star

Ian: Can’t nick my answer man, that’s just

Taria: I’m just gonna say Eddie Vedder would be my er

Ian: Oh alright let’s all go for Eddie Vedder then!

Toby: Danny Carey

Ian: Oh it’s all coming out now!

Toby: Just so I can touch his arms

I literally spoke to someone yesterday who was saying that Danny Carey is a terrible drummer.

Toby: WHAT?!

Ian: Did you smack him in the face?

I did not

Ian: You should have. clearly they’re mental

Sumer Tech Fest 2015 - Ian Hill - Jo Moolenschot.jpg.JPG

Ian Hill: guitars and vocals. Photo credit: Jo Moolenschot.

What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done?

Ian: Playing at Tech Fest at 2 in the afternoon

Taria: Hungover. Mine is abseiling down the Spinnaker tower in Portsmouth. That was hands down the fucking scariest thing I’ve ever done, it was horrific. But I loved it at the same time

Toby: Mine’s probably sledging straight into a lamp post, that was pretty scary.

Taria: Where was that, in Alton?

Toby: Yeah, on a really steep hill.

Ian: Maybe every time I take my motorbike out is a death moment and I just shit myself when I get home. As boring as that is yeah. they just pulled out in front of him and he swerved, and let go.

Taria: Yeah, that’s the biggest problem. People don’t pay attention to bikers.

A friend got hit last year and completely shattered his wrist. He’s got this really gnarly scar up his arm.

Toby: Yeah, it’ll do that. A friend of mine actually put his leg up through his liver. It went into his body, and he said to me “it’s not when, it’s how bad.”

Yeah, that’s the thing, if you have a motorbike accident, you’re lucky to be alive.

Toby/Ian: Yeah, exactly.

Taria: And it’s not that unlikely either.

Toby: Your whole body just crumples.

And it’s not even if you’re a reckless driver, other people on the road just don’t pay fucking attention to you.

All: Yeah, exactly.

Randomly got serious there…THIS ISN’T SUPPOSED TO BE SERIOUS!


What do blind people see in their dreams?

Toby: Colours.

Taria: I don’t know, we should ask Scott.

Toby: They probably see all that Google, neural network stuff.

Taria: Get me in a lift with Eddie Vedder.

Ian: Yeah we’ll put Taria in a lift and we’ll get the answer for you.

Taria: Shades of Red, what is it, shades of something, you know what I mean. In Betterman.

Toby: We see in colours, we don’t dream in red or something.

Taria: Red. We’re going with red! (Pause) I need more cider.


What Nickelback song would you cover?

Taria: None

Toby: No there is one, I think it’s the latest one, the one about the coke machine?

Ian: Yeah, fuck it we’ll do that

Taria: Isn’t there some dodgy lyrics in that?

Toby: There’s some non word lyrics,


Taria: Yeah, that’s it!

Toby: No, it’s a graph isn’t it? There’s a graph.



Ian: It’s fucking awful

Toby: But brilliant. We’ll just cover that.

Taria: I literally don’t know any Nickelback songs

Sumer Tech Fest 2015 - Taria Dawson - Jo Moolenschot.jpg.JPG

Taria Dawson: bass. Photo credit: Jo Moolenschot.

Sumer are stranded on a desert island, who do you eat first?

Ian: Taria

Taria: Why!?

Toby: That was straight off the cuff!

Taria: How was that so instant!?

Ian: I don’t want to eat any of the boys.

Taria: You don’t want to eat a man is what you’re saying. Great, thanks Ian, cheers.

Now you know what’s going through his mind

Taria: I don’t want to know what’s going through his mind. I’ve spent the last 5 years trying not to know what’s going through his mind.

You are offered a spot on the bill of your dreams, but you have to kill a puppy Does the puppy die?

Toby: Yeah of course!

Taria: This is like a Kingsman thing, where they’re like “you have to shoot your puppy now”. It depends what make it is, if it’s an ugly puppy.

Ian: What “MAKE” it is?!

It’s the cutest puppy that’s ever lived.

Taria: If it was an ugly puppy then I’d just shoot it in the face


Well there we go.

Taria: You heard it here first.

What’s the least accurate thing you’ve ever read someone write about you guys?

Taria: Oh, okay. We did get something written by the…

Ian: That we were good. Sumer played really well today

Toby: We were like “woah”. I don’t know, we haven’t really been lucky enough for people to write about us enough. Apart from the interview that was published in Prog magazine, our dad is not a concert pianist!

Taria: Oh yeah cause I was like “I didn’t know that Tim and Toby’s dad was a concert pianist”

Toby: They just blurted it out, I was like “is he?, He’s not is he?”

Taria: But he did actually say that though, they didn’t make it up, Tim said that

Oh no this is Tim being…Tim.

But it’s still not accurate. What about someone saying something about you, someone coming up to you and saying “that Never Gonna Give You Up song you did was amazing!”

Taria: Actually I do that a lot, I go up to people who I thought were in bands and go “that was awesome man”, I did it earlier and they were like “I wasn’t in that last band”

Toby: And I had one last week where I was…

(Taria) I was like “oh, sorry. I’m just gonna go over here now”

He’s like, “I did nothing, but hi and thanks”

Taria: He’s like “I was just taking the drums off the stage”

What would be the title of your autobiography?

Ian: Shovel.

Taria: Give me back my alcohol.

Toby: Shovel?

Ian: Tubthumping.

Toby: The shovels and the tubthumpers.

Taria: Just shovel.

Toby: Hope nobody understands this conversation.


Do we get an explanation for that, is it an inside joke?

All: No

Taria: Well, it is a bit of a joke

Ian: Moving on, it is a fucking joke yeah

Well that’s the thing, you have to read the autobiography to understand it!

Taria Coming to a WHSmith’s store near you in like February 20…


Taria: …20?

What’s the worst and best thing about the internet?

Taria: Facebook is the worst thing that ever happened to the internet

Ian: Pornography

Toby: Is the best thing?

Ian: Yeah

Taria: Pornography and Facebook, there you go!

Now for the two most important questions you will ever be asked in your entire career. Who’s got the band MILF?

Toby: I’ve never either of your mums.

And Taria you can do DILF if you want

Taria: I’ve never met your dad, Kev, there we go

Toby: Sorry Kev.

Ian: What’s wrong with my dad?

Taria: I’ve never met either of your parents, your dad’s hot.

Ian: My mum’s lovely but I’ve got to say, Tim and Toby’s mum, she is fucking delightful.

Taria: Their parents are fucking amazing, not that we’d like to fuck them but…

Ian: She’s definitely a MIL – a Mum I Like. I just want a good herbal tea and a nice hug.

Taria: Our parents are like in their 70’s you know so none of us have young parents.

Ian: Yeah, she’s lovely.

How would you prepare a toddler to be cooked?

Taria: Skin it

Toby: Do that thing like with a dog where you pull on the legs and it splits down the middle.


Taria: Spit roast, like a hog roast, stick a pole through it

Ian: Up through.

Toby: The child.

Taria: Yeah whatever, we don’t need to go into that. Although spit roast is like a dirty thing.

Ian: I’m out of my depth.

Taria: I can’t believe that we don’t have a lighter.

I can’t believe you’ve never roasted a toddler before

Taria: Well, never say never

Thanks for taking part guys!

All: No problem, it was a laugh!

You can get yourselves a copy of the band’s stunning debut album The Animal You Are via Bandcamp below! Sumer are due to play September’s The Facemelter in support of Tacoma Narrows Bridge Disaster’s album launch, and will also be playing Mammothfest this October. Full dates and details on their Facebook page!

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