Enter Shikari’s sets are about as frenetic and loud as you can get, but does all that jumping about on stage require a body in tip-top condition, or risk burn-out?
Does performing count as a workout?
If that couldn’t be counted then I wouldn’t know what else could be. High-energy performance is something we’ve always done – it’s all about the passion. Even if you look back throughout human history, music and dance are so interlinked, and even getting into the neuroscience of it, as soon as your brain recognises a beat, your motor cortex will start triggering straight away – it will be wanting you to move.
How would you rate your fitness on a scale of one to 10?
I was kind of looking forward to coming off tour, because during the second half of this year I couldn’t get into any sort of routine, so now I’m home I’m trying to focus a bit more and get my fitness up, because it’s dwindled a bit. So I’m maybe a six or seven – I’m not a fitness maniac but I definitely want to get fitter by our next tour. I’m not old, but the older you get, you more you have to keep an eye on the belly…
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What do you do to motivate yourself?
I need that fitness on stage, because there’s lots of different types of vocals I do, but a lot of it is quite high end. It takes a lot of work on the diaphragm and your lungs have got to be full. You’ve got to concentrate on your breathing so you know you can do it, then add in the running around like a headless chicken aspect of it and it becomes quite difficult.
How is your fitness fingerprint unique to you and your career?
It’s difficult to fit it all in. Once you’re at venues there is a bit of time, so I’ll go for a jog. I prefer jogging in any sort of area that’s green – it’s good for your mental health as well, just to be around woods or fields. It’s nice to get that fresh air and clear your head from the inner city business.
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Other than jogging the only other thing I do is yoga before a show. A big part of my job includes being energetic, so I’m quite lucky in that aspect. My girlfriend will get in after working behind a computer all day – it’s really tough because the last thing you want to do is have a workout.
I get that because when we’re off tour we’re in the studio and we’re sitting behind a computer producing music. It’s a horrible loop to break, so you have to get your willpower up and try to fit something in. Even if you do 10 minutes of something, it’s good. If a lot of people – myself included – can’t fit in an hour then they think it’s just not worth it. I think that’s a really bad headspace to fall into.
Enter Shikari headline Slam Dunk Festival on May 27-29, tickets are available from slamdunkmusic.com (opens in new tab)
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