Interview: Bristol-based Britpop band Discount Columbo

Article by Amy Stirling March 24, 2018
Discount Columbo at Moles nightclub in Bath

On Thursday 15th March we hosted a milk promo event at Moles nightclub in Bath. Opening the show was Bristol-based Britpop four-piece Discount Columbo. Writer Amy Stirling had a chat with lead singer Jake Sheppard before the evening to get the lowdown on our opening act.

How did you all meet?

We met and formed whilst at university studying music. Originating from various parts of the UK, and with one member from Bath Spa University, we connected over a joint love of The Beatles, Oasis and more.

And where did the name Discount Columbo come from?

The name Discount Columbo is taken from a song of the same name released on our latest EP ‘To Say Exactly’. The song was written about my experience moving to a big city and adjusting to the life that comes with it. There are references to student lifestyle, having no money, no hope and being surrounded by drugs and pizza in equal measure. ‘Discount Columbo’ is the title of the character that undertakes this journey, likening it to a cheap imitation of Christopher Columbus’ discovery of America.


Having our dedicated group of fans see us play on a big sold-out gig was a proud moment for us


I love the covers of your three EP’s. Is there any meaning behind the artwork?

The EP artwork is a visual representation of the themes of songs on each EP. The first EP ‘Take As Much Time’ was about discovery and trying new things and this is represented by a telescope. The follow up ‘As You Need’ dealt with relationships and love. The umbrella represented shelter and comfort much like how a relationship operates for the people in it. Our latest work ‘To Say Exactly’ is more energetic and lively than the previous efforts and utilised a more rock-heavy sound. The bold and strong nature of these songs lent itself to the elephant with the purple and yellow colour scheme. With these three EP’s being part of a larger four-EP collection it was very important to us that they had an identifiable aesthetic that continued with each release.

What would you say is the best gig you’ve ever played?

We’ve had a number of gigs that have stood out to us as being special so far and with each one that passes we feel more optimistic for the future. One of the first times we had a room of people singing the words to our songs was at Loralie’s ‘Circles’ EP launch and that was a real taste of where we wanted to progress in the future. Our sold-out support slot with Space at The Fleece last year was another highlight, having our dedicated group of fans see us play on a big sold-out gig was a proud moment for us. The ‘To Say Exactly’ EP launch was our biggest headline show to date and we made a real effort to make it special for everyone who came. We also played our biggest festival so far last year and to have such a good reception was a great motivator for what we’d like to achieve this year.


And do you have a favourite song to play live?

We have a few new songs that we are really enjoying playing at the moment. It’s important to us that some new songs have become staples in our set because it means we are confident in the direction we are headed. Songs like ‘Let It Be’ and ‘You Are’ are examples of where we want to be heading musically and are current favourites in our set. Definitely ones to look out for at the milk launch!

Bath is always a great place for us to play as we’ve made lots of friends here during our time playing as a band. It’s going to be great to see everyone there and to help launch milk with a bang!

Be sure to keep up with Discount Columbo on Facebook and visit their website for tour information. Their newest single ‘Left Behind’ is out now and is available on Spotify and iTunes.

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