It is difficult not to be excited by Meanwhile. Sounding somewhere between Prince and the Pet Shop Boys, the former Home Counties dweller (born Tom Andrews), creates dance-able songs with great hooks. On tour with La Roux and signed to Fiction Records, the future for Meanwhile looks as bright as their glorious Technicolor pop.

First of all, how are things?

Thanks for asking; never better.

Some readers might not have heard Meanwhile yet, how would you describe your sound?

Eclectic; self-indulgent for the sole benefit of catharsis. Less seriously, situational soundtracks in pop shaped boxes

You’re in esteemed company signed to Fiction (Tame Impala, Crystal Castles, Elbow), does that add pressure?

Not at all – the only pressure at Fiction is to remain true to your art. They were one of my favourite labels growing up; it’s a case of making them proud rather than appeasing them.

There is certainly plenty for electro fans to listen out for in your music – what’s your favourite piece of kit?

Right now and for a long time it’s been the Roland 404 and / or the 303. Most of my hardware goes through them in the recording chain, but I like them for bus processing too. It’s not for everyone cos it degrades the sound quality remarkably, but I like the way it has its own colour, like all good processing gear. I run a DX7 through the 404 live for the same thing. Cheap as chips too.

Musically the new EP (The Element Yes, out Dec 1st) is rather eclectic, how do you go about writing your songs?

There’s no tried and tested method for that, whatever works at the time. Though through experience I have a mental map of where I’m likely to end up based on the way an idea started, so depending on where I want that to be, I tend to know the best way to begin, be it on a piano, a field sample, bass riff, a few words I’m singing or whatever.

You’re currently supporting La Roux across Europe, how did that come about?

The invite came extremely naturally over cocktails on fruit machines in Las Vegas a few months ago. Prior to this we were recording in the same studio for months, so friendship was a natural ‘next step’ for us both.

What has the reaction been like?

Epic – the music isn’t exactly from different planets so I think we warm up her stage to the right temperature.

On that subject, who is the best/most interesting support act you’ve ever seen?

Secret Machines at a Muse gig in 2004. Only saw one song. Changed my musical landscape forever.

You headlined the Seabright Arms in London recently – how was topping the bill?

Loved it. Nothing like being on stage

And for a bit of fun, if you got to curate a festival, who would be on the bill?

All my mates. I’m blessed to be surrounded by such intensely talented friends. Shout to Clarence Clarity, Hannah Lou Clark, Son Joan et al.

Lastly, as we’re based in Manchester, we’re obliged to ask – Who is your favourite Manchester band?

The Beatles.

Just kidding. Probably 10CC.

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Joseph Curran

Features Editor and gig reviewer