Korean punk trio Patients, consisting of Sumin Jo (bassist and vocalist), Jaehyuk Lee (drums), and Hyuckjang Kwon (keyboardist), are having a good roll. After releasing their latest full album 18 in April, which is a fun, sharp 10-track record especially distinguished by Kwon’s keyboard sounds, the band took off to the UK in May to perform in Liverpool Sound City. When not busy promoting the new album, the band perform gigs at the Seoul live space they have owned and operated since 2013, Steel Face Rooftop 3639. We talked with Sumin Jo after their UK tour to learn more about their experience there, and what their plans are for the future!
It’s been a year since your interview with us. What has changed for Patients in the span of a year?
Hello and thank you so much for talking with us again! How have you been?
We’re totally good, thank you! And you?
Things over the past year with Patients have been really good. In late April, we released our second full-length album. It’s called 18. And in May we did our second tour in the UK. In June we held a special release show for 18 in Seoul and collaborated with a Korean graphic artist named Parpunk. That show was really cool!
We’ve been playing lots of shows in Korea in support of our new album too.
In May you completed your second UK tour. How was this tour compared to the last one?
The tour went really well! The tour was a bit easier than the last one because we knew more about touring in the UK this time around. And we knew more about packing too. When we went to the UK last year, we had to pay a lot of extra money for being over our luggage allowance. But this year, there were no extra charges. We were pretty proud about that!
One thing that made us really happy on this tour was that many people who saw us play last year came to watch us again. It was awesome to get to meet with them again and we really appreciate their support.
How did it feel to be invited again to the UK? How was the response from the UK crowds?
As soon as we finished our 2014 UK tour, we knew we wanted to go back there again this year and started making plans to return. The response from the crowds in the UK has been great! For our tour in May, we only played three gigs in the UK. We brought lots of copies of 18 to sell with us at the shows, and I thought we’d be bringing some back with us to Korea. But we actually sold out of CDs after our second show. So we didn’t have any albums left for people who saw our final gig in Liverpool. We’ll definitely have to pack even more CDs next time we go back.
Things went so well again this time that we’re already planning our next UK tour. We want to go back and play shows in London and Liverpool again, and also make stops in some other cities that we’ve never visited before.
You released 18 before you went to UK. Please tell us about this album!
With 18 we wanted to make music that was bright and happy regardless of what the lyrics said. There are so many tough things happening in Korea. I have limited knowledge of the situations in other places, but I assume they have tough things to deal with too. I hope enjoy our songs and that our music can take them to a better place.
Please each of you recommend one song from the new album for our readers.
I’m going to recommend Sipalsegi. Jaehyuk recommends R.I.P., and Hyuckjang’s pick is High Level Darling.
Nice! We especially like Children of the Ashes, but the whole album is truly enjoyable. Now, which country or venue do you want to perform in next?
We really want to perform in New York. I have family that lives there, so I think that could be a definite advantage while we’re there. I’d also like to play in Belgium and Thailand. The reason I picked Belgium is because recently I am interested in Belgium artists. As for Thailand, Hyuckjang toured there with another band before. He has good memories from Thailand and felt that country had a great band scene.
If you guys have the chance to perform in UK again, is there any specific festival that you want to play?
We want to play at Liverpool Sound City again. We love that festival so much! And we’d love the opportunity to play at the Great Escape Festival in Brighton and Rebellion Festival because it is a punk rock festival.
We will be crossing fingers for you! And what is your plan for the second half of 2015?
Play lots of cool gigs all over Korea, write some new songs, and keep working together to make Patients stronger and stronger!
Good luck with all your future plans! We are looking forward to more from Patients!