Every so often, a band come along that you listen to and think, 'wow, they've got something special going on here'. We've had that feeling with Liverpool quintet Outfit for a while, and debut album Performance has delivered on the promise of their earlier material.

Ahead of its release today, we spoke to joint vocalist/synth player Tom Gorton about such things as the band's relationship with their label, the task of choosing which songs made the cut for the album, and why Gorton would love to be in the front row at one of his own gigs...

So, Outfit formed only 2-and-a-half years ago - are you surprised to have come this far?

No, I'd say we're exactly on track. In that space of time we've released a few singles, an EP, investigated a lot of sounds and lyrical themes and now our debut record is about to come out. I'm excited for people to hear how far we've come but I'm not surprised that we have. I'm also thankful to people who've been with us on this ride from the beginning and listened to all our music. I hope they love Performance.

How would you describe your sound to those who had never heard you before?

Proficiently romantic.

What's it been like working with Double Denim?

Working with Double Denim has been great. They've supported us from the beginning and given us a platform from which to grow and mature as artists. I'm so excited to release our debut record with them, it feels a good story is about to end and then we're going to start telling a new one. We were friends beforehand and that's helped; there's going to be a sense of collective achievement come September.

How difficult was it to decide which songs made the cut for 'Performance'? For instance (at least on the standard edition), 'Every Night I Dress Up As You' is nowhere to be found, and you'd think that would have been a shoe-in...

With 'Every Night I Dress Up As You', that was the first song that we 'released' so it was never a shoe-in to be on the record. It's a great song but it has been through a bit of surgery. I also forgot how to sing it properly. We did a really good take of it but the click track was all over it and that damaged me psychologically when it came to doing it again. I kept trying to recreate this phantom, deleted vocal track and in my head, failing.

I had a real breakdown over this song, much to everyone else's frustration I'm sure. So when a song goes through that upheaval I think there are other songs that feel fresher, even if other people still love it. People will still hear it though and I love the new version.

We did a lot of demos for the record last year and a lot of them didn't make the cut. Then we threw away stuff in the studio that wasn't quite happening. Our problem has never been having enough songs, it's just deciding which ones feel best and make a coherent record. I'd be concerned if we just had ten songs that we were frantically trying to make sound good. In the end it wasn't that difficult to decide what went on Performance, what we had just felt right.

People say that if you want to get to know a band, go see them live, so how does the Outfit live experience compare to your recorded output?

We've just become really happy and comfortable with our live show, which is good timing with the record coming out in under two weeks. The last show we played in London at The Sebright Arms was some of the most fun I've had onstage. The songs feel new and exciting, it was cool to see people dancing to loads of stuff that they'd never heard. When you see Outfit live you get a chance to dance with us. I'd love to see Outfit live, anyone who wants to step in for a show for me so I can front row it, just hit me up.

Have you got any surprises planned for the album launch show in the Kazimier in Liverpool on August 10th?

Confetti, piñata, Outfit scratch cards, a game of musical chairs, each member of the band will marry the other onstage, a hold up and a soliloquy.

Which of the songs on the album is your favourite?

'Nothing Big'. It felt like the birth of the record and I will always remember the time that we started working on it. It was exciting, free and wonderful.

Finally, what would you like to accomplish with Performance?

I dreamed once that Performance was decreed the most culturally valuable piece of information that the Earth had; and whilst this is a grandiose desire, I would love people to listen to it in their bedrooms or at parties and understand what we were trying to say to them, and for everyone to know that everything's OK.


Outfit's debut album, Performance, is out today via Double Denim.