Cosmo Jarvis, 23, has had a love for both films and music from a young age and is currently the newest kid on the block within the growing indie music scene. After singing from the age of 12 and touring with Muse and Gym Class Heroes, Cosmo Jarvis is a name more and more people are beginning to get familiar with. Commenting on whether he likes touring with such big names Cosmo replies, “It depends really, sometimes there will be people who want to watch me, some nights they just don’t give a fuck, they just want you to die. I’m just getting in the way of them and Gym Class Heroes.”
We met at The Cavern in Exeter, a great venue for talent such as Cosmo. A room no bigger than an average size bathroom filled with amps, guitars and other equipment. Fletch, Cosmo’s brother, is currently his tour manager and meets and greets all the journalists queuing to talk to the rising hungover star. Cosmo stands in the claustrophobic room, he seems awkward which may have something to do with the dictaphone shoved in his face.
These days Cosmo is touring up and down the country – and is set for a busy summer at a host of festivals. Tonight Cosmo is stopping off in home territory to play in Exeter. Cosmo was brought up in Plymouth and ‘moved up the train tracks to’ Newton Abbot, now living in Paignton. How does it feel playing on home turf? “Good, good. I don’t know what the numbers are doing, it’s cool though. There’s always going to be a group of people turning up and The Cavern is a really great venue,” he says.
At the moment Cosmo is on tour stopping off at Birmingham, Cornwall and as far a field as Germany, but his passion for filmmaking is ever present even on the road, after producing his own short film The Naughty Room. Despite spending a lot of time in the tour van and playing up and down the country Cosmo still makes time for his film making. “I will edit when I’m on the road, if I have any film ideas I can be shooting when I’m on tour, then I edit on my laptop. I never let any one die completely. I’m working all the time.”
Cosmo is a perfectionist paying close attention to detail, using his passion for film making to produce such creative and diverse musical videos. His video for ‘Love This’ sees Cosmo sporting an all in one, rather tight red suit which he claims he didn’t know what it looked like till he watched the video back. What was the whole idea behind the red suit? Cosmo laughs before explaining. “The story was about meeting a devil and I didn’t just want to do a normal video so I made an abstract visualisation where the devil decides how relative bad is to good, and how good good really is and how bad bad really is. We are all bad by means of other people’s opinion of good so it was kind of just about that. That suit thing was just to make it a strong image, I wasn’t aware of how it looked until I got home and I that’s the god damn truth.”
Cosmo offers his fans something quite refreshing and diverse a quality not many bands deliver in a time where everyone is so desperate to produce something that will go viral. His videos are inventive highlighting what such a great talent this guy is, making it obvious that although tonight he is here performing on stage, making videos is something he enjoys just as much. “I have always been a film maker so music videos are a good way of making sure I keep practicing the craft of film as much as I can. I am going to make another one this year.”
Does he prefer making music or film? “They are both very different, with a song most of the time it’s my input which is either diluted by other peoples input whereas films are a real group thing. A film is a lot bigger project because you are trying to keep someone’s attention span for longer than a song. A song you can be a little bit frivolous with ideas that you think are deemed worthy of writing a song about, with a film you can’t, it’s really got to stick with what the story is. With a film you can’t move away from the idea or else it will fuck up.”
What I notice when I’m stood almost touching Cosmo’s face is that he loves a good chat and is happily answering the questions I face him with but I am shocked to learn that he admits he never talks to the crowd whilst on stage. Asking whether he believes he has a fan base he replies, “Sometimes people come to as many shows as they can, some people are like real hardcore fans and then some people heard ‘Gay Pirates’ and now they will come down to my gigs.”
‘Gay Pirates’ is perhaps one of Cosmo’s most well known songs after the likes of Stephen Fry tweeted about it upon hearing the song. Cosmo seems very modest about the fact that one of Britain’s biggest personalities is a big fan of the singer/songwriter. I ask him what he thinks makes the song such a huge success. “I don’t know, [Stephen] said he would still like it if he wasn’t gay, maybe it was the cinematography and the pantomineyness of the video. The fact it was done in one take. It could have been anything though.”
After Cosmo checks the time and I realise I have been standing in his face way too long I ask one final question, what was the last track you listened to? “It was Azelia Banks, that 212 song.” This answer is not what I was expecting and I am now even keener to watch Cosmo do his thing on stage. After stumbling over the various equipment for the second time tonight I am out of the claustrophobic room to watch to Cosmo do his thing – without the red suit, though.
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